Ran into a person (singular) online who didn’t want to be put in any gender boxes — no he, she, it — uses the pronoun “they.”
Hey, I’m all for breaking out of any “box” you want. I’ve been gender confusing people my whole life. When strangers call and ask for some fucked-up pronunciation of “Kieran,” I make my voice as deep as possible. Long pause…
“I must have the wrong number…”
I’ve been early to business meetings with people I don’t know. It starts late, and people say, we are just waiting for “Kieran.”
(Deep voice) “I’m sitting right here…”
“Ohhhh….” very uncomfortable pause, no eye contact.
And yeah, I know it’s not the same thing as “they” is talking about. But it’s a sideways glance at that perspective. And right now it’s as close as I can get.
Anyway, I don’t care what gender you want to be or if you reject the notion of gender all together. I’m way past the dating age, and I don’t have to worry about picking a player from the wrong team. (I know, I know that’s a stupid, offensive thing to say — but fuck you it’s just a joke).
I’m fine with tagging people as “cis-gender” or “cis-whatever-the-fuck-you-want-to-say.” I’ll call myself an old married dude. I’m not going to introduce myself as “cis-hetero” just to please you. But if you call me that, I’d answer.
But when you go fucking with singular and plural — put me in the “don’t” pile. You are the one asking me to change my language. So, yes, I get to evaluate and judge whether I will accept the change. That’s how languages fucking work. If enough people agree wth you, the change gets made. If not, shit stays the same.
I’m not judging your gender identity. I’m choosing to be clear on singular versus plural. Language is already a confusing and fucked-up way to communicate. But until the chips in our heads can directly communicate with each other, that’s all we have. Let’s not make it worse than it already is.
I know I break a lot of the rules of English (and most of them are imposed bullshit rules that don’t make any sense) but goddamnit, we need singular and plural.
If “they” needs a ride, can I bring my 2-seater car or do I have to break out the mini-van?
If “they” is calling me, will 3-way calling work or do I have to get a conference line?
How many fucking people are coming to this party when “they” RSVP?
It can only be even more embarrassing and awkward when we have to clarify the answer to every one of those questions with every single request.
Look at this fucking shit, none of my subjects and verbs agree:
they is coming
they sits in back
they drinks champaign
It’s so fucked up, I can’t even say it out loud. And when I try to type it, fucking red lines and autocorrect have a shit fit.
Please don’t break the little grasp I have on my native tongue — or make me take 10 more minutes to type out one sentence because the fucking keyboard keeps “auto-correcting” it.
I get that “he” and “she” don’t fit. I can understand that “it” really means you are a scary fucking clown living in the sewer.
But unless you are a fully diagnosed schizo, let’s keep your pronoun singular.
Here’s some better suggestions:
“ahe” — pronounced like “ahi” as in ahi tuna. No gender identification, easy to spell, easy to say.
“qhe” — rhymes with khole. Memorable, unique and we need to take back “q” as a letter from that fucked up conspiracy about Hilary’s pedophilia ring in a DC pizzeria.
“nhe” — pronounced like knee. Might be confused for a body part, but at least I know we are only talking about one fucking “nhe.”
“suhe” — Ok scratch that one — sounds like we are calling a pig.
I’m sure if I spend 10-more minutes on this I could come up with 5 other singular variations on “x-he” (and yes “x-he” is horribly negative like a “has-been” he, but goddamnit x is just a fucking variable like in algebra — or are we fucking with math now too?)
You can be anything you want to be, but you can only be one of those things, and that’s why “they” sucks.
** Image stolen from this site:
You can go there to read their side of the story.