About

Nicknames

• Shanni/Shan (my mother calls me these)
• Shanti (my partner calls me this)
• Tai-Tai (high school nickname)

○ One girl, Aicha, she was from Mali, liked to call me Tai-Tai, but from her lips, it sounded like titty, a common lowbrow term for a certain part of the female anatomy, and well, one day in the cafeteria, she yelled that name so loud at me that all the jocks, or male offspring of wealthy white men, really, the guys who wore Northface fleece with khaki shorts whether it was spring or winter and the fucking birkenstocks though; they all turned and laughed at me. I don’t like it when people yell my name.

• Elizabeth (my made-up name)

○ This is the name I seem to always give to men who pester me on the street for my phone number. I get anxious, and it just pops out my mouth. *pop* Sometimes, I get disbelief. “Elizabeth? What?!” That is my name…. “Ain’t nevametno black girl call Elizabeth.” A first time for everything.

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