Monday, March 24, 2014

Mrs. Jeff Cutler?

You can call Gretchen "Mrs. Jeff Cutler."

Or call Jeff "Mr. Gretchen Kinder."

Or call us "Mr. and Mrs. Cutler."


Just don't call us later for dinner. Or dunch. Or cocktail hour.

Gretchen DID choose to keep her maiden name as her primary last name. She is still, according to the rule of law, Gretchen Lynne Kinder. She has no deep attachment to her surname, and in fact has not even seen or spoken with her father for 30 years. But, she is known by many people as "GK" and couldn't bear to let that moniker go. At least for now.  And she didn't want to be one of those people who said, "I'm Gretchen Kinder at work, but Gretchen Cutler when I sign up for new dump sticker at the DPW, and Mrs. Jeff Cutler when I make charitable donations..." Life is too short for such complications.

We're thinking about this now because we were shopping for a new car this weekend. A car salesperson asked for our names and, when we gave her the two separate names, she remarked, "That's so cool! You are so modern!"

"Really?!" thought Gretchen? "How is this modern? In 2014? In Massachusetts?"

In fact, Gretchen's friendship circle is such that the women who DO take their husband's last names tend to apologize for it. And she has two friends who took their hubby's surnames ONLY when their betrothed exclaimed not doing so would be a marriage deal breaker.

While Gretchen has ambivalence about it, there is definitely a part of her that wants to be known as Jeff's wife, she is thrilled that Jeff sees her retention of the "K" in "-gk-" as a sexy sign of power.

If you are the type who gets hung up about etiquette, you may address mail to us as Ms. Gretchen Kinder and Mr. Jeff Cutler (the lady always comes first).

If you are the type who seeks to needle couples about their modernity, please know we won't care if you address a card or gift to Mr. and Mrs. Jeff Cutler. So find another way to needle us.

PS: Thanks for the gifts.

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