Etiquette Hell

Etiquette School is in session! => "What an interesting assumption." => Topic started by: lucy_in_the_sky on February 27, 2009, 01:19:35 PM

Title: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: lucy_in_the_sky on February 27, 2009, 01:19:35 PM
Right... this was the oddest one I've gotten in a while, which includes the Goth incident from another topic.

I was having a wander in Salem today, just poking around and doing some shopping. Today I chose a black shirt, indigo jeans, and a black ruffly sweater. (It's not freezing in MA anymore! YAY!) Today's jewelry is a silver ring, two silver bracelets, and a sizable moonstone pendant on a short black cord. When I say sizable I mean it's about two inches long, with a teardrop and an oval rainbow moonstone. My hair was tied back. A mother and daughter are walking in the other direction, so coming towards me, on the sidewalk. The girl, who was about 10-12 (and should have known better) points at me and says in a very loud voice "Hey, it's a Salem Witch!" then smirk.

The mother glares at me (what did I do?!) and then proceeds to cross the street while gripping the girl's hand and peering at me over her shoulder, as though she wanted me to know I was the reason for their change of trajectory.

I was so startled that I stopped dead and watched them walk off. I must confess that a part of me wanted to shout "I'll get you my pretty, and your little dog, too!"

I think it was the look I was sporting today. I don't know what it is about my fashion choices... I mean the only thing I could think of that seemed even a little new-agey was the necklace, but where is it written that only witches can wear big shiny moonstones? In what reality is it okay to treat people like that, even if I were a witch?

Is there a way I could have handled this better? I mean, should I have said something? My first instinct is always to say something immediately, mainly because I think rude people should be called on their rudeness, but in this situation I don't think there's anything I could have done, even if I hopped on my broomstick and chased after them.

This is getting just a little ranty, so I'll stop.  :-X
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: lady_disdain on February 27, 2009, 02:34:57 PM
Don't worry about it - they made fools of themselves in public.

Calling them out in public would not only be rude of you (thereby lowering you to their level somewhat) but also useless: such preconceived notions aren't changed because a freak called them out on it. By the way, I think that she was looking over her shoulder to make sure you weern't following her for nefarious reasons *shrug*
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Team HoundMom on February 27, 2009, 02:38:22 PM
In Salem, Mass.?  I'd be disappointed if I *didn't* see a witch.  :D
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: lucy_in_the_sky on February 28, 2009, 09:47:14 AM
lady_disdain, Thank you. I figured that I couldn't have done anything better, but it for some reason it really upset me yesterday. I've never had something like that happen to me before (where someone ran away from me)

juicy_fruit_kisses, I know! If that was their reaction to me, I'd like to see them take on "Well-known Witch of Salem"*. 





***Didn't know if it was appropriate to use her name, so I wont.  :P
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: KitFox on March 03, 2009, 03:44:39 PM
Happens to me all the time. And sometimes it happens the opposite way. I'm not pagan, but I'm goth. I've had many goth pagans get really mad at me for "stealing" their "identity." Whaa-? I didn't know it was a uniform. I kinda thought it wasn't and that was the POINT of goth to begin with. It makes my head want to go *BOOM*!
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: yupitsme on March 04, 2009, 12:20:39 PM
Because it was a child, I would brush it off. The mother should have said something though. A sorry would have been nice.

I'm from MA (it's freezing again!) and go to Salem very often. I see people dressed like that there all the time. I don't think everyone there is a witch! I honestly think it was just because you were in Salem. I think if you were in Downtown Boston dressed like that no one would say anything. Plus I think the little girl was "looking for" a witch.

Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Sleepingmediocre on March 04, 2009, 12:26:46 PM
Happens to me all the time. And sometimes it happens the opposite way. I'm not pagan, but I'm goth. I've had many goth pagans get really mad at me for "stealing" their "identity." Whaa-? I didn't know it was a uniform. I kinda thought it wasn't and that was the POINT of goth to begin with. It makes my head want to go *BOOM*!

Reminds me of the goth kids from "South Park."   ;)

lucy_in_the_sky, I wouldn't let two rude people ruin your day.  Wear your moonstones with your head held high. 
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: lucy_in_the_sky on March 05, 2009, 08:36:29 PM
Oh I didn't.  ;)  One thing that bugs me, though, is that the kid was like 10-13ish, so I really wanted to say something. Like "Oh look, a rude girl!"

