Hello. My name is Aimee. Pronounced like Amy, but not spelled like it. Spelled like it sounds. A-I-M as in the toothpaste with double E’s at the end. It’s French for beloved. Folks misspell it all the time.
My most free-spirited college BFF recently spelled it Amy online. Ouch. So did the kindest boy I dated in high school. Ouch, ouch.
Another good friend from high school spells it Amiee. So close I can’t bear to tell him. Well, now he knows. Makes me feel a little Pure Prairie League coming on. Or Counting Crows. Wow. Did you even know the Counting Crows rendition existed until this post? Neither did I.
I haven’t seen these people in years, they’re all married with kids, and the spelling of my name is not a priority in their lives at this time.
We joke about it. My college friend has agreed I can call her Betty if she can call me Al. I have to wonder if she’s lived in California too long.
My kindest high school boyfriend explained he was so concerned about spelling everything else right in his comment that he misspelled the most important part. Aw. Great save, man.
People in my not-so-distant past have a habit of misspelling it too. How excusable is that? And if you add my last name, there’s no end to the butchery of what my husband calls Americanized German.
Whetstine. Pronounced like a damp mug, a wet stein. Members of my own family still get it wrong and I’ve been married 15 years.
More than one person has asked me if Aimee was the name I was given at birth. No, I changed it when I was 15. My real name is Joleisa.
Yes, of course it was my birth name! Had you there, didn’t I? As the story goes, Amy was a popular name when I was born in 1970. My mom saw it spelled Aimee in a magazine. The rest is history.
And it’s not that unique. Lots of people spell it that way. Like Aimee Mann. Okay, that’s all I can think of right now, but there are lots of others I’m sure.
In a particularly legalistic time of my life, I wanted everyone to get it right. So I took preventive measures when I sensed a misspell coming.
“It’s A-I-M-E-E. Like the toothpaste with two E’s,” I said to my victims. “W-H-E-T-S-T-I-N-E. Like a damp mug, a wet stein. Get it?”
That was working really well until I overheard my then two-year-old, the verbal parrot, muttering as he played with his toy trains, “My name is Aimee. A-I-M-E-E. Like the toothpaste with two E’s.”
Maybe the correct spelling of my name doesn’t matter all that much. Maybe it’s a luxury like privacy.
Spelling doesn’t seem to count these days unless it’s your resume, Scrabble, or Scripps National Spelling Bee. It’s not like we’re being graded. Those pesky misspellings are harmless. They just sting a little.
Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you.
I have called you by name; you are mine. from Isaiah 43:1 NLT
If Toni Basil and Debbie Harry morphed, joined forces with a male J Crew model on drums and backup, entered The Matrix, and made a music video, you’d get The Ting Tings’ That’s Not My Name. Thanks to this dynamic duo for the song that inspired the post title when I first heard it on Muzak in FroYo. It rocks.