The Rules of Namedropping According to the Truly Rich Lady

Names evoke power. Never invoke unless you can handle it.

Dear Truly Rich Lady,

What are your thoughts about name dropping? Is it okay that I do it sometimes? Like when I am desperate to book a table at the hot new restaurant that serves only burritos and burrata?

Yours Truly,

You Don’t Know Me

To The Unknown Person: 

I don’t know you. But I do know this young woman who works at the most chi-chi place of all, the land of dreams for Truly Rich Ladies, where millions of pesos are happily charged on credit cards paid for by their compliant—or guilty—husbands. My young friend tells me she never ever mentions The Name, that happy place where she works, if she can help it. She hates being asked for discounts, or to be first in line for the release of the next big thing.


Rule Number One: Names evoke power. Never invoke unless you can handle it.

My young friend knows how the mention of The Name immediately changes how people react to her, which is why she never tells people where she works.

At a party, the Unwanted Social Butterfly would usually dismiss my friend as just another young thing in a sea of young things. But when Butterfly gets wind of where my young friend works, the mood changes in a breath. Butterfly becomes friendlier, inquisitive, and also touchy. Young woman hates it, and that’s why she prefers not to drop The Name. It just invites unwanted attention and untrue intentions. The butterfly, like all the party insects who are seduced by The Name, now wants to be my young friend’s best friend. “It is so gross and fake, Si-si!” she tells me. “I’d rather be liked for who I am and never because of where I work.” (I think she is having a crisis.)



Rule Number Two: Brand names are for those who want to be branded.

To the Truly Rich, the obvious is death. To point out that you are wearing a Shanel midi dress, a Bugo Hoss blazer, and BanoloMlahnik stilettos as you take a bite out of your Ladoree macaron and sip Pereyay water, and then check your Eye Fone Eks in your Bougie Buttons bag is unneeded. I can see it.

And what of the person who makes money off promoting companies, products, and such on social media? (Is this really a legitimate occupation now?) I guess they have swallowed all pride, and are okay about being a walking and talking billboard. And I for one wouldn’t want to look.


Rule Number Three: But in case of emergencies, you may drop a name.

In times of need, we all call out to a higher power. Personally, I call out to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and also Saint Anthony (I lose so many things).

In a very recent moment of desperation, when I drove myself to this unfortunately located restaurant and could not, for the love of the Most Sacred Heart of Mary, find a near enough parking spot (there was no valet!), I whispered the name of the owner of the weird compound.

To the attendant: “Sir, I am here for a meeting with the Owner of This Compound. Please, help me for I am an incapable parallel parker. And also he, the Owner of This Compound, would not appreciate that I could not meet him at our designated time of eating because I have been delayed.”

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Well, that caused a minor hubbub. They shooed away other cars, so that I could slide into two parking spaces in front of the entrance with ease. After remembering to secure the handbrake (I always forget!), I did a quick prayer to Saint Anthony for helping me find parking.


Rule Number Four: But never ever employ a host of names.

I love being with senior citizens because they have discounts! My Sunday scoop of gelato ice cream in a thick wafer cone becomes 25 percent less expensive because of their advanced age. But sometimes the use of this privilege can be too much. Do you know that, if you dine with seven seniors, they can all use their cards? Sorry, hard-working restaurateurs. But I really should not complain for I am eating gelato right now.

Anyway, anything too much can be awkward. When the need to name drop arises, I would never say: “Do you know who I am? I am Si-si Coo of the Manila, Korea, and German Kuzes, who originally came from across the glittering sea, and were also descended from Venus herself? I can buy this place! Your friends! And you!?”

Never! I would never say that because half of it is not true (we are descended from Laverna!), and also because declaring a string of names is unsophisticated. The need to mention even just one name, the act of announcing your self yourself, the desire to draw attention—these are all brazenly boorish.

I mean, so what if you are Last Name Important or First Name Famous? I still don’t know you. Because, who cares?


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