I know that's not Etiquette approved, but it bugged me more that her rude behavior was reinforced by the mother than anything else. Its like that rude kid from another topic who kept saying that OP's fiance was fat. Kids should be taught from a much younger age than 10 about etiquette and what's considered rude. Even if the mother didn't approve of my lifestyle, which she has no proof I actually subscribe to, their actions were still rude, and it still ticked me off.

Oh well. It was ages ago.  ;D
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: sbtier on March 05, 2009, 09:21:47 PM
Tourists!   ::)  I would have thought it was a local disapproving of what she saw as 'touristy witchiness' with the dirty look but the fact that she crossed the street makes me think she WAS a tourist.

I'm also from MA and agree with the previous poster that it's just BECAUSE you were in Salem that you got that reaction.  Did you go to Ye Olde Pepper?   ;D
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Beyond The Veil on March 05, 2009, 09:52:30 PM
When people ask me if I am goth or make comments about it, I say, "I'm a barbarian?! Get back ye Roman!" or something silly like that. However, that is a reflection of own hate of the term, and that will garner you even crazier stares, so it's best to ignore it and sway your hips as if you are zee tragique exigée absolument noire!
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Nannerdoman on March 18, 2009, 01:17:41 PM
I don't suppose it's possible that the mother was dragging her daughter off to ream her out in private about her rudeness?
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Bibliophile on March 18, 2009, 01:22:23 PM
Did you forget to mention the ruby slippers and green face paint?  That's just plain odd - and rude.  Sad that the daughter is learning rudeness from the mom...
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: lucy_in_the_sky on March 19, 2009, 11:02:16 PM
Did you forget to mention the ruby slippers and green face paint?  That's just plain odd - and rude.  Sad that the daughter is learning rudeness from the mom...

Next time this happens to me (it happens a lot...) I'm going to cackle. Seriously, next time I've got my cape and conical hat, then make the judgment.
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: LovesWater on March 19, 2009, 11:27:11 PM
...  If that was their reaction to me, I'd like to see them take on "Well-known Witch of Salem"*. 

Now I'm curious. I assume you don't mean S_______ M______, but someone from the current century?
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: LeeLee88 on March 22, 2009, 05:58:43 PM
Haha! Lucy, my mother and I have both had that happen to us, just because we enjoy wearing wraps and quite a lot of tribal jewelry.  Most folks look at my mom and go "crazy hippie", while others look at me (tall, dark, kind-of-angry-look-on-my-face-because-I'm-not-paying-attention-to-how-I-look-at-the-moment) and think, "Gasp! Witch!".  While sometimes I am very tempted to blurt out, "Yes, I am, and little children smell like dog-droppings", I usually just smile kindly and laugh a little.  You are right though, many parents seem to get this look on their faces as though they're afraid that I might "get" their kids or something. 

I just remembered when I was picking up my nephews from day-care, and while I was talking to the day-care worker and getting the boys' coats on, a handful of kids came up to me and asked if I was a witch :).  I said no, I wasn't, but I know several, and they are all very nice people.  The kids went off after checking out my bracelets and that was that. 

That woman may have been taking her daughter off for a lecture, but I don't think she would've have been watching you over her shoulder or would have given you the stink-eye had that been her intent.  People can be obnoxious and pretty much dumb sometimes; you handled this gracefully, and as a previous poster said, it wouldn't really have done anything for you to call out the mother and daughter on their behavior as they surely would've just felt further justified for acting that way towards you.  Sorry it happened, but don't let it de-rail the fabulous train!!
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: joraemi on March 23, 2009, 07:24:31 AM
I think I would have smiled and yelled, "Bye!  Have a great day!" - and meant it.  I think kids need to experience first hand that appearances aren't always what they seem.  (apparently adults do too.....)  Even if you were a witch, isn't Witch rule #1 something like, "Do No Harm"?  So what's the big deal?

  I don't get people.

  I bet your moonstone is pretty!  I've seen a few pendants with moonstones that I wouldn't mind having - Gee - there isn't some unspoken rule about only witches wearing moonstones, is there?
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Beyond The Veil on March 23, 2009, 01:04:47 PM
There aren't really any witch rules because they aren't all Gardnerian, but your suggestion of "have a great day" is something I need to exercise myself more often. I am usually quiet and have snark on the tip of my tongue, have to work those filters!  ;)
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: FunkyMunky on March 24, 2009, 06:53:47 PM
When people ask me if I am goth or make comments about it, I say, "I'm a barbarian?! Get back ye Roman!" or something silly like that.

