greetings and salutations

One of the less exciting things I've had to do at my new job is sort through some merged lists of contacts and delete all the duplicates. I spent some major hours deduping. I am sure you all are jealous.

Because deduping is such not-exciting work, I keep thinking about random things that show up in this list. Like, for example, how awesome is "Buffalo Nickel" for a street name? How do you pronounce Marylva? Why did that person decide to hyphenate Smith-Jones?

Some of the lists had salutations - maybe you call them 'prefixes' or even 'titles.' It's the Mr./Mrs./Ms./Miss thing. Sometimes I have to figure out if people living in the same house might be related, and how I should address them so we aren't sending 4 newsletters to the same family. That is about as exciting as this task gets.

I'm not as able to multitask as I was pre-fallingdownaflightofstairs, but I sure did get some good pondering in as I perused the list. Mostly I focused on the differences between Ms. Mrs. and Miss. By the time I'd graduated from college, I stopped using Miss because it seemed so juvenile and because I was working with academics who tended not to take "Miss Nonprofit Staff" quite as seriously. So I was Ms. for a while, when designating my own salutation. Wedding invitation etiquette demanded use of Miss a little bit, and I wondered if I was offending any women in a similar situation as mine - not married, but not wanting to tout the 'Miss' either.

How long as Ms. been around? I used to think it was a relatively new designation for divorced women. Miss was unmarried, Mrs. was married, Ms. was divorced. Widows somehow slipped under the radar - probably because I didn't know any and as a junior/high schooler, I didn't have much concept of mortality other than that of grandparents and other old people. (Granted, that all changed after Sarah got pummeled by an out-of-control Ford Explorer.)

I like being a Mrs. and I kinda 'miss' (pardon the pun) seeing it in front of my new name. I like being married, I'm proud of my husband, and I don't think it's a professional hindrance in my particular circles. Most people who write me are actually writing 'us' and then they put Mr. and Mrs. - but when it's just me, it's just me. So if you're ever in the mood to address something to me, tack a Mrs. in front of it, and really make my day. I wouldn't even mind dups!

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