The other day I was in bed around 2 p.m. and wondered what the collective noun for a group of Marikas might be. This alone should tell you a few things:
1) I’m amazing
2) I spend much of my day in fleece pants
3) I need more friends or hobbies or maybe a reason to live
My favorite animal collectives are:
a murder of crows
a shrewdness of apes
a crash of rhinos
an unkindness of ravens
an ostentation of peacocks
a glitter of hummingbirds
a covert of coots
a bloat of hippopotami
What I like about collective animal names is so many of them sound ridiculous but they all make sense. No offense, hippos, but the visual works: no one has ever described a hippopotamus as svelte. Peacocks — the colorful, many-eyed exotic land bird — are pretty extra as animals go, so calling them ‘an ostentation’ works, too. A murder of crows is out there, but if you’ve ever met a crow and looked him in the eye, you know it’s not out of the question.
In my quest to find the right collective noun for a group of me’s, I shot for the intersection of 80% Truthful and 110% Over The Top.
My best ideas so far:
a sarcasm of Marikas
a condescension of Marikas
a cellulite of Marikas
a sausagefest of Marikas
a Netflix of Marikas
an anxiety of Marikas
a Cool Ranch of Marikas
a beyhive of Marikas
I am all of these Marikas and more but to be honest — lately, I’ve been a Rhonda.
If there was a collective name for a group of Rhondas, it might be
a scourge of Rhondas
a nightmare of Rhondas
a herpes of Rhondas
a patriarchy of Rhondas
a cauldron of Rhondas
a Jar-Jar of Rhondas
a math class of Rhondas
a fuck no of Rhondas
Rhonda is a con artist, an emotional grifter; a savvy, professional victim. Rhonda has no loyalties and can’t follow through and lives in fear of invisible things. She’s a terrible friend, she sleeps too much, and she won’t remember your birthday. Rhonda hates everything that ever existed, everywhere things exist. Rhonda eats chips in bed and is the last person to turn off her phone in the movie theater. She’s obsessed with where all the hot girls from previous jobs ended up and, more importantly, if they’re doing better than her. Rhonda puts herself first in every situation, and never apologizes. Rhonda is basically the worst.
Much like my beloved peers Beyoncé, Mariah Carey, and Garth Brooks, I also have an on-stage alter ego who has joined their sainted ranks: Sasha Fierce! Bianca! Chris Gaines! And Rhonda. The newest, baddest imaginary bitch on the proverbial block.
I rang in 2018 amidst a legendary battle between a Cool Ranch of Marikas and a fuck no of Rhondas. The Rhondas won for a while, as they are sometimes wont to do, but the Marikas are winning right now. I suspect this battle will continue all year, and every year after to varying degrees. Rhonda is the perfect nemesis and teacher, made specifically to reveal things in me I don’t particularly want to know. Oh god, all the stuff I’ve reluctantly learned about myself this year, thanks to fucking Rhonda. But really? Thanks, Rhonda. Hey also: I hate you.
I think the best way forward for a beyhive of Marikas would be to follow the advice of Georgia O’Keefe: “I’ve been absolutely terrified every moment of my life – and I’ve never let it keep me from doing a single thing I wanted to do.” Rhonda is terrified all the time. But that quote makes me want to jump off buildings to see if I can fly. Maybe not actual human flight, but real bucket list stuff. Dream Big territory. I guess now I want to be terrified. I am not afraid to grow even if I’m super whiny about it.
They will always get in my way, that’s the whole point of a Jar-Jar of Rhondas. They will remind me every day that my bed is really soft or french fries are breakfast or that everyone in the history of the world is better at everything than me, because that’s their only job. And it’s the job of a Netflix of Marikas – or even just one bored, terrified Marika – to forge ahead anyway and slay that patriarchy of Rhondas. I think they’ve ruled long enough. Alternate ending: It’s my turn.