…is that apparently a lot of foreigners (especially from India) get to America and get a new first name: “Fnu.” Here’s how this happens:
1. Your visa has something like “Suralikrishnan” in the surname section, and nothing in the “first name” box.
2. The American immigration officer puts “FNU” (for “First Name Unknown”) in the “first name” section of your immigration paperwork.
3. The Social Security officer who looks at your paperwork, or the DPS lady who does your driver’s licence, thinks your first name is Fnu and enters you into the American identity system as “Fnu Suralikrishnan.”
4. Later on you run into trouble because now some of your paperwork says that your first name is “Fnu” but your Indian passport, for example, doesn’t say that. And now you get to go through months of trouble trying to get the American government to change its opinion that your first name is Fnu.
Of course you all know my reaction to that: “And if I ever have a son, I think I’m gonna name him…Bill, George, anything but Fnu!!” Actually it would be really tempting to name the kid Fnu Pierce, simply because when I got a letter in my mailbox today addressed to previous resident Fnu Jusfiannur, my instant first reaction was, “What a cool name!”