The other day one of the secretaries at my work came into my office to bring me my mail. As she walked into my office, she read my full name off of an envelope: "Erica Lynn [short and very common English last name]" Then she asked me what my new last name is going to be once I get married. I almost wanted to say I was keeping my maiden name just to make her realize that she shouldn't assume that a woman will always change her last name when she gets married. But I do plan on changing my last name, so I didn't want to lie to her. Plus, knowing this particular secretary fairly well, I know I'd get a whole heap of judgment about not changing my name and a barrage of questions such as "what about your children?" Again with the assumptions. So I told her the Mister's last name and then she said aloud: "Erica Lynn [short and very common Hispanic last name]." Swear to god, the next thing out of her mouth was this "eh" sound with a slight look of disgust, and a comment that it didn't flow as well as my maiden name but that "I'll have to make it work."
First of all, my new last name will "flow" with my first and middle names just as well as my maiden name. In fact, I think my new last name will actually sound a little bit better with just my first name than my maiden name does. Together my first name and new last name have a sort of singsong quality to them that my current name does not. So, she clearly doesn't know what she's talking about. Which can only lead me to think that the reason she thinks that my new Hispanic last name doesn't "flow" is because I'm not Hispanic and couldn't even pass as Hispanic if I tried. I mean, it's not like "Erica" is an uncommon name for Latinas, so it certainly can't be that I have a super Anglo first name that doesn't "go" (whatever that means) with a Hispanic last name.
Whatever. Since I already knew this particular secretary is pretty ignorant (don't even get me started on the misinformed things I heard her say during the Prop 8 campaign) I shouldn't really be surprised. But still. The nerve of people sometimes.