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That thing where you think you're being polite but really it's just a bit mad

(346 Posts)
Nabootique Mon 04-Apr-16 08:44:31

I am in the office just thinking about going to the canteen to get breakfast. I can't order what I want as the very nice young man who works the counter prides himself on getting my "usual" on the go as soon as he sees me approach the door. As a result, I have the same thing every day and don't have the heart to tell him I'd like to order something different.

I feel like this mad level of politeness is probably very common. Any funny stories?

MidnightVelvetthe5th Mon 04-Apr-16 08:50:46

Before I started work my friend & I used to go to Starbucks in town & we had our own made up names that we always used, they are fairly farfetched, think Araminta etc. I've started a new job & go in there every morning for a coffee, one of the first times a chap in there recognised me & said oh hello x its you & wrote my farfetched made up name on the cup, now they all think its my name & I have to give every new person who asks me my name, the made up one in case someone is behind the coffee machine who thinks the other one is really my name...its gone on far too long now for me to actually say my name is different!

Nabootique Mon 04-Apr-16 08:56:03


That's exactly the sort of thing I was looking for!

DisaL Mon 04-Apr-16 09:02:46

I work for a company who's head office is i abroad. About 3 years ago I was there with a customer and the owner of our company for some reason thought I was called a completely different name. I sat for hours in the meeting and let him call me the wrong name because I hadn't corrected him early enough (he's quite a scary man and it would have felt really impolite to tell him he was wrong).

That was bad enough but then later that year he came to the UK for a function. He was going round each table introducing himself. When he got to our table he recognised me and then I had to stand there for 15 minutes and introduce him to all my colleagues on my table while he called me the wrong name. They were all completely bewildered about what was going on and they've never let me forget it!

pepperrabbit Mon 04-Apr-16 09:02:54

I used to pop into a café to get a hot choc on my way to work many many years ago, it was very early in the morning and I was usually the only customer. They gave me a free donut one day, it was lovely, then again the next day, and again...
As a treat a donut was lovely, but every morning! I was too polite to decline it and as they could see me all the way to the shop as I opened up, I had to eat it.
I was the size of a house with zits in no time!!
I left the country in the end.

Roussette Mon 04-Apr-16 09:12:43

My DDad got it in his head that my DH liked to drink Chartreuse. God knows where he got that from (I bet no one has even heard of it) so he gave him a bottle for Christmas every year. We didn't have the heart to tell him grin

SausageSmuggler Mon 04-Apr-16 09:13:28

Pepperrabbit the fact you left the country surely means you win the thread!

I have a lot of problems with people pronouncing my surname - it rhymes with a purple chocolate brand that's gone down in popularity. I have also worked in schools for years so my politeness goes off the chart with parents who pronounce my name wrong. This is despite me always introducing myself at the start of the year. Ah well.

ClashCityRocker Mon 04-Apr-16 09:21:40

I have a loyalty card for our local coffee shop. The name on it is not my name - he misheard me when writing it down.

He's been calling me it for the last seven years.

Fugghetaboutit Mon 04-Apr-16 09:23:12

Op, that's the most British thing ever! Just say actually I think I'll try something different today, he won't give a crap I promise!

Fugghetaboutit Mon 04-Apr-16 09:24:53

Where is this free doughnut place?!

ILostItInTheEarlyNineties Mon 04-Apr-16 09:29:10

You left the country Pepperrabbit ? grin

OP, maybe next time you see him, mention that you would like to try X tomorrow, instead of your usual?

My elderly neighbour has called me Jodie (not my name) for eight years now. It's gone on too long for me to correct her so I pretend that's my name to save embarrassment. blush

ILostItInTheEarlyNineties Mon 04-Apr-16 09:31:35

On the rare occasion I go to the hairdressers, I always tell them I love what they've done and then go home and cry because I hate it and it's not what I wanted.

greenbloom Mon 04-Apr-16 09:31:55

We have a great aunt who calls my dd by a name that sound similar to her real name, but isn't. Dd is 11.

StealthPolarBear Mon 04-Apr-16 09:32:43

Love this thread smile

Nabootique Mon 04-Apr-16 09:32:57

Fugghetaboutit It's also because he's already got the toast in the toaster, and what I want to order might not involve toast, and then I'd feel bad because there will be wasted toast. But yes, I am a loon. I accept that grin

He wasn't there this morning! He was in the kitchen, so ordered something different with other person smile

Nabootique Mon 04-Apr-16 09:34:14

Oh God, yes ILostItInTheEarlyNineties. Me too. I thought everyone did that. I go home and "edit" my haircut myself, in fact.

Fugghetaboutit Mon 04-Apr-16 09:38:54

It's only toast! He would probably eat it himself, I used to do that in my cafe with cancelled stuff smile

Enkopkaffetak Mon 04-Apr-16 09:42:07

Not 100% sure if this counts but I am going to add it anyway.

I am bad at hearing in one ear so often have to ask people to repeat themselves if they are standing on my left side. Many a time when I do this adding the explanation that " I am bad at hearing in that ear" people " as a joke" will whisper What they were saying.
Each time I stand there smiling politely as if they had done a nice funny joke when actually I want to punch their lights out. (especially with 1 colleague in particular)

ILostItInTheEarlyNineties Mon 04-Apr-16 09:49:44

Instead of telling people I can't hear them in a pub with loud music, I usually just nod and laugh at their inaudible comments.
I once really offended my friend in a noisy club by smiling and laughing when she told me she thought her partner was having an affair.

MoodyWarps Mon 04-Apr-16 09:49:46

My husband's grandmother has been calling me the wrong name for the 10 years she has known me, she was corrected a couple of times but now it's just accepted that she calls me that name (it's a name I dislike)

Bogburglar99 Mon 04-Apr-16 09:52:41

There is a delightful family at school. Kids get on, we always stop for a chat, say hello at mutual birthday parties, are customers to the family business. This has been going on for the past three years.

I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT HER NAME IS. And neither of them ever seem to refer to the other by name so I can't hope for a casual reference to 'John' or 'Sally'.

Three years is too long to confess you don't know somebody's name isn't it?

1frenchfoodie Mon 04-Apr-16 09:57:42

roussette chartreuse! Poor, poor DH. Not exactly the sort of thing you can cook with either is it.

I have a terrible memory for names (and somtimes faces). In my line of work I move jobs within the same organisation every 2 years or so. One woman I can only assume is an old colleague bumps into me regularly and asks detailed questions about my family, partner, house etc. She seems to know me well but I have no idea of her name or where she even knows me from.

SallyGardens Mon 04-Apr-16 10:03:06

Ilostit We had an elderly neighbour who called me June from the time I was 4 (when we moved into that house) until she died about 30 years later. It was easier to just go along with it.

Hygge Mon 04-Apr-16 10:06:27

Two customers at work once had a small disagreement over my name.

One thinks it's Lauren, the other thinks it's Josie.

My name is not Lauren or Josie. I took to wearing one of those necklaces with my name on it when they were popular and now someone else has misread it and thinks I'm called Lucy. I'm not.

Another man started bringing a colleague a sausage roll in every week. She is a vegetarian and nobody is sure how the misunderstanding started, but when she left and moved to Ireland he started bringing me a pork pie.

Salmotrutta Mon 04-Apr-16 10:07:00

There's a colleague of mine at school (different department) who keeps calling me the wrong name and I'm also too polite to correct her!

This is more general as I can't immediately think of a specific story but when people recount anecdotes of events that I was present at, then embellish the truth I never say "Hang on, that's not the way it was" - too polite. It means that I've listened to some right old exaggerations in my time...

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