Written by Maggie the Cat
See, my best friend and I work at the same store,
albeit on different days, so we write each other
notes for entertainment. One Thursday night I was
really bored and couldn't wait to go home and watch
Homicide, so I wrote her...a Homicide note.
One note--my friend's name is Shabniz Kurji
(Shab-neez Kur-gee), and she is Muslim.
Hey. Hey, you. Yeah, I know you can hear me. Stop
pretending you don't.
Meldrick, she can't hear you. We're just words on
Yeah, well, Bayliss, she can hear us in her head,
can't she? I mean, she knows us. She been to see
the Baltimore poh-leece before.
FRANK: If I were you, guys, I'd make use of these
handy name-tags to precede your sentences. It'll
make it easier on all of us.
LEWIS: Yeah, fine, Frank. But she still ain't
MUNCH: Well, that's because you're talking to her
like she's a dog. She's not a dog, Meldrick--and
even dogs have names. By not using her name you're
reducing her to a faceless entity, a statistic, a
mere passer-by in the grander scheme of things.
LEWIS: I don't wanna use her name.
HOWARD: Why's that, Meldrick? Wouldn't be because
she's a WOMAN, huh?
FELTON: No. He just can't pronounce it.
PEMBLETON: (There, that's better than 'FRANK'.) You
know, there _is_ a school of thought which holds the
belief that a name is the seat of personal power.
Speak someone's name, aloud, and you've just robbed
them of a bit of their soul.
BAYLISS: Oh, yeah, like, uhhh...Rumplestiltskin, right?
FELTON: I think 'Rumplestiltskin' is easier to
pronounce. What kinda name _is_ this, anyway?
LEWIS: It's Muslim. Like 'Rahim" or 'Rashida' or--
LEWIS: I ain't even gonna dignify that, Munch.
FELTON: Shaaab-nyz. Sha-buh-neez. Shub-neece.
HOWARD: Beau, quit it. You're embarassing her. It's
HARD having a funny name nobody can say.
PEMBLETON: Oh, and you would know, Kay Howard? What
sort of linguistic moron has tripped over the ringing
syllables of _your_ name?
HOWARD: Nobody, _Frank_. I'm just _saying_, huh?
BAYLISS: I remember, in grade school, the class bully
used to call me Tim Payless. He thought it was
FELTON: What did _you_ think?
BAYLISS: Uh, for as long as he was bigger than I was,
I thought it was hysterical. Then in sixth grade I
had a growth spurt, and, y'know, I just didn't find
it all that funny anymore. Neither did he.
MUNCH: Oh yeah? Try growing up with a name like John
Munch. The _least_ annoying moniker I've ever been
saddled with was when one wag dubbed me "Toilet
Eater". Get it? John Munch? Yeah, I thought it was
lame too. But it stuck. Right in my craw.
BAYLISS: What can you really do with a name like
"Shabniz Kurji", though?
FELTON: Is _that_ how you pronounce it?
PEMBLETON: Well, there's an entire range of words
which rhyme with "eeze"...Shabsqueeze, Shabcheese....
FELTON: Shabfleas! Okay, okay--I'm sorry. I couldn't
LEWIS: Yeah, yeah, whatever. That still don't change
the fact, though.
BAYLISS: _What_ fact, Meldrick? You've been cranky
from the start. Now what could Miss--it _is_ 'Miss",
right? Okay--Miss Kurji here have done to inspire
such hostility in you?
MUNCH: Yeah, she seems like a nice enough lady,
despite being descended from Ishmael and Hagar. *grin*
LEWIS: I don't wanna say in front of everyone.
BAYLISS: Then stop bothering her! Miss Kurji, I'm
really sorry. I've gotta apologize for my fellow
detective here. Since he obviously has some sort of
unresolved personal problem, we'll get him to stop
harassing you. Sorry.
LEWIS: I just don't see what business it is a
y'all's, that's all.
FELTON: Shab-niz. Shabniz. Is _that_ right?
Shabniz...Kur-gye? Kur-jye? Jesus, her last name is
just as weird!
GIARDELLO: And just what is it I find my detectives
doing on this bright and no doubt homicidal morn?
PEMBLETON: Just conversing with an erstwhile visitor
to the Box, Gee. Allow me to introduce Miss Shabniz
MUNCH: She's a Moslem. What? Oh, sorry, Miss Kurji.
Gee, she's a M_u_slim. There. Satisfied? You're
GIARDELLO: Welcome, Miss Kurji. And what are you in
the Box for?..._Nothing_?
BAYLISS: Well, Gee, it was Lewis' idea.
FELTON: Yeah, we just kinda found here here. She
seems to like it.
GIARDELLO: Is this true, Detective Lewis? Has this
young lady been detained for no legal reason?
LEWIS: It's all true, Gee. But I _got_ a reason, see?
Only I can't say it 'round you all, 'cause then I'd
get my ass busted.
HOWARD: Well, that cleared THAT up.
Next week: Will Beau finally say your name right?
Does Bayliss want to be your friend? What the hell
_is_ Lewis' problem, anyway?