Wednesday, November 11, 2009
In our lives, we all hear the same clichéd line at social gatherings whenever we introduce ourselves to someone new. "Please don't hate me if I don't remember your name the next time I see you, I'm terrible with names!"
What is that? That's not a good demonstration of social skill and sensitivity. Is that what you want to introduce yourself as, as Clifford, the guy who's bad with names, or as Christine, a bit of a bonehead with the inability to remember anything? Show a bit of interest in this interaction, mate.
And you know what they say the next time they see you?
"Hi, have I met you before? I'm so sorry, I'm so bad with names. Again, so sorry!"
Excuse me? That's your excuse? Maybe I shouldn't have even bothered with your name. How much more disrespectful and insulting can you be? Why can't you remember a simple name? Are you at all invested in this relationship?
What was that? You're more of a face person? What the Hell is that supposed to mean? You remember my face, but you haven't registered my name? Tell me, what the f**k is the use in memorizing a nameless face?
You say you usually remember people's faces, their voices, what they're wearing, and if they had something really nice on. That's the way to sound like a creepy klepto. Can't imagine what it must be like in the case you find someone sexually attractive. The focus is probably brought even further away from the person's name, and not just on the person's face anymore.
What about you? Why are you bad with names?
You say you get distracted by trying to make a good impression and you get nervous. Jesus, what did I ever do to make you feel you had to make a good impression and nervous? I've barely said anything. Do I look like a royal prince, searching the social scenes of the modern age for prestigious companions? ...No!
And what about you? You say you "instantly dive into analyzing people's personalities and forget to remember the names." I reckon you need professional help, my friend, because I feel violated in a Freudian kind of way. Since that emotion's so rare, that can't be good.
After a couple of months of having to endure this problem time and time again, with working in a place I've never worked in before, with coming to university meeting all these people for the first time, now, whenever I meet someone and they tell me their name, I make sure to instantly respond with, "My name's Mikey, don't worry. I'm very good with names, and I'll be sure to remember yours."
You should see the smiles on their faces.