If I received an award, I would trip onstage going up to accept it. When I won the Union Terrace Elementary School hopscotch tournament, I got yelled at in the bathroom by a roving pack of angry girls who were pissed a "white bitch" stole the notoriously Latina title. And yesterday, when I found out one of my poems is going to be published in the 2008 edition of The Gallatin Review, I knew something was about to go awry.
I opened up the tentative Table of Contents for the Review and found this:
For some unknown reason I am the only author without a last name.
I immediately broke into a neurotic sweat. Anxiety-laden quesions dashed through my mind: Are people going to think I withheld my last name on purpose? Will they assume it's a pseudonym? How am I going to prove to my friends and parents that I actually did write the poem and not some other Jessica? Who the fuck do they think I am, freakin Madonna?!?!
It's just so classic. I finally get something published and my last name is mysteriously left out. Not that I mind anonymity, but for fuck's sake, In a Hotel in Paris by JESSICA???
Luckily I e-mailed the Gallatin Writing Director and requested she put my last name in. Thankfully I caught her before the book went to press. I don't think I could bear the thought of my first ever published poem floating around New York City under the most-popular-name-of-1988, Jessica.