SIGNIFICANT OTHER: Increasingly Significant Issue

Beverly Flanigan flanigan at OAK.CATS.OHIOU.EDU
Thu Apr 11 22:05:49 UTC 2002

At 04:35 PM 4/11/02 -0400, you wrote:
>Steve Kl. wrote:
>>On Thu, 11 Apr 2002, Lynne Murphy wrote:
>>>  In the UK, 'partner' is the term of choice regardless of sexual
>>>  orientation.  It's used without blinking all the time.
>>I, like most of my queer, coupled friends, use partner (as in my response
>>to telemarketers "There is no Mrs. Dubuque; this is Peter's partner." Then
>>they stammer, except recently one person went "Is this a business?")
>>Actually, in this day in age, I'm astounded by the number of telemarketers
>>who ask for Mrs. Dubuque. It seems so presumptuous on so many levels, not
>>just queer/straight ones. Haven't these people ever dealt with widowers,
>>for example? It seems like such an easy way to get off on the wrong foot.
>Not to mention women who are not and have not ever been Mrs.
>anything! (Not even when I was married)
>Alice Faber                                             faber at
>Haskins Laboratories                                  tel: (203) 865-6163 x258
>New Haven, CT 06511 USA                                     fax (203) 865-8963

When someone asks for "Mr. or Mrs. Flanigan," I answer, "There's no Mrs. F.
here and my son isn't here either."
But far more common is first-name address, which really bugs me.  I answer
irately, "How dare you call me Beverly?  You don't know me!"  Talk about
getting off on the wrong foot....

Beverly Olson Flanigan         Department of Linguistics
Ohio University                     Athens, OH  45701
Ph.: (740) 593-4568              Fax: (740) 593-2967

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