Say you have an Italian-American gent of the 1930's. He throws out some words now and then directed to a young lady who he finds at times both greatly annoying and amusing but there is no real romantic attraction involved in this relationship at the time. So the tone of these little pet names can be at times gently mocking, even contemptuous and exasperated but not necessarily hateful or mean-spirited. Think of how the hard-boiled noir detective might call the dame involved in his story something like " honey " or " sweetheart " or " darling " or " kid " and you'll get the tone I'm trying to go for.
some words I've mulled over for possibilities (and not sure of the translations/spelling please forgive my ignorance)
dolce mio-my sweet(?)
in addition to that, research seems to indicate that Italian pet names can be completely made up as well and I've also taken in consideration the fact that the region he hails from may have even more variations/independent terms to play with (he's Sardinian although this may change the more I work out his character)
so...in lieu of that information any other suggestions of names I could use? either in Italian or heck maybe even Sardinian for a little variety?
thanks in advance