What do you call the one you love?
Do you offer a generic "darling" or "honey"?
Do you go for something of a more personal nature that, if overheard, no one would understand unless you explained it? Examples I have heard include: "Bizca (look it up)," "Barry" (to a girl), and "Nancy" (to a man).
One would have thought, though, that the British royal family wouldn't resort to anything that might ultimately be ridiculed.
When it comes to Prince William and his wife Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, I would have imagined utter decorum. For example, she to him: "Kinglet." He to her: "Bridgey."
However, the trial of News of the World executives accused of knowing about phone hacking has brought up a true royal revelation.
As the Mirror reported on Thursday, one of the hacked voice mails unveiled that Prince William calls his wife "babykins."
Personally, I am moved beyond words that the prince would use such a sweet, endearing and, frankly, unroyal way to refer to his Queen (To) Bee.
William seems to be a thoroughly decent human being. Indeed, he likes football (soccer, to some), which you wouldn't have got any member of the royal family to heartily embrace in previous years.
There have been so many gruesome revelations about how the newspaper's journalists and operatives hacked the phones of seemingly everyone in the news. So this one charming tidbit is a blessed relief.
Of course, those who read the News of the World (guilty m'lud) reveled in the intimate inside information that the newspaper provided. Somehow, the massive readership never conceived that subterfuge might have been involved.
It makes ones only wonder that, should Google one day be taken over by those with the revelatory spirit shown by some at News Corporation, even more glorious tales of intimacy will come to light.
For now, we must content ourselves with knowing that a prince calls his princess "babykins."
I am determined to try this slightly outmoded term of endearment at the very next opportunity.