By the original definition, most of the population are babrbarians. (It means 'someone who can't speak [Ancient] Greek'.)  ;D
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Calypso on March 26, 2009, 07:23:47 PM
Unless Salem has changed a great deal since I was there (and it has been 8 years, so maybe) I don't know how the woman survived the day---you couldn't go 10 feet in the downtown area without encountering something witchy.

Off topic---I understand the Witch Education Center (I know that's not what it was actually called) is no longer there? It was over near the Memorial site for the people falsely accused of witchcraft in the 1690s, which I found an incredibly moving memorial.
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: pootbear on May 20, 2009, 05:23:02 PM
. The girl, who was about 10-12 (and should have known better) points at me and says in a very loud voice "Hey, it's a Salem Witch!" then smirk.

The mother glares at me (what did I do?!) and then proceeds to cross the street while gripping the girl's hand and peering at me over her shoulder, as though she wanted me to know I was the reason for their change of trajectory.

I was so startled that I stopped dead and watched them walk off. I must confess that a part of me wanted to shout "I'll get you my pretty, and your little dog, too!"

The child I'd cut some mental slack on as she may have thought you in your outfit (which sounds nice)  was part of the Salem 'thing' but the mother... I just don't understand people like that. Had I been there and had you quoted the WWW's line from W-OZ, I'd would have been tickled and delighted enough to buy you the brew of your chosing! PB
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: TychaBrahe on May 31, 2009, 10:33:55 PM
How incredibly ignorant.  No self-respecting witch would wear black between Walpurgisnacht and Samhain.
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: lucy_in_the_sky on June 01, 2009, 11:39:45 AM
How incredibly ignorant.  No self-respecting witch would wear black between Walpurgisnacht and Samhain.

I have NEVER heard that! Could you PM me with more information?
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Kimblee on June 06, 2009, 02:19:28 PM
Happens to me all the time. And sometimes it happens the opposite way. I'm not pagan, but I'm goth. I've had many goth pagans get really mad at me for "stealing" their "identity." Whaa-? I didn't know it was a uniform. I kinda thought it wasn't and that was the POINT of goth to begin with. It makes my head want to go *BOOM*!

Reminds me of the goth kids from "South Park."   ;)

lucy_in_the_sky, I wouldn't let two rude people ruin your day.  Wear your moonstones with your head held high. 

The only wiccan I know favors witty T-shirts, jeans and comfey shoes to work out in her garden in. She looks like every other soccer mom in her area.

She gave me a moonstone ring for my birthday one year.
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: wednesdaygirl on July 07, 2009, 11:04:52 AM
I shook my head when I read this.  My own MOTHER made some comment like that when she and my sister spent the day in Salem after dropping me off at law school in Boston.  UNREAL.
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: CG on July 07, 2009, 05:10:42 PM
When people ask me if I am goth or make comments about it, I say, "I'm a barbarian?! Get back ye Roman!" or something silly like that.

By the original definition, most of the population are babrbarians. (It means 'someone who can't speak [Ancient] Greek'.)  ;D

And a good number of us are "pagan," in the original sense of the word - one who lives outside of the cities. (The people in rural areas were the last ones to pick up Christianity, and they were called pagans - L. paganus a countryman, peasant, villager, a pagan, fr. paganus of or pertaining to the country, rustic, also, pagan, fr. pagus a district, canton, the country, perh. orig., a district with fixed boundaries)
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: majorboredom on July 07, 2009, 05:13:14 PM
I'd probably have started screaming, "A witch!  Burn her, BURN HER!!!"

Just kidding.  No, it's not right.  Sad that there's nothing you could really say or do to make her mother realize her marginilizing isn't keeping her kid safe from the real 'evils' of the world.
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: secretrebel on July 09, 2009, 04:32:44 AM
I was once in the supermarket and heard a little girl squeaking "Mummy, mummy, that lady's a witch! Mummy, Mummy, look a witch!"

I turned to look, wanting to see the witch and saw that the little girl was pointing at me. At which point her mortified mother hushed her and scooped her up but the kid was still pointing, obviously thinking her mother hadn't spotted the witch. I just grinned at mum and kid and went on with my shopping.

But in my case the mother was embarassed and the kid very young. I think what happened to the OP was much ruder. I wish she had said the line from Wizard of Oz. I think that would have been a humorous response to rudeness.
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: SkyTalon on July 09, 2009, 08:52:05 PM
Would it be bad of me if I had replied to my child saying that with, "Now now, she's only a witch if she weighs the same as a duck. And I'm not stupid enough to ask a woman her weight."  ;D
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: C0mputerGeek on July 10, 2009, 05:07:55 PM
You guys have taught me some new things today. I had no idea that barbarian originally referred to someone who did not speak [Ancient] Greek, and that pagans were people who lived outside the city. I have never been a pagan (Pagan?) but I am definitely a barbarian.

