tales of a girl in the city

décembre 21, 2005

The Pressure Of A (Nick)Name

Guys do nicknames.

They give them to one another at work, on sports teams, between friends. And they also give them to girls. I'm told they do this--at least partially--to keep track of one another's love lives. This is hilarious because the majority of guys I know only date one girl at a time, and I hardly see how remembering one additional name per friend could be difficult. But, they claim it is, and they've found nicknames to be the perfect solution.

How they go about it seems to vary. One circle of my guy friends use a girl's profession and interests to create her nickname. As a result, they talk about "The Attorney," or about me, "The Blogging Opera Singer." (Though I neither blog nor sing for a living, I was glad they chose that nickname because if I was known as "The Real Estate Agent," I don't think I could sleep at night.)

Other nicknames I've heard guys use over the years: "Haley-Bop," "Hair Donut," "Deceptacon" (the name for a girl who looks cute from far away but is actually ugly up close), and "Stumpy the Go-Go Cow" (the guy responsible for this one would kill me if I elaborated). There's also, of course, the ever-popular reduction of a girl's name to initials, which I think is often used as a way to instantly de-feminize her for the purposes of work and/or delivery of a clear "I don't want to sleep with you, you're one of the guys now" message.

This brings us to Harvard. Harvard himself has given me several nicknames. When we had only gone out on one or two dates, I was known as "Kathryn-with-a-'y'." This because he has always loved the name "Kathryn" spelled the way I spell it. (Thank you, Mom and Dad, for not naming me "Helga.")

Later, as we got comfortable around one another and started to tease, whenever I call him "Harvard," he returned the favor by calling me "Bunny," as in: "Bunny, let's go to the Club later for a tennis lesson and a gin and tonic," said in a Thurston-Howell-From-Gilligan's-Island Voice.

Now, as he is getting to know me better, he also uses the nickname that all of my close friends and family use--he calls me "Kate." And, finally, in what I consider to be a stroke of genius on his part, he has also started referring to me as just plain old "Gorgeous." It's hard, but I've learned to deal.

His friends are a different matter. I knew they were nickname kind of guys the moment I met them. They've got nicknames for ex-es, for friends, for current girlfriends, you name it. So I was certain that there was one circulating about me. And, as anyone would, I hoped it was a good one--more "Kathryn The Great" than "Stumpy the Go-Go Cow."

Well, it is a good one. It is, in fact, a fantastic one. Ready for it?

It's " wit' ." It even functions on multiple levels! Joy! Rapture! I feel like Sally Field when she won her Oscar! They like me! They REALLY like me!

Level One: It's shortened version of "Kathryn with a 'y.'"

Level Two: They think I'm witty. They went to Harvard where no one is funny, so they are easily fooled.

Level Three: Harvard's friend from Pennsylvania shortened it as such because, in Philly, when you order a sandwich that has everything, you ask for it "wit'."

I have tried to argue that this also means that they think I'm stacked, but Harvard says I shouldn't push my luck.

décembre 20, 2005

Transit Strike

No reading tonight after all.

décembre 13, 2005

My First Reading!!

For anyone who isn't a crazy stalker, please come hear me read my short story "Sexy" next Tuesday night.

That's Tuesday December 20 at 7 Pm at the 92 St. Y (Lexington Ave. @ 92nd Street).

For anyone who is a crazy stalker, are you also single? If so, let's talk. Harvard has a girl friend who I think you'd be perfect for....

décembre 11, 2005

Santa's Helpers

We sat on the floor of the Post Office, reading through the big, round scrawls--the i's dotted with hearts and the Santa Clauses colored into the corners (with belly-buttons of course, and one wearing Nike's). Dear Santa. They all began with that: Dear Santa.

Dear Santa,

I promise I will put cookie and milk under the Christmas tree. I don't have a chimney, but I leave my window open....

There were also the kind that featured backwards "e's" and misspelled words--you could almost see their mouths moving as they held the crayons in their fists. They probably had big, juice-stain clown lips and sticky glue-patch fingers, and their mothers finished the letters for them so that the addresses, at least, would be legible.

Then there were the Future Type-A personalities, who'd cut out pictures from the catalogues. Model numbers. Detailed notes. Please also send two packages of AA batteries so that I can play with this toy right away. Thorough. These were the future Mathletes. The ones who asked for school supplies.

There were also the sort who took a few frantic seconds out from jumping on beds and terrorizing family pets to scribble, DEAR SANTA--I WANT A WWE RAW SMACKDOWN T-SHIRT. These kids scared us.

Harvard picked out the ones who wanted warm scarfs and mittens, deciding on the spot that they'd be getting "warm" but they'd also be getting something that whirred or buzzed or jumped or dug. Because no kid should just get long-underwear from Santa.

I picked out the little girl with no chimney because, come on. How could I resist? She's getting a lot of Barbies, and hopefully--unlike me--she won't be tying them to her record player. And, yes, I went to a women's college and know that Barbie is Satan personified and any woman in real life who had those measurements wouldn't be able to actually bear children, but would, instead, be forced to totter down fashion runways for the rest of her life clothed in free couture, making $10,000 dollars an hour, while getting tax-write off pedicures and fending off all the investment bankers who wanted to date her. And--knowing all of that--I bought myself a Barbie too.

And it occurred to me today, having not had a boyfriend who would do actual Christmas stuff at Christmas time since...wait for it....

...wait for it....



HIGH SCHOOL (deleted "High fucking school" because this is, after all, a Christmas post)

...that I am quickly finding out that the spirit of giving is fantastic. But the spirit of giving followed by a quick walk home with our Santa strip down into our chilly underwear, and get into his snuggly bed...and the icy feet...and his lame-but-adorable flamingo boxer shorts...and him warming my hands in between his knees under the covers...and full-lip kisses...and making the Wookie noise to freak his roommate out...til we laugh and laugh and can't nap we're laughing so hard...

...that stuff is good enough to knock a girl's tree right over.

I love caring about people. I love being cared about back.