Editor's Note: I still don't feel like myself on most days. I'm slowly getting back to the place where I can enjoy life. With that being said, here's part two of Peter Pan's story.
Shakespeare once asked, "Whats in a name?". He wrote, "That which we call a rose by any other name would smell just as sweet". * He also penned more than a hundred phrases that still resonate to the core of our beings. Willie related the beauty of a woman to the brightness and glory of the sun. If it had been him that called me by the wrong name, I'd have been fine.
I only bring it up because Peter Pan called me by the wrong name. In a text message! Which we all know is his favorite method of communication.
It started out innocently enough. He wanted to say "Hey". But he didn't say just Hey. He said, "Hey JBard". I first brushed it off because C'mon! Right? It's just a typo. Damn You Auto Correct! But then he did it again and again.
It was only because he kept texting me that I finally called him. Well, that and his persistent texting caused me to have a caustic reaction in the ice cream aisle of my grocery store. Imagine standing in the frozen treats aisle debating with your partner over the benefits of getting the name brand ice cream on sale versus the store brand just because it's cheaper, when a crazy, overweight lady whose pocket keeps ringing bursts out with "Uuuuuuugggggghhhhhh! What the hell do you want?!?". That would freak you out, right? Well it freaked out the lady in the aisle with me so I totally rolled my eyes at her, snatched my phone from my pocket and dialed the mo.
He says, "Hey J-Beard"
PP: I miss you
Me: That's weird. We don't even know each other well enough for that.
Because, really? People! It's been like 48, maybe 56, hours.
He proceeded to tell me that he wanted to know me. If I gave him a chance to know me that I wouldn't regret it. It was creepy. I told him that I had to go because I was busy and that I would call him when I wasn't busy. We hung up and... almost immediately... he texted me. Peter Pan wanted to know if our date for Wednesday was still on. Actually, he wanted to know "our meetin on wednesday cumin on".
Firstly, I was angry that he was even texting me because I know I just said I was busy before I hung up the damned phone. Secondly, why would he spell "come" like that! Ewah! Plus, he had spelled my name wrong... again. And had managed to say it wrong on the phone. Now, I'll give the pronunciation to the whole accent thing but I told him how to spell my name. He's just doing it on purpose at this point.
When he asked me to meet him at 7p on Wednesday, I told him that I wasn't going anywhere with someone who didn't know my name. He acted all confused and wrote, "Am sorry just shorten your name". And then proceeded without shame to say, "I want us meet where u wil feel comfortable there is a bar in de mall I would like us meet over there if it is ok wit u If u have a place in mind u can out wit it".
My head almost exploded in grammatical anger.
Then he asked me if I was still busy. Like 20 seconds after that written assault on the English language. By now I'm all over Facebook with the ridiculousness of this whole tale because how can you spell and say my name wrong then think that we're still on for a date? How! I've also let Av know that her crime will not go unpunished and I can only think of one way for her to make penance: free beers.
I tell him yes, that I'm busy and then I proceed to spell my full name. J-B-I-R-D. I tell him that calling me JBeard or JBard is not the same and that he needs to stop. Now. That it's really starting to piss me off. He apologizes and then says that he'll explain it to me when we meet and wants to know if I'm driving or if he's picking me up. I'm all "No. You'll explain it to me now".
And then he tells me that he has a cousin named Joyous Beardlandia and they call her J-Beard for short. And because my name is J Hypen Bird and the two names are so similar he thought that I'd go by J-Beard also. Am I ok now? Do I understand? Problem is not only do I *not* understand but I lose my shit!
I tell him that I don't believe him. How can it be that he calls me the wrong name by TEXT? He had to spell it out AFTER I had spelled it out.
He wanted me to explain why I think he would lie to me. What would he gain? He was even willing to show me her picture when the time was right. I had pierced his little, African soul with my distrust. I didn't even know him. Peter Pan assured me that he would never lie to me for any reason. Was I clear now?
All I had for him was, "Yeah, well, it hurts when someone can't get your name right".
He plead his case all night. And I ignored him until the sun came up and he texted me, "Gudmornin JBurn n have a guday at wk".
In my best angry text font I told him that he was just doing it on purpose now, spelling my name wrong. And that it was mean and hurtful. Peter Pan was told not to call or text me anymore. Wednesday was off and I wasn't interested.
Willie asked what's in a name. But the truth is he already knew. Names, love them or hate them, make up who we are at our core. To ignore that is to ignore our greatest self. And there's no way I'm going to let some punk with an accent and a mommy complex do that to me.
*from Romeo and Juliet
I learned a new word.
4 months ago