I often get on the phone with customer service folks in the US, and when it comes time to spell out my name etc., I end up using a different word each time for the letters in my name. This seems to confuse the people on the other end of the line, especially since I use whatever word comes to my mind with that letter, rather than easy simple words.
So help me learn my ABCs. Is there a standard form? What were you taught in school?
A for Apple? or Alpha? or Airplane? or Azzure? or Anything?
The phonetic alphabet? You say that like there’s only one. There are lots out there. I listened to a really interesting radio documentary once on the history of them all. But anyway. For the OP, yeah, the smart thing to do would be to learn the most popular one.
I’ve got to say, as a phone monkey I absolutely adore it when people make the effort to use one of the recognised phonetic alphabets to spell something out - especially if they have a very thick accent. Compare
“D for Delta” or “P for Papa”
to this exchange (based on a call I took the other day):
What I heard was “B for Barry”. So to clarify, I repeated it back as “Was that B for Bravo?”. Which earned me “No. No. B for Barry, you know. Like with a sword. Barry.”