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Hey, You!

What’s in a name? A lot. 

Your name is one of the first things to identify you. Imagine if Barack Obama was named Steve, or if Steve Jobs was named Henderson. Would we still have a president and a genius who blessed us with the magical iPhone? I don’t necessarily believe your name determines who you will be, but it is your first point of identification. You’re told your name over and over when you’re a child, and it is how you introduce yourself as an adult.
I like my name. I was named after Sarah in the Bible. Sure, she didn’t have a child till she was 90 years old, but she was said to have been quite beautiful and she’s the mother of all nations…so I’ll take that namesake. 

I went through a rebellious stage in high school where I dropped the “h” but I came to my senses by the time the school had to print my diploma. My name is not hard to pronounce, so it baffles me when someone forgets my name. Angers me, actually. I admit I meet many new people each week and I don’t remember most of their names, but that doesn’t really bother me. But when someone forgets MY name, it annoys me. 
Last week, I ran into someone I had met before, someone I had spent over an hour having a tete-a-tete with. Within two minutes of this run-in, he unexpectedly asked, “What was your name again?” He might as well have slapped me across the face. 

To make matters worse, I had just been introduced to someone new in front of this guy…just a few minutes prior to the figurative slap. Unless this guy suffers from serious short-term memory loss, there’s no excuse. He might as well just said to me, “You’re forgettable.” 
Homeboy made a couple of mistakes, but his biggest crime is not mastering the art of the “Hey, you!” I’m about to let out some secrets, but after all, I’m here to impart knowledge. The “Hey, you!” is the go-to for situations when you don’t remember someone’s name. 
It’s not that I have a bad memory; I just don’t always pay attention to what is happening in front of me. I prefer the dream world in my head to the real one. Sarah world is so much more entertaining. So on occasions when I have indeed escaped to my alternate universe and can’t recall a person’s name, I greet them with the “Hey, you!” 

I came up with this brilliant technique quite a few years ago. I became an expert when my friend Lisa and I decided to crash a high school reunion. We were bored on a Saturday night and our favorite bar had been taken over by a lame high school reunion, so of course we had to crash it and see what we could get up to. If you think we copied Wedding Crashers, you’d be mistaken. This act of brilliance occurred years before the movie came out. Copycats. 
At first, people were a little skeptical. The alumni were several years older than us, but we stuck to our story. We grabbed some drinks, found the cutest guy in the room, and went to work. We didn’t plan the stories that came flying out of our mouths…our improv would have made Tina Fey proud. 

Our MO was walking up to a good looking guy (then we ran out of those and settled for the rest), giving him an enthusiastic “Hey, you!” while slyly glancing at his name tag. We’d then sell him on a story about being in his Algebra class or some such nonsense. If he wasn’t buying it, we kicked in high drama gear. 

At one point, we staged an argument where one of us was angry at the other one for stealing her boyfriend. When we realized we had an audience, we escalated the show. I believe the follow-up stories involved dropping out of high school, being addicted to drugs, and a showdown involving a major chick fight. We may have left the guys speechless, but they were entertained. 

We turned a royally boring high school reunion into an Upright Citizen’s Brigade show. And we got free drinks.
There are ways to recover from forgetting someone’s name, but just keep this one rule in mind: don’t forget MINE, jackass!
Featured Image by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

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