I'm not a big fan of them.
Yes, I call almost everyone I know "darling." My close friends, I call "sweetie." And some of them return the favor. IC, in her texts to me, usually writes: "Hey QT." KD calls me "chica." MM in Tokyo often calls me "Sexy Bitch."
I rather like that.
So I suppose it's more accurate to say that I dislike it when MEN call me by pet names. And I make a distinction between pet names and nicknames. I don't blink an eye when I am called or referred to as "hellspawn" or "hoagie" or "C-belle." Again, I rather enjoy those. Makes me feel sort of warm and fuzzy.
But appellations such as "baby" or "schmoopy" or "bunny" and so forth make me see red.
A friend of mine was once seeing a guy who decided one day that he wanted her to use a pet name for him. She called me so we could discuss his request. She is not a pet name kind of girl so this request caused some consternation for her. As far as she is concerned, people already have names, so why not use them. I never really liked the guy in question, and I was going through my Owen Wilson phase, so I suggested the pet name "Owen."
She tried that and surprisingly, the boyfriend didn't take to that very well. I believe his response was: "A PET name, not some other guy's name."
But now that I'm thinking about this, I don't take exception to "Hey Beautiful" or "Princess" or even "Sweet Thang", but I think that's mostly because I really like the guy who uses the first and the guy who uses the latter two names generally makes me blush and giggle with everything he says - even when it's as uninspiring as "hello."
Perhaps I just dislike the overly cute pet names - perhaps warm and fuzzy pet names incite a reaction in me that is the opposite of warm and fuzzy.
OK, I've thought it through, and I've identified my rules regarding pet names:
1. My girlfriends can use pretty much any pet name for me that they think is appropriate
2. Only certain men whom I consider close friends can call me pet names as long as the names are not overly cute and do not reek of small infant animal
3. Only JF is allowed to call me "baby"
4. If a guy has abs like JF - so impressively cut that I can wash my lingerie on them - I might suspend all the above rules.
Bottom line, to the plastic surgeon I met at that happy hour last week who tracked down my number and phoned me yesterday and called me "baby" no fewer than three times during our very short conversation, know that right before I hung up on you, I threw up a little in my mouth and had to look at naked pictures of JF to rid myself of the bad taste and the "ick."
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