I spent several hours on the phone with Expedia today, because the airlines changed the times of my flights, and they were no longer available.
And the nice lady dealt at Expedia spent a long time figuring out how to get me and my husband to Colorado for Christmas, which, at this point, wasn't easy for them, but we got it done. And actually, the timing works better on these flights than the earlier ones (that I bought two months ago).
I had to be on hold several times, and every time she came back from talking to the airlines, or talking to her supervisor, or whatever else it was that she had to do to get my flights working, she said, "Hello, Marsha, I'm sorry for keeping you on hold for so long."
This phrase made me laugh the first time she said it. Especially because the first few times, she corrected herself with a "Marsha - Mar-she-ah - Marcy - Marcia" (for those of you who don't know, my name is pronounced "Mar-SEE-ah"). But by the 12th time, she wasn't even noticing that she was mispronouncing it.
This made me almost sad that I'd told her that she didn't have to call me Ms. Pink Shoe. (No, that's not my last name. But it's all you're getting for now.) I'd rather hear Ma'am, which I hate, than my first name mispronounced.
Now, I don't expect phone-answers from online travel sites to be paid enough to remember my name. I actually feel badly when I correct people, especially service people that I'll never see again. But unfortunately, it's instinct for me, when I hear the name "Marsha" to reply, "Sorry, it's Mar-See-Ah."
After I remind people that my name is pronounced the same as Garcia, but with an M, they remember it. But Garcia is a common last name, and it's almost never mispronounced. If someone said "Garsha," people would think that they were idiots. (Actually, thinking of it, one of my bridesmaid's last names is Lopez, another common last name, yet I've heard people try to rhyme her last name with Ropes.)
As an added hint as to how my name is pronounced, I throw a large accent over the I in my name... but people rarely seem to notice.
When I hear the word "Marsha," I have memories of a line of people saying "Marcia, Marcia, Marcia" (a la Jan Brady) to me, thinking they're cute and original. I think about a boy from high school who had a crush on my who could never pronounce my name correctly - MAR-see-ah, instead of Mar-SEE-ah. I remember thousands of role calls and telemarketers confidently saying my first name and mangling it.
Even though the mispronunciation of my name completely distresses me, I wouldn't change it for anything. I think it's beautiful and unusual and fits me. And I love that my name reminds me of my Italian heritage.
I just wish people would realize that there's no way that "ci" makes a "sh" sound.