Backseat Beckie

College nickname of Miss Rebecca Howe (Kirstie Alley), manager of the Boston tavern named Cheers on the sitcom CHEERS/NBC/1982-93.


When Frasier Crane (Kelsey Grammer), a psychiatrist who frequented the bar, discovered that Rebecca Howe-an alumnus of the University of Connecticut-was considered a “party girl on campus” waitress Carla Tortelli (Rhea Perlman) couldn’t believe that “Miss Granite Panties” could have ever been that amorous.

And Sam Malone (Ted Danson), the head bartender who had been trying unsuccessfully to bed Miss Howe, commented in disbelief “the one who goes through life with her knees bolted together?”

On further investigation with an ex-school chum of Rebecca’s, Frasier Crane unearthed, the nickname “Backseat Beckie.”

After Rebecca realized everyone in the bar knew her college nickname, she told them that the appellation was given to her because she was very shy and that the girls in college thought it would be a “real gas” to call her the opposite of what she really was.

Seeing that the crowd at Cheers was not buying that story, she countered with, “I was really aggressive in college. I never took a BACKSEAT to anyone.”

Finally, in a quite moment, Rebecca pulled Sam Malone to the side and agreed to tell the real story behind her nickname, if he kept it quiet. With Sam agreeing to her terms, she began:

“I was living in a women’s dorm on campus and one night a fire broke out. Well I didn’t have time to change my cloths, so I had to run out into the parking lot wearing only a teddy…black, but see through. All of a sudden, I was caught in this fire engine’s headlights. Well, I didn’t know what to do. I looked all around, and suddenly I spotted this open convertible. Well, I climbed in and I slunk down into the back seat. Suddenly this hulking fireman was standing over me. It was magnificent. I looked in his eyes. I knew what he wanted…and I wanted it, too. When it was over I opened my eyes, and I notice we were not alone. Others had watched and not said a word. And that’s why I’m known as Backseat Beckie. Satisfied?”

Wiping his now sweaty face with a white bar towel, Sam entered the men’s room. Rebecca then walked over to Carla. “Thanks for the story, Carla here’s your ten bucks.” To which Carla replied, “Yeah, the twenty dollar one would have killed him.”

Note: “Sweet Baby” was the password code used by Rebecca Howe to access her computer.


Born in Philadelphia, Jerome Alphonse Holst worked 30 years as a librarian. He has since retired and lives in Greensboro, North Carolina. Mr. Holst is also the author of the children’s books “Norman the Troll,” "Norman the Troll and the Haunted House," and "Gretchen and the Gremlins." In addition, he penned the fantasy novel “The Adventures of Glinda Gale,” a retelling of “The Wizard of Oz" and the reference text “The Encyclopedia of Movie and TV Insults.” .

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Posted in Insulting Nicknames, Personal Nicknames

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