Sunday, 19 January 2014

Hello mate

I understand that in the acting profession people call each other "darling" because they want to be friendly to people they meet - they may have worked with them or hope too - but can't always remember their names. This is particularly true for those who are famous and may not be sure if someone knows them or just knows who they are.

I'm not famous, but find it worse when someone knows my name and I cannot remember theirs. The window when I feel able to ask for a reminder, if it exists at all, is very narrow. It becomes difficult when engrossed in conversation with someone who knows my name to stop and say, "Tell me your name again". So I try to get the question in early and then remember the name. Using it repeatedly is a good way.

Then I include the persons face and name in the image for that day, as described previously. This sometimes includes a mental picture of everyone around a table at a dinner party or meeting and saying their name to myself as I try to recall their face. If I end up chatting with someone at the runs in the park I often attend, I'll ask their name and make a point of remembering it.

From this I've realised that while remembering the name of strangers you have met once can impress them, it can also be awkward for them and even unsettling. Why should a someone you may only vaguely remember talking to months ago remember your name? It helps if I reference back to the past meeting when I begin.

It is interesting how people respond when they do not remember my name. Few actually ask. Several times I've had people call me "mate" or "friend" - though not yet "darling".

So this is a new dilema to be resolved: how do I remind people of my name when they have clearly forgotten it - and possibly me - when I greet them by theirs?

Again its best to get in through the narrow window when first meeting again: "I'm Lembran. We met at the run at the beginning of October, I think it was."

Best to say "I think it was", I feel, than freak them out by giving the exact date, plucked from my mental calendar.

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