On changing names - about as OT as you can get

Abe Gross argross at bigpond.net.au
Fri Mar 14 21:27:18 EST 2003

Sallyo wrote:

> My husband's nephew was disemployed by a telemarketer for calling a callee
> "Mate". Now, "Mate" is a friendly Australian name for someone whose name
> don't know, or whom you don't want to call "Denzil" or "Julian" because
> wearing a singlet and a tatt. The fem. equiv. is "Luv".

Hmm. "Mate" always feels nice to me when I hear it being used (though it
does have macho connotations when men use it in a certain way with each
other) but "Luv" feels sort of patronising. But I agree that using "mate" on
the phone to a stranger has a kind of friendly feel.

In shops (that is, when I'm somewhere where people can see me, rather than
on the phone) I sometimes get called "Pet", which is mabye a variation of
"Luv". I probably get called that because I'm short and petite. I hate it
because it feels patronising, especially as most of the time I am probably
older than the person using it!

> I felt like telling the boss that he ought to be encouraging young Matt,
> sacking him... but there you are. Maybe I'm wrong. After all, Australians
> also address you as "ya old bugger" or "ya old bastard" when they're
> friendly, too, and that would be going *too* far in telemarketing.
> Also, (though I don't like being telemarketed myself) spare a thought for
> the poor blokes and gals who have been unemployed for 5 years because
> just isn't any work for them... and have now landed a job where no one is
> pleased to hear from them!

My 21-year-old daughter has sometimes worked as a telemarketer as a casual
job while studying at uni, so I tend to be rather sympathetic of the plight
of telemarketers (as long as they're not rude to me)!


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