Thursday, August 23, 2007

Don't m'am me!

We have new across the street neighbors. Yay! I say yay because although the old neighbors were nice, they were very young and had no kids and pretty much kept to themselves. Our NEW neighbors are also young but they also have a four year old, much to Bubba's delight.

I think I've mentioned before that Bubba doesn't know a stranger, so of course the moment our new neighbor, whose name I've ALREADY forgotten (DANG!) stepped outside, Bubba was on her and her son (whose name I DO remember) like white on rice. Even though Bubba will talk a person's ear off if you let him, I'm really glad he's such a social creature. I can sometimes be a little bit of a misanthrope and sometimes, if I let myself, I can happily retreat into my shell.

So, Mr. Daddy and I were standing there chatting with Mrs. New Neighbor, asking a few get-to-know-you questions. She's a nurse and they just moved here from a neighboring county. I can't even remember now what I asked but she responded to one of my questions with "Yes m'am." Now granted, she's younger than I am, probably by a lot, but somehow when someone has children the same age as mine, to me it makes us contemporaries. So that m'am was like a bucket of cold water poured over me.

This is actually not the first time some young person has m'amed (m'am'd?) me. At a former job I had an intern who was like 20 at the time. When he first started it was "Yes m'am" this and "Yes m'am" that. Finally, one day I said "David, as a mother myself, I really appreciate the fact that your mother taught you good manners, but please don't say m'am to me." That, coupled with the fact that he (nor any of the other interns) had any idea who Depeche Mode was made me feel truly ancient.

I guess it all boils down to the fact that I still feel 21. Okay, not physically because right now I'm so tired I feel more like 81 in stead of 21, but I guess emotionally? But not really emotionally either because I've certainly matured since I was 21. Do you know what I mean, though? I guess it's that need to feel that I'm still "cool," still relevant. I've got pretty good taste in music. I keep abreast of pop culture and movies and such. But when someone calls me m'am it just invokes something that I'm not quite ready for. So don't m'am me -- unless you're Bubba or Punkin. Then it's required!

UPDATE: I was thinking about this last night and then I read Lauren's comment this morning so I decided to add this update. I don't want to undo years of hard work that mothers have put in, so I guess I don't really mind when people call me m'am. I'm a m'amer myself. I guess if you're a m'amer, go ahead and say it until they tell you not to. It was just a little shock to the system is all!


Lauren said...

Oh dear..Im a big ma'am-er! I'll have to watch that from now on!!!

Thanks for the comment on my new blog-made my day:)

Laurel said...

I remember moving into the ma'am stage. Oh, I hate that! It's like announcing, "You are officially old now." Problem is, there isn't a good alternative. Miss doesn't work. What else is there to address a woman with respect? Any ideas?

Lulu said...

My husband is also a huge ma'am-er and sir-er...even to people his own age! His sweet, southern belle mother certainly brought him up right!