As stated before, the French have a thing for titles. They also have a thing for paper work. And they also have a thing for titles on paperwork. So when you fill out any form here it's Madame or Mademoiselle or Monsieur. And then there's the name thing.
This afternoon I was to the Catholic Board of Education HQ to apply for a job for next year. While the other job I've found is cool, it's neither enough hours nor enough money. In order to avoid going back to my former place of employment (badly run), I'm looking at other options. Thus today's excursion.
Of course, despite having a copy in hand of my cv, they asked me to fill out a form. It looked like many other forms I've seen. First line says name, second says first name, and third says maiden name. I'm not a read ahead kind of person. When I see name, I write mine. Then I write my first name. Then I see maiden name. Hmm. Well, my maiden name is my name. What they really wanted for name was Husband's name. Which I don't use, for no particular reason other than I like mine, I rarely have to spell it even here (Husband cannot say the same) in France despite or perhaps because it's such a basic anglosaxon name. Furthermore, I've gotten very used to mine over the years and couldn't see any point to changing it. Particularly since in France, you don't really change it. Strangely enough, in this land where nearly all women use their husband's name, it's for fun and games only. It has no legal value at all and you don't do anything to change it, you just start using it the day you get married. Or you don't, in my case. A woman is legally Maiden Name for life. It is on all official documents, driver's license, passport and the like.
I've learned not to provide Husband's name anymore because once you do, even if you don't use it, everyone uses it for you. I actually sent back my health card twice because it had Madame and Husband's name on it. I know, I'm a pain in the ass. But jeez,Madame (someone's wife) Nicole Husband's name, what was left of me? Just Nicole, and that's not enough.