It's the Little Things
Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Sometimes I get into a bit of a self-analysing mood.
Today it's about The Boy.
You see, he began as The Boy because I did not know the status of our relationship.
Then he was The Boy because I didn't want to sound insecure (call him by name, person to whom I'm talking doesn't know him, response: my BOYFRIEND... or simply referring to him as my boyfriend incessantly). Now that people know about him a bit more, this is mostly unnecessary.
On the Internet he will remain The Boy as his name is pretty unique, and this is a public blog.
Now, The Boy is a verbal cue. Should you refer to him as The Boy, it implies that you are not close enough to me to know him by name (or remember his name), so I use The Boy as a verbal cue to clean up my language (as people with whom I am not close probably don't know me well enough to deal with my potty-mouth) and to self-edit stories. This is actually where I get into trouble.
This month a friend asked me at a party, "Where is The Boy?". Now this ordinarily wouldn't be problematic except for a) the Host of the party takes exception to me calling him The Boy (not that The Boy himself particularly likes it) and b) it modified my behaviour, despite me not really recognizing what happened until afterwards. The funny thing is, what we hear depends on what we are listening for. All night, I had been referring to him by name, but once my fiend referred to him as The Boy, I switched as well, and then began self-editing. At that point, the Host called me out, not remembering that I hadn't used that term all night, because it only became relevant when he heard it.
We were both annoyed.
But I don't really feel like I have an alternative. At home, he is called by name or Ashke (Mercedes Lackey's made up term of endearment, meaning "beloved"). I do call people in general "darlin'" -- I try to avoid "honey" or "hon", as 90% of the time I'm using it sarcastically or patiently patronizingly -- and I want to avoid sharing that descriptor to him.
I use The Boy somewhat habitually with strangers and acquaintances because I like to talk about him and us, but don't want to mince words. I've been eliminating it from my vocabulary amongst those "in the know", but sometimes I slip. I refuse to call him Ashke to someone else, as it's grammatically incorrect for the non-existent word, but also because I'm a little embarrassed about using said non-existent term of endearment.
Not sure what can change, other than my habits, but I'm trying!