Ever thought you saw someone in a mall that you knew. You recognize a jacket, a certain swag and you think,
“Oh look! It’s ____________!”
And out of jovial exuberance and desired connection, you call out _____________’s name, only to have someone else that’s not your friend (along with the entire mall) turn around with a weird, “Who are YOU?!?!” face. embarrassment is nigh. You turn red, if your skin pigmentation allows for it, bury your face and walk away.
You’ve been there, right? Right? Of course.
Now…imagine doing that in front of the person. Yes, calling them by the wrong name in front of them. Especially if you KNOW them. Done that too? Well, please read this next story from the ever adventure that is my life.
Last week I drove up to my old college to do some visiting and attend a few seminars. Many of my old professors still teach there so it was great to see them and to give a report on where I’m at in my life. It was also good to see some newer students, grinding out papers, community and their own legacy. So I’m there and I see someone whom I’ve known for some time who’ s now a part-time prof at the school (this guy’s smart…really.) and we get to talking about the school and we’re both up to. Here’s how the conversation goes:
Chris: Hey Gerald*! Great seeing you here! You a teacher here this year?
Gerald: Yup, just part-time doing church history, really enjoying it.
ACT 2: SMALL TALK…then this:
C: Dude, you just got married a bit ago, eh? How’s that treating you?
G: Oh it’s great, man I really like-
C: So how is Gayle*
(At this point, Gerald’s face grimaces while still maintaining full eye-contact with me. His face says, “That’s not my wife’s name, Chris. You’ve mistaken me for another Gerald that you know who is married to Gayle. I’m married to Susan*. You know this, man…you should. Maybe you don’t. Maybe you…you know what, I’m just gonna go with it…”)
G: Oh she’s good. We’re really growing closer together (Or something like that. I stopped fully listening because at this point, I’ve realized his face and deducted that I’m an idiot and that he’s married to SUSAN and NOT GAYLE! I’ve also realized that he is NOT going to correct this major error. Now it’s awkward…)
C:…oh man, that’s awesome. So glad to hear that…
ACT 3: SMALL TALK ABOUT AGINCOURT, WHERE I WORK
G:…great, okay well good seeing you, Chris.
So there you have it. I fully called his WIFE by the wrong name in front of him. His WIFE. And he KNEW it. And I KNEW that HE KNEW. And we both…said…nothing.
In the land of mistaken identities and cover-ups, I suck
(For the first time ever, the names* in this post have been changed for privacy. However! Bonus points if you can figure out who I’m talking about…)