Dennis Bagstevold


What is ※ Defur?

One of the more common questions received - and for me thought about - is the meaning behind my nickname and the recent change. Originally I wrote about 3000 words about the nicknames I've had throughout my life, and what they've meant to me. After going through the post, I felt like the message that I wanted to put forward now somehow got lost in the number of words I put out.

I decided to redo the text and ask myself the question once more, "What is ※ Defur?".

※ What is "DEFUR"?

This has always been something hard for me to answer since it's been a nickname that I've carried since before I was a teenager. The simple reason of how it came to be was when I was making my first online account on a Harry Potter forum and not being able to think of anything. After thinking briefly I just putting letters together from alphabet like a puzzle "a... b... c... D... E... F" and finally adding an UR to make "Defur". In other words, the name doesn't have any meaning, but it's also why I like it. I want to give its meaning. It's not referring to anything, or is a secret acronym, its just a word for me.

Growing up with this nickname, I've been using it on all my accounts for games and forums. Eventually it was a something that would become a part of me. Except the obvious upsides of almost no one in the entire world sharing the name, people would start to connect the name with me as a person. At a point when I played games very intensively, I had more people calling me "Defur" than my real name.

In short terms; Does the name have a meaning? Yes and no. It has no original meaning or origin, but the name carries and embodies the personality, visions and goals of myself.

※ What is "※"?

The mark "※" is known as Komejirushi (米印) and is casually abbreviated as 'kome' for its likeness to the kanji for rice "米" (with "印" or 'Shirushi' meaning sign/symbol).  

It's an asterisk used in Japan and Korea and has a surprisingly well formulated description of it in its short Wikipedia article which states "It is used to call attention to an important sentence or thought, like a prologue or footnote".

I first saw this mark when I started working in Japan, and I was intrigued by its simple aesthetics. It was merely used in the bullet point lists for our meetings but the imagery of the mark somehow got stuck in my mind. Whenever I would walk around in Tokyo I would occasionally see it on signs, and one day when talking with an acquaintance about the use of Emoji's on Twitter, we would both agree on the appeal of the kome-mark.

As for me and right now, I'm not sure what I want to do with my life. I'm at another crossroad, with no route looking like the other. It's something that has happened time and time again when one chapter in my life is closing, and another one eventually opens. The only consistent part of me throughout these times, is that I keep creating things. Sure, the tools change, and the medium gets switched out now and then. But I'm always creating. Often when I do, it's because I want to express something. May it be a thought, statement or even a feeling. 

When I'm creating I feel like the things that I come up with often are visualized like bullet point lists. Things to do in structured manner. Things which categorizes and highlights different parts of my thoughts and feelings.

As such, I am ※ Defur.