Michael Aaron

The Registry that Dare Not Speak Its Name

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The headline you just read is the hands-down winner from our online quest to rename the Salt Lake City Domestic Partner Registry since that moniker scared the bejeezus out of our dinosaur legislators this session.

The American Heritage Dictionary says that ?domestic partner? is: A person, other than a spouse, with whom one cohabits. Scary, indeed.

But it also has a usage note that I found interesting:

?Many people would now agree that a couple can consist of persons living together who are not married or who are not of opposite sexes. How to refer to such a couple, though, has posed an interesting challenge. Many new words have been coined and tested over the last 25 years, including spouse-equivalent or spousal equivalent; POSSLQ (person of the opposite sex sharing living quarters), pronounced (p˘os?el-kyoo?) and originally used as a U.S. Census Bureau designation; and companion or lifelong (or longtime) companion. But these have never been in or have fallen out of general use. Thus the linguistic situation seems to reflect the continuing flux of the social situation. Two other terms, significant other and domestic partner, however, have seen widespread use since at least 1985 as all-purpose words for describing a spouse or a lover. Over 75 percent of Usage Panelists feel these terms can be applied to members of either straight or gay couples. Domestic partner has been used by an increasing number of companies and organizations in drafting benefits plans that include all members of such relationships. The term is often shortened to partner, especially in unofficial situations.?

I can now see the Posselkyu Parade applying for permits to march down State Street. More power to them.

But don?t the other potential terms have an even more romantic (read more scary) connotation to them?

What to do, what to do.

Our readers came to the rescue with their suggestions, which we will forward to Mayor Becker?s personal email box:

?The Ruzicka Registry. Wouldn?t that just frost her panties? ?We?ve been Ruzicka?d? would take on a whole new meaning!?

?Can we call it The D-List? I?m sure Kathy Griffin won?t mind.?

?Let?s call it The Utah Family Cohabitation Registry or the Domicile Cohabitation Registry.?

?How about we just call it MARRIAGE?!?

?Why don?t we just call it the Packing List because Gayle and Chris will probably use it to load the first boxcars to Topaz when Paul Mero declares ?the final solution.??

?The RAINBOW ROSTER. Might as well rub it in Mr. Fruit Heights? ass-face.?

?As long as the intent and substance remain intact, they could call this thing the Elephant Dance Signup for all I care.?

?If you were to call it the Buttars-Bell Catalog nobody in the legislature would be able to understand what it is and it would be left alone.?

Others that I?ve heard: Bosom Buddies Book (though that was in a bar and Bosom later turned to Butt.) The Living Together But We Never Touch Or Have Sex We Promise Registry, or the Gay, Asexual, Yuppies, Lesbians, ENGAGEMENT Registry (GAYLE) (Yeah, a stretch), Better Halves Registry, or another of my favorites, Roommate in a Euphemism kind of way Registry.

I hope Ralph finds these helpful.

I think we now need to go on a rampage about the fact that the Utah Legislature is less about making laws (legislating) and more about moralizing. Preachify Posse? Or the fact that they are really just the Republican Party on a mission. Let?s change the sign on the doors to ?Republican Caucus.?

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