Thursday, March 06, 2008


I just exchanged about five or six e-mails with a business contact. Normally, by e-mail two or three, I'm signing them as LJ, especially if the e-mails are informal (which these were).

But this person kept addressing me as Lindsey, so I kept signing them as Lindsay. I almost went with LindsAy just to get the point across.

This is the business world, okay? Aren't we supposed to be winning friends and influencing highly effective people in 90 seconds or something? Step One: Spell my name right. I know it's not the only name in the world. I know we're all busy. But just because your name has three letters in it doesn't mean that you don't need to at least try to spell everyone else's the right way. It's lazy. That is one of the quickest ways to get under my skin and/or off on the wrong foot, business world or otherwise.

Another business associate used to completely butcher my name. I can understand Lindsey; it's just one letter. But when you start dropping Z's and Y's up in there (as in Lynzi, Linsi, Linzi or my personal favorite - Lensay) I'm going to want to correct you.

I mean, you see who the e-mail is from before you even see the e-mail itself. There it is plain as day. Lindsay. Am I OCD for double-checking the spelling of someone's name if there is even a question about it in my mind? It's someone's NAME, for crying out loud. It doesn't get more personal than that. I just think it's an easy way of showing that you care or value a person if you take the time to spell it right (especially if it's easy to misspell). Maybe that's just me.

Oddly enough, I can make my peace with calling people by the wrong name - after all, there's a lot of people out there and sometimes your mind goes blank. But more than twice and I'm going to judge you. For example:
Forgivable Up To Two Times: People confuse one of my coworkers and me all the time. We both have short brown hair, are insanely good-looking, started around the same time, and our names are very similar. We're used to it, and sometimes to be funny we'll call each other by the wrong name on purpose (when we're in a group I'll call her Lindsay just to throw everyone off). But we have conferred and know who around here is too lazy to think/care and who just makes accidental slips.
Unforgiveable No Matter When or Where: Last week someone looked right at me and called me another name that doesn't even sound like mine. Icing on the Cake: I was wearing a name tag. LAZY!

I don't think I'm asking for the moon here, do you? I guess we can debate this two-fold: there's spelling someone's name incorrectly, then there's calling him/her the wrong name altogether. Offensive? Not so much? Thoughts?

P.S.: Lensay/Lynzi/Lindsey ran five miles last night. This is worth noting because it's the longest she's ever run by herself.


  1. um, how long have you worked there?? calling you the wrong name after a month is completely unacceptable.

    during Camp, I used to get bent out of shape if I couldn't remember a camper's name after an hour or so! it's not rocket science, it's a common courtesy!

  2. one more thing -- it's not like your name is chaqunitarious or something ridiculous. COME ON.

  3. Leslie, calm down. It will be ok. Your friends still love you.

    -Wes Barnes

  4. 1. Almost two years and I agree. It got old, so we made it funny, and now we're coming up on it getting old again.

    2. My campers were all so impressed that I could call them by name by TT2 - but within the first hour? Dang. No wonder you got HCC :)

    3. Jenn, you know my middle name is actually Chaqunitarious. That's why I go by Lindsay.

    4. Look at you Bondses. I'm glad you both have strong opinions on this already, cause if you didn't, they'd surely arise after more than one person puts 2 Ts on Elliot.

  5. Dear Lindsay,

    I run into this problem A LOT. Everyone spells my name Megan, Meaghan, Meagan, Meegan...the list is endless. There's a Megan in my office and we look nothing alike, but quite often we receive each other's e-mail and voicemails. Come on people - check your e-mail address or ask for a last name to clarify!

    Also, there are two girls in my office, who both went to Auburn, interned together and started at the same time. They look nothing alike and their names are nothing alike, but some of my colleagues don't realize who's who.


    Your's dearly,


  6. Today I snapped and went with LindsAy. Then she stopped using my name altogether.

  7. Meghan is such an interesting one, as is Lindsay. My personal favorite (although not a person) is Magen's Bay in St. Thomas. Beautiful beach, and good name. I have a friend that goes a little overboard with spelling it Meghaan.

    Lindsay can also go many ways. I think Lindsay is the most common, but I might be wrong. The only other one I like that my friend uses is Linsey.

    My rant is done.

  8. Update: apparently there's no apostrophe. It's just Magens Bay. So I guess it's not all that similar.


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