Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Of names and endearments

I once fell in love with a rotter because of the way he said my name. Well, to be honest, it wasn't, strictly speaking, my name. It was the name of a fat little pink pig. "Babe," he would drawl on my phone, and i would sizzle up like a piece of streaky bacon. He was that hot, i believed.

The nice man who, happily, I landed up with has a theory about why it is that men more often call the women in their lives by terms of endearment than women do their men: "Men love their women more than women love them back," he says. What an adorable thought!

However, i have my own theory on why men call their women Angel, sweetheart, sweetie, or even honey. Its because they are worried - ok, petrified - of yelling out another woman's name during sex. Imagine: "Oh Carol!" "No. Its Monica, actually." Or: "Oh Mummy!".A girl could get worried about her man if that happened."Sweetness!" is just so much safer. (Although, a note to men: "Thank you! Thank you!" and "you're marvellous! The best, the best!" is also quite good.)

There's also the theory, held by my married-for-ages friend Tiger (my nickname, not her man's) that women are less likely to call their men names, because they are more likely to be of the obscene, cursing variety.

Come to think of it, even nice pet names can turn nasty. A friend of mine and her man found themselves on a long drive with me in the back seat. To get the full impact of the following bit of dialogue from that drive, I suggest you read it aloud, in a pinched, uptight kind of voice (hers), and a snappy, irritated, married voice (his).

"Angel," she hisses, don't you think you're driving a little too fast?"

"No, my love, I don't!"

"Sweetheart, isn't 140 a teeny bit on the fast side? Darling?"

"Would you prefer to drive the car then, my precious?"

"Now you're doing 150! You sonofabitch! Etcetera.

Really, how bad is it to spread a little gloopiness? Not so terribly awful, as long as the term of endearment is meant as an endearment. So go on, sweetiepies, enjoy!

No comments: