In the beginning, I would get upset or try to correct my wife, but over time, you just get used to it and eventually use it as Filipinos do.
Some examples are or usage:
Motor = Motorcycle
Traffic = A lot of traffic i.e. Wow, there is traffic!
Jeep = Jeepney (a large public transportation vehicle)
O O = yes (not oh oh, when you break something)
There is also shortening of names.
Elena is often called Len
Maracheu is called Chu
Mercy is called Mer
Then there are nicknames, and I have no idea where they come from. I worked with a man who when we meet told me, “My name is Constancio, but you can call me Pongs.”
I have three nieces, Meriliza, Monaliza and Rizilina. Their nicknames are Inday, Nene and Enen respectively. There are many common nicknames here, Bing, Bong, to name a few. Then there are nicknames with double words, such as Bibi, Joy Joy, Mer Mer, Dodo, Dondon.
There are names I think are different from what we know as names such as Love, Shalom, Beauty, Lady. I met a man whose name was Jocelyn.
If you calling out to someone you do not know their name, such as a clerk, for a guy you call him Dong. If a man wants to call attention to a female clerk, he will call out Dai, a lady will call out Darling.
Another thing with names is respect for a licensed profession, their title and name will be used. If your close to the person you might use first name and if not their last name. Examples are Architect Neal, Doctor Richard, Engineer Ray, and Attorney Mecado.
As a foreigner and senior in age to many I meet, I am usually called Sir Bruce. When I tell them they can just call me Bruce I am usually told “Oh no, you are to be respected”, or when I worked in an office here “you have a higher position.”
Here in the Philippines, a younger sibling, family member or even meeting a small child, the younger person is to show respect by “Blessing”. They will take the back of your right hand and touch it to their forehead. My nieces and nephews do that to me when I enter either the house, or when they enter. One of my nieces gives “Blessing” when I leave or meet her when out.
This morning at the Wet Market, while waiting for my wife, I was chatting to the grandparents with a little girl, as they were to walk away, the grandfather said to the little girl “Give Blessing”. She took my right hand and touched her forehead. I thanked her and thought how nice they were teaching her respect. I had never met these people before.
Another sign of respect is when I am outside the mall having a cigarette and start a conversation, if the person needs to leave; they wait until you have finished what you are saying and then apologize that they need to go.
These are some of the things that at first feel strange, but over time, you get used to as part of your life. As I always say, the culture here is different, but it is their country and it is us that have to learn to live and respect their ways of life.