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Old September 28 2012, 04:29 PM   #61
KimMH
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

horatio83 wrote: View Post
I am a barbaric German but at least I am not a jingoist.
.

I know you were being funny but I found Germans to be very curteous and kind while there - about 18 mos in the late 1980s.

I do think we Americans tend to be a lot more casual about word usage and don't always think about the origins of words and phrases.

I am a fan of the idea that language is organic and rules; while useful, don't always sucessfully convey new ideas. New uses and vocab would seem like a sign of growth and therefore an indicator of good health, in spite of all the moaning and pissing about the decline of the tongue, blah blah blah . . .
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Old September 28 2012, 06:35 PM   #62
I am Surak
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

iguana_tonante wrote: View Post
Do you have anything to offer about this discussion but nonconsequential snide comments? Before you showed up insulting about 6,727,531,000 people without provocation, we were having an interesting discussion about the use and origin of the word "sir". But I guess standing on the sidelines throwing thrash is easier than actually having a discussion.
I had a long "snide" answer typed for this until I learned who you are and why you behave like that. Sorry.
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Old September 28 2012, 11:51 PM   #63
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

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Old September 29 2012, 12:05 AM   #64
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

iguana_tonante wrote: View Post
teya wrote: View Post
Good point. I'd also add that in the States, where the class system is more fluid (no hereditary titles), we don't even think about social rank when using "sir" or "ma'am."
Here in Italy we don't have hereditary titles as well (we discarded them when we became a republic), so I don't think about social ranks when using courtesy forms as signore/signora. (Well, some people still insist on being addressed by their ancient titles: usually they are laughed in their face by us commoners.)

When speaking English, on the other hand, the subtext is present in my mind. Funny that. Maybe because of the perception of (British) English as being the language of a country where nobility titles are still in use. I dunno.
Sure they might still be in use, but in everday usage they don't have much of an impact. So sure somebody might be properly addressed as Sir John Doe, just as they might be addressed as Dr. John Doe. But in everday usage the use of the word 'sir' has nothing to do with knighthoods and is about being polite.
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Old September 29 2012, 12:13 AM   #65
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

MacLeod wrote: View Post
iguana_tonante wrote: View Post
When speaking English, on the other hand, the subtext is present in my mind. Funny that. Maybe because of the perception of (British) English as being the language of a country where nobility titles are still in use. I dunno.
Sure they might still be in use, but in everday usage they don't have much of an impact. So sure somebody might be properly addressed as Sir John Doe, just as they might be addressed as Dr. John Doe. But in everday usage the use of the word 'sir' has nothing to do with knighthoods and is about being polite.
Again, I understand that. What I meant is that, as foreigner, my perception of the word "sir" might be coloured by the knowledge that such titles still exist in Britain, albeit rarely used. I hope this clears my intent.
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Old September 29 2012, 01:02 AM   #66
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

I am Surak wrote: View Post
I think one of the major reasons for this lengthy discussion is that people outside the United States have a very different way of dealing with their fellow man than us here.
The wonderful common courtesy that we enjoy in this country is simply non existent in Europe for instance. I know - I am from there and on my very first trip to America I was amazed how civilized Americans are to one another.
Could you give a some example of that "wonderful common courtesy" we so seem to be lacking here in the Old World?
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Old September 29 2012, 01:06 AM   #67
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

I read I am Surak's post and assumed he was talking about all the customer service sucking up you get in the US which takes a bit of choking down if you're not used to it.

Also beamMe is that Matt Smith in your avatar? It's very beautiful.
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Old September 29 2012, 01:20 AM   #68
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

teacake wrote: View Post
I read I am Surak's post and assumed he was talking about all the customer service sucking up you get in the US which takes a bit of choking down if you're not used to it.
Ah, that fake, superficial, saccharine "courtesy" you just want to barf back into their faces? We get that here, too, now. It's annoying as hell.

teacake wrote: View Post
Also beamMe is that Matt Smith in your avatar? It's very beautiful.
Yeah, it's Matt Smith.
It's not very visible in the avatar, but that's another guy he's kissing there.



Smith isn't handsome or beautiful, but I find him so attractive. There is something about his face that I don't quite get ... but I want to have it
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Old September 29 2012, 01:37 AM   #69
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

I assumed it was another guy, the whole picture is just gorgeous. Where is it from?

As to the fake courtesy sometimes an American chain will open up here in Aus (usually fails) and all the local employees will behave like this because management has forced them into it. It's absolutely bizarre.

We basically have no customer service here, which is also not a great thing
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Old September 29 2012, 01:38 AM   #70
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

beamMe wrote: View Post
Smith isn't handsome or beautiful, but I find him so attractive. There is something about his face that I don't quite get ... but I want to have it
It's like he's made of playdoh. I think he's adorable and he radiates a confident.. joy which is very sexy.
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Old September 30 2012, 01:52 AM   #71
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

teacake wrote: View Post
I read I am Surak's post and assumed he was talking about all the customer service sucking up you get in the US which takes a bit of choking down if you're not used to it.
We basically have no customer service here, which is also not a great thing
I think I'm picking up a pattern. You (perhaps as a group) deride actual customer service, then wonder why you don't receive it as a standard?

When I receive excellent customer service, I make a point of showing my appreciation by thanking the person by name (name tags are convenient), and yes occasionally call them "sir."

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Old September 30 2012, 02:02 AM   #72
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

I like customer service. I don't like fake huge smiles, fake peppy tones, fake expressions of care by strangers. I just want the waiter to show up promptly and not fuck up my order. I do NOT want to be asked "and HOW are YOU today!!" as though I'm watching the Micky Mouse club.
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Old September 30 2012, 09:41 AM   #73
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

teacake wrote: View Post
I like customer service. I don't like fake huge smiles, fake peppy tones, fake expressions of care by strangers. I just want the waiter to show up promptly and not fuck up my order. I do NOT want to be asked "and HOW are YOU today!!" as though I'm watching the Micky Mouse club.
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Old September 30 2012, 09:43 AM   #74
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

teacake wrote: View Post
I like customer service. I don't like fake huge smiles, fake peppy tones, fake expressions of care by strangers. I just want the waiter to show up promptly and not fuck up my order. I do NOT want to be asked "and HOW are YOU today!!" as though I'm watching the Micky Mouse club.
You think it's bad being on the receiving end of it? I used to work customer service and had to act like that all the damn time. Sure, I like to see customers have a good experience, but good grief.

And don't even get me started on that "the customer is always right" crap. But that's a completely different topic, apologies for contributing to the thread detour.
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Old September 30 2012, 10:05 AM   #75
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Re: officers are called 'sir'

teacake wrote: View Post
I like customer service. I don't like fake huge smiles, fake peppy tones, fake expressions of care by strangers. I just want the waiter to show up promptly and not fuck up my order. I do NOT want to be asked "and HOW are YOU today!!" as though I'm watching the Micky Mouse club.
Agreed, it should be upto the customer to initate conversation like "How are you today?"

No I do not want to be greeted as I enter your shop.
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