Why do so many people call me `Pablo'?

It is, as they say, a long story. For an abbreviated version, I refer you to a dusty old online manual page from the University of Washington's CS Department:


     pablo, david, hey_you - appellation of grad student

     pablo [ stop snoring! ]
           [ where's that paper that was due yesterday? ]

     Tall, stringy grad student seen  wandering  halls  of  Sieg.
     Useful for playing games involved with keeping aloft a small
     leather beanbag using feet (size 10.5).

     hackysack(1), pizza(1), tofu(3)

     They're not `bugs', they're undocumented features! Currently
     too numerous to list here.

     Originally called `David' , subject attended high  school  (
     Denver, Jefferson) where, due to circumstances that are best
     forgotten, an imaginary calculus student named  `Pablo'  was
     purported to exist. This student was assigned responsibility
     for any anonymous notes, cute quotations etc. that  appeared
     around school.

     At outset of college education (see `dartmouth'  ),  student
     (the  one  called  `David',  that is) left anonymous note on
     door of Gretchen Sporleder (see `lust' ) signed with moniker
     `Pablo'  (see  `mistake' ). Aformentioned female opened door
     as postscript was being written and  student  wandered  off,
     more  than  slightly embarrassed. Female, wondering who stu-
     dent was, saw the name `Pablo' written on door, asked around
     to find out where student lived.  Student's friends (many of
     them also named David), put one and one together  and  began
     calling hapless student `Pablo'.

     After several years and some hoping that the nickname  would
     wear off, student became accustomed to being called by Span-
     ish appellation, and found it useful  in  crowded  rooms  of
     Davids and as a conversation piece.

     Kernighan, Ritchie 7/31/84

Sun Release 4.1     Last change: 31 July 1984                   1

N.B.: These days, I generally respond to either name without much of a preference.