Note to self re: LDC and sleep deprivation

The lesbian nation may not have civil rights protections at a state or federal level; we may be grasping at essential family protections via marriage rights at a state-by-state level. In the rare cases where we do get them they’re under attack the moment they become established, and probably will be ’til the generation that’s now running around the playgrounds comes of age and runs the country. But sisters, we do have the Lesbian Double-Cross, and they can’t take that away from us.

Don’t play dumb; you know what I’m talking about. I like to call it the LDC for short: the scam pulled when the more numerically, logistically, or bureaucratically adept of the two of you calls the phone company, or the credit union, or the insurance company, ostensibly “on behalf of” the less adept of the two of you. Okay, “on behalf of” may be a little delicate. “Brazenly impersonating you” is a more accurate way to put it.

But who’s to blame us? My beloved was driven to this initially because, as an unmarried partner to me, she didn’t have access to some vital record, or decision-making capacity, or what have you. So she hung up the frickin’ phone, waited a beat, tweaked her voice, and called again “as” me. After that, the LDC became a habit. A matter of expediency. Micro-payback. They’ve driven us to it. I’m sure the brothers have the Gay Man Double-Cross, or GMDC, and who’s to blame them? I sez we’ll all stop when we get the frickin’ legal protections and access we deserve as god-fearing tax payers, and ’til then, it’s frontier justice.

Meanwhile, back in babyville. Here we are in the process of adding on the little peanut to our exceedingly exorbitant health insurance. The beloved began the process yesterday, being forced to employ the LDC to “be” me on the phone, since the health care is in my name, having originated with my job. Oh, and also since I have fractional marginal infinitesimal eptitude in these matters. So this morning — after we each had been awake nearly as many hours of the night that most people sleep — someone at the health insurance office called back, and she answered. The voice on the phone asked for me, and the beloved hazily said “Yes, just a moment, here she is.”

As she stretched the phone out toward me, she realized it was the health insurance people calling, and knew I would have absolutely no idea what the hell they were talking about; might even contradict random things she’d said the day before, to our certain doom. She thought fast, but not fast enough. She held the phone at arm’s length for a moment, composed herself, and returned the phone to her ear.

“Yes, this is she,” says my beloved, in a pinched, helium-high, Lily Tomlin-as-Ernestine kind of voice. At which point I double over in the kitchen and then try to remain out of sight, lest I botch the whole charade. Less than two weeks after blowing a nine-and-a-half pound child out her nether parts in under two hours at the hospital, my beloved went on to conduct the whole conversation this way. Is it any wonder I count myself lucky?

Granted, had she been less sleep-deprived, it might have occurred to her to have dropped her voice a little, which would have (a) created a better approximation of me, and (b) been vocally easier to sustain over the course of a conversation. Or she could have adopted some kind of accent, for entertainment value (Californians do have accents, even if we protest we don’t). But instead somehow she panicked and went high.

Regardless, she pulled it off, being after all a professional theater artist, and therefore in possession the requisite poise and focus. But we have each made a note to self: the LDC and sleep deprivation don’t mix. You TTC* gals and those en route to adoption out there, take note as well. As a safeguard, and to preserve the power of the LDC.

*TTC, for the uninitiated, stands for Trying To Conceive.

9 Responses to Note to self re: LDC and sleep deprivation

  1. Trista January 31, 2007 at #

    Oh, dear lord this was funny. I actually have tears coming out of my eyes. Kristin and I have had to resort to the LDC too many times to count, and yes, we’ve even had a few close calls like that. And one time where I was SURE it was the cable company who was asking for me and it was, um, not. In fact, it was someone who really did need to talk to ME and then “I” looked like an idiot for not knowing what the person was calling about.

  2. LesbianDad January 31, 2007 at #

    🙂

  3. LookyDaddy January 31, 2007 at #

    It was the phrase “blowing a nine-and-a-half pound child out her nether parts in under two hours” that made me make a sound loud enough to wake my children.

    Also, I tried the straight-man’s double cross once, and embarrasingly enough, I had to lower my voice to sound like my wife. Didn’t work anyway. Next time I’ll try it over the phone instead of in person.

  4. Vikki January 31, 2007 at #

    Thank you for giving a name to a phenomenon. I would not survive without the LDC. Luisa impersonates me often, sometimes, without even being asked to do so. While I realize that I am contributing to my own identity theft, it is such a relief when I hear the words “I took care of that for you”. There is a certain learned helplessness that can accompany the LDC, however. I find that I no longer even like to make my own doctor’s appointments.

    As I reread this comment, it really is no wonder my mother cut my corn off the cob for me until I was 16.

  5. Liza January 31, 2007 at #

    It is all about guerilla justice, my friend!

    In our house, I am responsible for all things long-term financial, including many complicated rollovers of 401ks and IRAs. If ever you need the LDC, it is then. Fooey on all that paperwork! I have even created an LDC email address for the mail I need from these people, that my poor sweetie does NOT want to get and would proably fear is nasty phishing email if she did. (Although she wouldn’t call it that. She’d just worry, and delete it.)

  6. Vikki January 31, 2007 at #

    Creating a separate email account, now that is taking it to the next level.

    I’m making a mental note to myself to ask my girlfriend if she has an LDC email account in my name 🙂

  7. ShirleyMalmborg January 31, 2007 at #

    So totally f’n funny, it feels like we’re right there with you trying to muffle that snorting sound that sometimes escapes when one is trying not to laugh.

  8. artsweet February 2, 2007 at #

    This is brilliant. Absolutely brilliant.

    You know you need LDC detox when you’re asked for your birthdate and SSN on a form and you automatically start filling in your partner’s info… not that I’ve done that. Oh no.

  9. LesbianDad February 2, 2007 at #

    LDC detox! Which might start a little something like, “I admit I am powerless over the LDC, and my partner’s life has become all together too well-managed.”

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