Recently my friend, the ferret owner, who has been married for ten years commented, “I’ve never heard a couple with as many pet names for each other as you and your husband use.”
“What do you and your husband call each other?” I asked?
“Honey pie, sugar, other foodstuffs.”
“Is that code for another kind of hunger?” I teased.
She laughed. “He’s sweet.”
I remembered that my parents used to sign notes to each other, H.B. As a child, I guessed the initials stood for Honey Bunny. After all, that’s what Dagwood and Blondie called each other in the Sunday comics.
My parents insisted it was a secret code and refused to tell me if I’d guessed correctly. In retrospect, considering how their marriage ended, the initials probably stood for something far less complimentary.
My nicknames for my husband, the alien, are no secret. Snoo and Snurg (both variations on snuggle.) Then there are the nicknames based on his skills. When I want him to find something, he’s Boy-tective. If he puts generous amounts of cayenne on his dinner, he’s Dragon. When he finds room in the refrigerator for extra veggies that just had to come home from the farmer’s market, he’s Space Wizard. (His mother was furious with me when we got married because I took her fridge organizer.)
These are all positive names and I was clearly boring Ferret Owner Friend. So, I told her what I call him when he’s in a bad mood: Your Grouchiness.
“I’m going to borrow that one,” FOF said.