So, in anticipation for graduation we had to fill out these phonetic name cards to hand to the reader as we walk, proudly, bounding, bouncing, what have you, across the SPAC stage. The phonetic name cards were handed to us during our Graduation Fair about 3 weeks prior to graduation. Grad Fair = nasty college errands that no one wants to do — outstanding library books, bursar charges, career services “is here for life,” and of course, phonetic name cards. Upon reaching the desk to fill out the cards I implored the woman to help me phonetically write out Caroline so that my name would not be read as “Carolyn.” I also went through some effort to make sure my last name was also in tip-top shape to be read correctly. The woman showed me the card that had something like “Car-o-LINE” written on it and I was pleased, took my complimentary mini Tootsie pop (that I may or may not have enjoyed when I was tucked in bed watching 30 Rock later that night) and headed out of Grad Fair.
So, three weeks later and I pick up my typed-out phonetic name card and of course it simply says, “Caroline” and the wrong phonetic spelling of my last name. I decided to fix, with a pen, my last name’s phonetic error and simply leave “Caroline” as was….if they slip up and say “Carolyn” then, whatever.
So, here we go, friends from freshmen year all in line to hand our cards to the reader and walk proudly across the stage. I hand mine to the reader, set my shoulders back, ready to bound into the arms (handshake) of the College’s president, and the reader reads, “Caroline” as “Catherine.” Well, Catherine, congratulations to you; I’m sure you did a great job these past 4 years. As for Caroline, does that mean she (I) didn’t officially graduate? Does that mean I get to go back? A girl can dream.