eternally stressed semanticist (cqs) wrote,
eternally stressed semanticist

Sorta language related

When I give my name at delis, pizza places, and so forth, I give it as "Henry", which is not at all my name. But it's a name I've used as a pseudonym; and I use it because it pretty much always gets spelled right, as opposed to "Lance", which has been known to come out as "Vance" or "Len" or, on a particularly bad day, "Laura". (I think that was a fact about the guy's handwriting, as opposed to my pronunciation or his hearing.) "Henry" is recognizable, and I kind of had to snicker when I was at lunch with Youri and Uri, whose names were predictably mangled while "Henry" came out fine. (It was nearly a problem once when I gave my name as "Henry" and then handed a credit card to the cashier, who looked at it and looked at me....)

The other day at Boloco, the guy at the end of the line called out...well, something. It sounded like it started with a "k". But the burrito he described sounded like the one I'd ordered, so I nodded, and took it, and sat down, and looked at the receipt, where the cashier had typed "kaka". "Kaka?" I thought. "That's pretty far off for Henry..." I considered, I hesitated, and finally I went back to the counter, where sure enough my burrito was done, and the woman before me was looking confused and hungry. So I handed hers to her (I hadn't unwrapped it), took mine, and all was well.

But man—poor Keiko.
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