Monday, January 24, 2011

Hi, My Name Is...

My name is Ilene. That is I-L-E-N-E. Not Irene, Eileen, Elaine, Ileen, Illene, Ilean, Alien (this was big with the Aussies), Llene, etc. For the past week or so, my coworkers at the animal shelter that I volunteer at have been calling me Irene as a joke. I have to admit, it's funny because I am calling the offenders different names, too. However, I absolutely HATE when someone calls me by the wrong name.
The worst is at work. If I am emailing you from my work email address, which is my first name dot my last name at my company dot com, then there is absolutely no reason for you to misspell my name in your reply email. If I am calling you and reading you off the spelling of my name, don't read it back spelled wrong because you think that every Ilene in the world should spell it with an "E". I once had a guy argue with me on the spelling of my name. When I finally told him that my parents named me and I did not choose my name, he told me that it was stupid of them. I told him that 'Ilene with an I' will not be doing business with him anymore and then proceeded to call him by the wrong name and hung up.

I do love when I get telemarketers calling me and asking to speak with Irene. I always tell them they have the wrong number. Suckers!
Around New Year's, a group of friends and I went to a Thai restaurant. The owner was this adorable old Asian woman who clearly wasn't fluent in English. She came over to talk to everyone at our table because she likes to get to know her customers by name (can you see where I am going with this?). So we went around the table and introduced ourselves - "Scott, Ryan, Alex, Ashley, Ilene." She had absolutely no problem with the L's in Ashley and Alex, yet she kept calling me Irene. I do understand that Asians (specifically Japanese) have a hard time pronouncing L's, but I just thought it was so strange that she could say the L in the other two names but not mine. It totally reminded me of the scene in A Christmas Story.

Is it too much for a not-so-common name like mine to be used in the right manner? I can take the jokes and the annoying 80's song that is frequently sang to me, but just get it right!

An to prove that I do have a good sense of humor, here is a list of jokes that I have heard time and time again that involve my name:
  • What do you call a witch with one leg? Eileen.
  • Knock, knock. Who's there? Eileen. Eileen who? Eileen on the door until you open it.
  • Is your last name Dover? (As in Ilene Dover/I leaned over)

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