‘You Should be VERY Careful About Such Things. People Like to Brag About Their Connections in D.C.’


Some people are touchy about the way you shorten their proper names. For example, Intel Jessicas (both Pressler and Coen) would prefer it if you didn't call them "Jessie." Intel Chris will actually slap you in the gonads if you call him "Topher." And don't even try to call Intel Dan "Danny Boy." ("Amiracle," however, is acceptable. Or simply "Peaches.") But even we were impressed by the lengths to which Elizabeth Becton, a paper-pushing Capitol Hill administrator in the office of Washington Democratic Representative Jim McDermott, went to school on another administrator on the perils of calling her "Liz." From an e-mail exchange, provided (by whom, we wonder?) to Politico.com:

If I wanted you to call me by any other name, I would have offered that to you. I think it's rude when people don't even ask permission and take all sorts of liberties with your name. This is a real sore spot with me ... Sounds like you got played by someone who KNOWS I hate that name and that it's a fast way to TICK me off. Who told you that I go by that name? They are not your friend ... They don't know me and perhaps they were PRETENDING to know me better than they do and pretended that I go by Liz. They did YOU a disservice. In the future, you should be VERY careful about such things. People like to brag about their connections in DC. It's a pasttime for some. It's also dangerous to eavesdrop, as you have just found out.

The entire exchange is fascinating. Also, hopefully, it will remind you that when you want to fire off a testy e-mail to that person in your office who can't bother to take the time to write the "ugh" in "though" and the "anks" in "thanks," you should probably just take a deep breath.

No name-calling [Shenanigans/Politico]