Monday, January 25, 2010

19. MY ORDER NAME IS SOPHIE

On Saturday I have my first REAL date as a New Yorker!!!

Accordingly, I must get my nails done. Actually, I am a little obsessed with perfectly shaped and polished fingernails. So much so, I am willing to cut back on eating, drinking and shopping to ensure regular manicures. I am guessing it will take the threat of life in a cardboard box under the GWB (George Washington Bridge) to suspend the manicures. Until then, long live the nail salons!

Interestingly enough, in a town where an apartment costs $1.4 million, a manicure can cost as little as $8. It takes a few calls for the planets to align, but eventually I find a salon on the Upper West Side.

Now, if you have Indian friends you know our names can be difficult to correctly pronounce: Aishawarya, Bhupinder, Chaaya. And these, like mine, are not fun to disclose over the phone either. Which I am guessing, is the reason the salon receptionist responds in silence every time I repeat the spelling of my name. When she finally speaks, her reply does not at all resemble my name.

Gently I say no, and very slowly, again spell my name, wondering if our accents are colliding -- a Hindu Valley Girl and a Korean immigrant. She apologizes and re-slaughters my name. This time in a whole new way. Seriously? In the mean time she SIGHS, like she’s annoyed? Really?

A similar situation arose this morning at Starbucks when I ordered my skinny latte. They asked me for my name and I supplied it. Then they looked at me as though I made it up. Trust me, I grew up in Minnesota, if I was going to MAKE UP name, I’d pick Amy, Kate, Lisa. Hell, I’d pick Apple or Moondust, before I picked something Indian!

Fearing this conversation could go on all day; I relent and tell receptionist my name is Sophie. It is the first non-Indian name that pops into my head. Again I hear the receptionist sigh, this time in relief. With joy she says, “Great, Sophie. We’ll see you tomorrow at 6:00 pm.”

I guess you make concessions to advance your agenda.

4 comments:

Heather said...

surprisingly, people from other countries have problems with Heather - it always give me headaches explaining the "TH"...

101 Bad Desi Dates said...

Trust me, I hear your pain.

starlight said...

Mmmm I wonder why folks have a difficult time pronouncing Rosemarie? It's a perfectly normal English-sounding name. Isn't it? I was thinking of changing my name to Moonlight? What do you think?

101 Bad Desi Dates said...

I love Moonlight!I think you should do it! I used to have a friend named Claudy and my mother called her Cloudy ...