Close up Hands Tea x

Sit a bit and hear some observational stories I’ve been steeping.

Call me by my NAME.

Yesterday, I was told that I made a terrible faux pas by not calling someone by their proper first name. Not only had I made an error, apparently this person was “offended” that I couldn’t get his name right.

 

mug-name
Ouch.

 

Now, in my defense this introduction was made in a bit of a flurry as we were walking through a film location for a short I wrote and commence shooting this weekend. This is a movie about a cat that will involve Cat Wranglers (yes, that’s a real thing) and multiple cats. This film location is the house of a friend whose son I know is allergic to dogs. Turns out, he’s allergic to cats, too. His sister, I find out in the moment before this introduction is also. And I’m about to spend the better part of 12 to 14 hours in their home with a sackful of cats (honestly, I believe they come in cages – we’ll have a Screen Actors Guild Official Monitor who will, well… monitor that). Our movie will have an official credit that says, “No Animals Were Harmed in the Making of This Movie” but there is no guarantee my friend’s offspring are going to be okay. I’m having a mild heart attack and then I get introduced to three new people in a matter of seconds and only get 2 of the 3 names correct before our 20 minute encounter is over. Some people would understand if you make a mistake with their moniker in a moment of madness.

 

Not this guy. He was upset with me.

 

It’s not like I did it on purpose. You know, as though his name was Michael and I called him Mickey. And to be fair, his wasn’t a beautiful, exotic multi-syllable name from a distant land that I mucked up with my laidback California native tongue.

 

Nope.

 

His name was: Steve.

 

Crap. I did it again.

 

His name was: Steven.

 

[It’s a subtle difference. So subtle, YOU might even have to go back and read those two lines again.]

 

I’m not going to make excuses or defend myself, as I did a few paragraphs ago – but I would like to explain that I might (just MIGHT) have made this teeny, tiny, infinitesimal gaffe because I’d spend a couple of decades with a guy with the same name. The father of my two children (whose names I know, but not how much they weighed or their exact down-to-the-second arrival on the clock. I know, I’m a flawed human bean) – was a Steve. I only called him Steven when I was angry. Even though we divorced a while back, I didn’t call him by his proper name that often. Still don’t.

 

But, give me a moment. I’ll practice…

 

Steven. steveN. STEVEn. Sounds like “steeeev-EN.” Rhymes with “even.” Steven, Steven-Steven.

 

By George! I think I’ve got it!!

 

Oh, rats. Wrong name. Now I’ve got to start over. But this time, maybe with a Keith. It’s waaaaay easier.

 

xo – t.

 

“From our ancestors come our names, but from our virtues our honors.” – Proverb
“Forgive your enemies, but never forget their names.” – John F. Kennedy
“One forgets words as one forgets names. One’s vocabulary needs constant fertilizing or it will die.” – Evelyn Waugh
“You have but to know an object by its proper name for it to lose its dangerous magic.” – Elias Canetti
“…by any other name would smell as sweet.” – Billy Shakespeare