Thursday, October 18, 2007

One kiss or two?

Definitely two!

reports that we Brits are cringing because we no longer know how to greet each other.

Here are my preferred rules of engagement:

1. All meetings with clients

Handshake at start and finish of meeting. Use of title and surname.

2. Conclusion of matter with client

Handshake, kiss on each cheek and...... if it has been traumatic - hug! Use of forenames.

3. Friends

Kiss on each cheek - first name terms obviously!!!

4. Acquaintances

Handshake if man, kiss on each cheek if woman. Use of forenames unless they are of an older generation in which case respect demands that one uses their title and surname until they tell one otherwise.

5. All children under 10

Handshake, one kiss on cheek and ask them how they are and use their name in each sentence.

6. All children over 10

As friends

7. My family

Hugs and kiss on each cheek. Use of pet names

8. People whom I have never met whom I correspond with on a professional basis

Use of title and surname. It annoys me when mediators address me as Lynne when they would not recognise me in the street. Just because mediation is friendly does not mean that you are my friend. There are exceptions, fellow bloggers, people who comment on this blog, Law Society employees, the police, Neil Diamond, Al Gore, George Clooney - oops seem to have moved to my top ten men which is the subject of another post...

9. People whom I correspond with on a personal basis

As 8 above. I do not think my home insurance provider, based on another continent should address me by my first name. No doubt this is a sign that I am getting old.

10. Judges

District Judge - Sir/Madam
Circuit Judge - Your Honour

No physical contact

11. My boyfriend

Usually no contact on greeting. He hugs and kisses every other woman he knows which is how I know he likes me. He can, of course, say the same about me......


Judith said...

Loved this post but was surprised you'd omitted a guide for greeting one's ex. Might I suggest that to blow a kiss from across the other side of the street might be appropriate and in other cases a raspberry will do instead. The choice could perhaps be made depending on:
a) whether the separation was amicable
b) whether the financial settlement was under or over generous;
c) whether the new partner is spiffing or downright ugly.

Anonymous said...

Hi Judith,

Greeting one's ex is indeed a dilemma. I find that avoiding all physical and eye contact (helped by the wearing of large sunglasses a la Posh Spice) works well!!!! The use of the term "mummy" or "daddy" also avoids the ridiculously formal use of surnames and avoids one having to use their pet name!!