Monday, February 18, 2008

Woozie Boozie!

Not woozy boozy (long oo’s)—your state after too much to drink. My birth mother Helen coined this cute expression. It’s pronounced woojee boojee (short oo’s, as in the word wood). Mind you, this is the same mother who told me I did not inherit any of my word fun and pun tendencies from her.

Woozie boozie is sort of an adult kitchy-kitchy-coo. It’s something to say when a friend or loved one does something adorable or needs support. It’s ooey gooey love without the tickle under the chin. It says, “You’re so cute,” or “Let me support you, hug you.”

There is no reason to stop this kind of verbal syrupiness just because a person grows up. It doesn’t matter what you call it or how you do it; adults need motherly little there-there’s and cheek pinches from their friends and families, too. Of course, not everyone can stand that much mushiness, certainly not my cats who run off when I woozie them once too many.

Helen signed all her letters with xo’s and WBs for woozie boozie. It has become an family in-joke. We woozie everything, and when Helen died, I got her closest friend, brother, and my husband and I glass heart ornaments for our Christmas trees engraved Woozie Boozie. A world without Helen was bad enough, but a world without woozies is not a place I want to live

Terms of endearment come naturally to me. I have to restrain myself not to call friends honey, dear, and sweetie. Some don’t mind and do it themselves; other’s react a little like my cats or at least a sour puss when I call them “names.”

Pet names, secret phrases—they are one of the charms of love in all its forms. When I was growing up, my adoptive parents called me Punkin—never Pumpkin with the second P. I think we tend to become what we’re called and constantly affirmed, as I was definitely their pun kin, the way I play with words unmercifully. If you become what you’re called, you’d think my sweetest endearments would be grabbed like the last dollar before payday.

Here’s some homeplay (the opposite of homework). What were your nicknames or favorite love words over the years? For a while my sister called me Jobie. Lots of people call me Joycie. I have a crazy affection for hon. (I still have an urge to name an especially docile dog Attila the Hon.)

How have these names and labels influenced you? And how about your nicknames and love words for others? Flash back and forward again with some cool insights.

Have fun with it!


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