Whats my name again?
Yesterday and today are slow days because I’m new to the job and at the moment the only one in the office: the execs are in all day meetings with a potential client.
Throughout my multi-cultural life I have encountered a multitude of variations on the pronunciation of my name. In fact, it is so hard for some of Mr MM’s family that he told them to call me Maryam (some of you may know my issue with being called that, but whatever, I don’t complain.)
Since moving to Egypt and having the chance to talk extensively with British and Irish expats here I realized that the American pronunciation of my name (of which I prefer obviously) is in fact a MIS-pronunciation of it.
Standard American of Molly: Mah-lee
Standard UK: Moh-lee
One British woman quipped, “well its not spelled with an ‘A’ is it?”
Illusions shattering, glass everywhere.
But truth be told, I don’t care at all how its pronounced in England, I like it to be pronounced “Mah-lee” because THATS my name. While overseas though I have taken to attempting to pronounce it in the original fashion just because its easier for people to understand for whatever reason.
Today I have encountered what I believe will only be the first of many mistakes in regards to my name: confusion as to my sex. While no Anglophone would make that mistake, Molly is not a common name to find here, even among expats, and Egyptians have no cultural reference on which to base their assumption of my sex. In response to an email I sent to the AUC I received this response:
“Dear Mr. Carlson,”
Aw, shucks. Call me Molly, Mr. Carlson is my father.