In a public place.
Surrounded by other people. Respectable people. Parents. Former-child actors. Strippers.
I'm not sure who heard me utter the words. Whether anyone was listening is beside the point. I heard myself, which was bad enough. Little Hottie? LITTLE HOTTIE? WTF, self? Who are you and what are you doing calling your son, "little hottie?"
I thought fast and did the following:
A. Tried to pretend I said something else.
"...I mean. Um. "Little Scotty! Yes, this is my son, Scott, er Scotty! And look how small he is. I mean, little! He's a little Scotty! A little-bit Scotty...."
B. Explained to Archer in a whisper that although I thought he was an attractive child and very sweet, I didn't think of him as a "little hottie."
C. Placed oversized sunglasses over eyes before exiting the premises sans cart.
I drove home that afternoon in silence. Stereo on mute. Windows up. No making silly faces at Archer in the rear-view mirror. "Sheesh," I thought. "I really need to think before I speak." I tried to remember the last time I even called anyone, "little hottie." Highschool, perhaps? Junior High?
Unfortunately it wasn't the first time I bit my tongue with an oops-nickname. Several months ago I accidentally (I swear I was not conscious of what I was saying) called Archer, "sexy." Ah! Kill me now! PLEASE!
Much to my relief I recently found out that I'm not the only one who accidentally calls our child inappropriate names.
The other day while wrapping Archer up in his towel, fresh out of the bath, the huz called Archer "butt boy." Yes, you heard me. BUTT BOY. As in:
"Come here, butt boy! Let's go get you dressed."
I peeked my head into Archer's room.
"Um, DUDE? Did you just call Archer, butt-boy?"
"Yes you did!"
"Yes! You called him butt boy! Ahahahahahaha. Oh, man."
"No. I called him something else. Bok Choy, I think."
"Bok Choy? Yeah. Nice try."
I suddenly felt slightly better about my "little hottie" incident. Not only is "little hottie" a little less embarrassing than "butt boy" but I had a better (and more stealth) cover than Bok effing Choy.
"By the way, from now on, Archer's name is "Scotty" when we're at Whole Foods on 3rd Street."
And by the grace of all things embarrassing, Butt-Boy Sr. nodded understandably.
That night we went back to calling Archer, Archer. You know, just to be safe. Hopefully it sticks.