Boyfriend and I do not have fixed pet names for each other. If, for example, I was continually called ‘Snuggle Pants’ or ‘Boo Boo Face’ or even ‘Sweetie’, I think I’d vomit.
No, Boyfriend and I have a far better arrangement wherein we call each other whatever unflattering sound best sums up how we’re feeling at that second. This often leads to entirely disgusting names of a monstrosity that regularly tips us over the edge into hysteria.
Here are a few common names:
You see what I mean?
On occasion something might unwittingly meaningful might slip out, but generally they are just sounds with no assigned meaning. They are without exception two syllable words; for some reason they just fall out of our mouths that way with no need for thought or conscious embellishment.
I think these words are very dependent on context and are formed with our brains’ subconscious cross-referencing with the connotation of certain phonology, as opposed to semantics. For example, when I’m mad I might use plosives with sharp consonant clusters like ‘PINKy!’, and when I’m lovey I’m more likely to use the soft, labial ‘Buggy’ with its sluGGishly draGGing dipthong. It’s basically motherese…only he does it too and I’m not sure who started it.
I think this habit developed from our bedtime word association game wherein he’s say something like ‘I’ve left my spectacles in the living room’ and I’d say ‘You left your TESTICLES in the living room?!’. Or ‘I dropped my ring’ – ‘I’m Lord of the Rings’ – ‘You’re Lord of the Quims’…and so on and so on ad nauseum.
Boyfriend often says that his vocabulary and general eloquence has greatly improved since we got together. This childish game has obviously caused our brains to exercise and strengthen the part that makes lightning fast phonological connections we don’t even notice, which is why word games are so important to the developing mind of a child.
Despite all these many many horrible names for each other, in the time we have been together it has become tradition that when I wrap our picnic sandwiches in foil, I label them ‘Buggy’ and ‘Buckle’. The funny thing is that we very rarely refer to each other by these names. In fact, when wrapping our sandwiches I often have to stop and remember who is who. They are like our official titles that we consciously use to differentiate between each other, and the other names are emotional blurts of expression for the other. We’ve always said that ‘Buggy’ and ‘Buckle’ are what we’d have engraved on our wedding rings. And we’re only half joking.