If not now, when?

One American woman. Twenty acres and a 1650 farmhouse in Tuscany. Random introspection and hilarity, depending on the day.

07 November 2006

A Rose by Any Other Name

In "ye ole day job," it's sometimes unnerving for me that everyone seems to know me. I'm a pretty public figure at work, and it doesn't surprise me to have people who I can't quite place walk up to me and know my name, three random facts about me, and probably be able to recount some story from a past interaction. Minor celebrity would be overstating it, but I'm pretty visible to a broad cross-section of people.

People who know me REALLY well know I'm NOT actually an extrovert, I just play one on TV. My inner-spirit is definitely an introvert.

Italy has fed that inner introvert. Maybe it's the remote hilltop. Maybe it's the time for reflection. Maybe it's early menopause (HAH!)

I think it's fascinating that here, so many people know OF me ... I'm still generically "the American," "the crazy woman living alone on the hilltop" or alternately, "the foreigner" ... and while are all particularly kind and patient with me, very few know (*or USE) my name. They might feel they are being respectful, but ...

... I can go weeks on end without hearing my name spoken aloud. I might be "bella" or "amica" (beautiful or friend), but very rarely my own name. It's unsettling and yet quite remarkable. I am simultaneously celebrity and completely anonymous: not a specific person, just a "presence," a representative of incongruous ideals (that I may or may not embody.)

It's amazing how much I miss it: my name, one that I never quite felt exactly suited me. And now, I crave it like caffeine.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

it seems that there is a little bit-o-norm in all of us.

5:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To me, you are my wonderfully open and kind friend. I would say your name three times really loud right here and now, but I know you want to keep your identity secret. SOOOOOO...
Just know I am saying your name loud and clear...

9:25 PM  

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