Cynthia. It’s not Cyndi, Cindy nor any other completely made-up variation of Cynthia. It’s just Cynthia. It’s my first name. I use my middle name but I don’t mind being called Cynthia because 1) it is pretty and 2) most people use their first name so if someone who doesn’t know me calls me “Cynthia.” it’s okay. I will not, however, respond if called Cindy. I don’t like the assumption. I also don’t like it that a total stranger thinks they can call me something that would otherwise be a personal nickname. At the doctor’s office, etc. if I hear “Cindy Mangrum” being called out, the summoner can forget any response from me until I hear “Cynthia Mangrum,” at which time I will rise forth and respond, pretending that I hadn’t heard my name called until that very point. Which really, I hadn’t.
Lynne. *sigh* My namesake was my mother’s best friend, so I get the spelling. I do get tired of spelling it, only to have the other person still get it incorrect. Just the other day, someone was copying it off my indentification and still spelled it wrong, an error which was quickly brought to her attention in the form of, “Excuse me, you spelled my name incorrectly.” and I pointed to Lynne. She asked, “What’s wrong and I can fix it later?” My response: “If you can’t copy something verbatim when it’s right in front of your face, the likelihood of your ‘fixing it later’ probably doesn’t exist.”
Mangrum. I know it isn’t very common. Take the time to look at it. Sound it out. Man-grum. Ask if you’re not sure. It is neither Magnum nor Morgan. I am not a type of condom. I am not related to Dexter. ‘Round these parts there is also Mangum (no “r”) so look at it.
The most recent colossal screw-up was when an HVAC company (Andersen, in Charlotte, NC.) lost the opportunity to quote a new system for my house. I had to leave a message to schedule an appointment. I missed the return call so when I checked my voice mail, here’s what I got: “Hi, Tracy, this is Anne calling you back about a quote. You may return the call to my direct line at (phone number).” Thinking she may have left a message on my phone intended for someone else, I called her:
Anne: “This is Anne.”
Me: “Hello, Anne. I’m returning a call you had placed to someone named Tracy.”
Anne: “Your name isn’t Tracy?”
Me, flatly, seeing where this was going: “No it isn’t.”
Anne: “Your name isn’t ‘Tracy Ingram?’”
Me: “No. It’s (very clearly and slowly stating my name, as I had done when I left the message).”
Anne immediately bursts into laughter. Not the sheepish “oh gosh I’m sorry” giggle but loud, gut-busting rude laughter and there was no indication of her offering a professional apology for her error. While she was laughing, I responded: “You know, nevermind. Disregard the phone call and don’t bother calling me back” and I hung up. I figured if this is the impression I get from two phone calls, chances are they are so big that customer service is not terribly important to them anymore and they don’t need my paltry few thousand dollars.
Yes, I understand that none of it is simple but my fucking name is Cynthia Lynne Mangrum.