Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Introducing the New Mrs. Kennedy

My lifelong dream, achieved! Marrying into the Kennedy family! I can hardly believe it myself! *Swoon!*

No, I didn't marry the ghost of JFK Jr., nor did I run off to Vegas this weekend and marry the first Kennedy I came across, but I did call the Evil Safeway and the very not-evil girl on the phone updated my customer information to reflect my new, married name. Ahem.

(Come to think of it, this is the second time this month I've lied to someone about my marital status. The first time went like this:

Me: Get out of car at bank, totally minding my own business, I just want to go to the ATM.
Him: Homeless black man hanging around with several friends at the bank at 7:00 on a Thursday morning.
Me: Trying to avoid eye contact, walking back to car.
Him: Hey, missus!
Me: Look up, but not for too long.
Him: Are you married?
Me: Yeah, I am. Don't notice the complete lack of jewelry, don't notice, don't notice!
Him: Figures.
Me: Unlock car door.
Him: Well, you have a very pleasant way about you.
Me: Thanks. Have a good day.
Him: You too.
Me: Get in car quickly, thinking, Was it the pleasant way in which I haven't showered yet today? The pleasant way in which I'm wearing the first clothes I found in my drawer, have no makeup on and hastily threw my hair in a ponytail? The pleasant way in which I tried to ignore you? The pleasant way in which I got in the car and immediately locked the doors and whyohwhy aren't we home yet? No, sir, I think what you meant to say was, "You have a nice ass.")

So, yes, I lied to the Safeway people. But it is totally justified, since they insist upon thanking me, BY NAME, every time I shop there with my damn Safeway card. And, I don't know about you, but I have issues with them using my last name -- often preceded by "Mrs." -- in public, in front of whoever is in line behind me.

For starters, it's just not safe. I don't want anyone I don't know knowing my name unless I offer it. Haven't we seen enough of those "Stranger, danger!" messages? And identity theft public service announcements? My name is a valuable piece of information, and one of the keys to my personal financial information. And, I really don't want the guy behind me buying a case of Bud Light to overhear my name and catch up with me in the parking lot and offer to show me his newest tattoo. Hell, half the time I'm at a bar I give people a fake name because I don't actually want to talk to them ever again.

[Sidenote: When selecting a fake name, be sure to choose one that's believable. I mean, a name like Anastasia Beaverhausen is a good conversation piece, but if the point is to not converse with someone... Also, it's taken. Keep thinking. If you're not the creative type, try this.]

Also, dearest Safeway people, it is not 1956 and you are not my friendly local grocer. You and I do not have a personal relationship whereby I expect you to greet me by name and know what vegetables are my favorite and inquire as to how my great-aunt Mildred is faring. You, Safeway, are not a quaint little corner store, you are a multi-billion dollar corporation, and I am an anonymous patron. And I like it that way. So, please, STOP PRETENDING TO BE SOMETHING YOU'RE NOT!

I thought up this little "Oh, I got married and am now updating my last name, tee hee hee" scheme several months ago, and it pops into my head every third time I go to the grocery store, but usually by the time I get home I've already moved on to putting away the groceries, cooking, etc and then the next time the cashier calls me by my honest-to-goodness, right-there-on-the-birth-certificate name, I cringe. Today, I finally remembered to take action. Hooray! The not-evil customer service girl warned me that it could take up to 24 hours for the change to go into effect, so if I do any shopping in the next day or so, they still might use my old last name. I think I'll manage.


At Tue Jul 25, 09:17:00 PM PDT, Anonymous lori said...

Congratulations Mrs. Kennedy! Hope the ficticious husband isn't out pretend skirting around now that he's pretend out of rehab.

At Wed Jul 26, 05:57:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Kristina said...

Hmm, I thought they got your name off of your credit card. I actually use the Safeway card associated with an old roommate, but obviously my own credit card and they always refer to me by MY name. I guess this isn't a problem if you use cash.

At Wed Jul 26, 08:45:00 AM PDT, Anonymous matty said...

K, it's california, not DC. Get used to it.

At Wed Jul 26, 09:18:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with the other commenter...I have Annie's card, but use my debit card and they always say my name! I'm curious how you'll explain the difference? We keep separate checking accounts????

At Wed Jul 26, 08:10:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Jaelith said...

Kate, love the blog (I know, I'm a bit late to the party). Sorry I missed you last time you were in DC, hope to make it out next time. BTW, you are totally inspiring me to drag my lazy butt to the gym more often!

At Mon Jul 31, 05:56:00 AM PDT, Blogger Carolie said...

How funny! I never thought of the safety aspect! I guess because I say my name aloud in public when introducing myself, and I'm sure a ton of people overhear my name and the names of my friends if we're out in public, talking to one another.

I'm always pleased to be called "Ms. MyLastName", unlike lots of folks out there who say things like "that's my mother!" It's a respect thing that I appreciate.

Clever way to get around it though! I somehow switched grocery store cards with my stepfather, and it was very disconcerting to be addressed as "Ms. HISLastName" for a while!


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