Okay....who is the "Well-known Witch of Salem."
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Nannerdoman on July 10, 2009, 06:42:59 PM
Okay....who is the "Well-known Witch of Salem."

Which witch?  (I had to say it).

There were, I believe, 19 or 20 people who were executed for witchcraft in the Salem frenzy of 1692.  Most were hanged; one was pressed to death by having increasingly heavy weights piled on his chest (a practice designed to force a confession, which this stubborn man--Giles Corey--refused to give).  I'm not sure that any is better known than any other, unless perhaps it's Rebecca Nurse.  She was an old woman of such remarkable piety that the panic increased exponentially when she was accused, because if Goodwife Nurse could be a witch--well, then anyone could!

The persons who confessed to witchcraft were spared.  Those who maintained their innocence were hanged.  It wasn't a matter of "innocent until proven guilty", but of "innocent until proven accused".

Yes, I've read a lot about the matter.

Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Shea on July 11, 2009, 11:42:59 AM
Would it be bad of me if I had replied to my child saying that with, "Now now, she's only a witch if she weighs the same as a duck. And I'm not stupid enough to ask a woman her weight."  ;D

No, that would make you Parent of the Year >:D.
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: CG on July 11, 2009, 03:17:21 PM
There were, I believe, 19 or 20 people who were executed for witchcraft in the Salem frenzy of 1692.  Most were hanged; one was pressed to death by having increasingly heavy weights piled on his chest (a practice designed to force a confession, which this stubborn man--Giles Corey--refused to give).

If anyone is wondering, Giles Corey did not just refuse to give a confession; he refused to stand trial. The reason being, if he pled innocent or guilty, his land could be considered forfeit. There was more of a chance of his SILs still being able to inherit if he did not stand trial. He was pressed to death with stones as punishment for refusing. Nanner can probably explain it better than I can, but I have to admire that ornery old guy (he was 80 or so).

However, I think they're talking 'bout someone who is still alive...
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Nannerdoman on July 11, 2009, 07:10:30 PM
There were, I believe, 19 or 20 people who were executed for witchcraft in the Salem frenzy of 1692.  Most were hanged; one was pressed to death by having increasingly heavy weights piled on his chest (a practice designed to force a confession, which this stubborn man--Giles Corey--refused to give).

If anyone is wondering, Giles Corey did not just refuse to give a confession; he refused to stand trial. The reason being, if he pled innocent or guilty, his land could be considered forfeit. There was more of a chance of his SILs still being able to inherit if he did not stand trial. He was pressed to death with stones as punishment for refusing. Nanner can probably explain it better than I can, but I have to admire that ornery old guy (he was 80 or so).

However, I think they're talking 'bout someone who is still alive...

Oh.  I don't do live people, so I have no idea to whom they're referring, then.

Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: vampchick21 on July 22, 2009, 06:10:39 PM
There were, I believe, 19 or 20 people who were executed for witchcraft in the Salem frenzy of 1692.  Most were hanged; one was pressed to death by having increasingly heavy weights piled on his chest (a practice designed to force a confession, which this stubborn man--Giles Corey--refused to give).

If anyone is wondering, Giles Corey did not just refuse to give a confession; he refused to stand trial. The reason being, if he pled innocent or guilty, his land could be considered forfeit. There was more of a chance of his SILs still being able to inherit if he did not stand trial. He was pressed to death with stones as punishment for refusing. Nanner can probably explain it better than I can, but I have to admire that ornery old guy (he was 80 or so).

However, I think they're talking 'bout someone who is still alive...

Oh.  I don't do live people, so I have no idea to whom they're referring, then.



Laurie Cabot, the Officaial Witch of Salem.  She's been around for several decades and received that title from the former Gov. of Mass.  She is a High Priestess and has done a great deal of work educating the public about modern Witches and Wiccans.  She runs a Wiccan shop in Salem and is also an author.

And it sounds like the mother in the original story could use a bit of a lecture at Ms. Cabot's feet!  As well as a lecture from Miss. Manners.
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Team HoundMom on July 22, 2009, 08:42:45 PM
Laurie Cabot, the Officaial Witch of Salem. 

Thank you - I remember seeing a documentary but I couldn't remember her name.  :)
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: vampchick21 on July 22, 2009, 09:18:52 PM
No prob!  I could remember her first name, but not her last one, so I had to look it up.....lol
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: LovesWater on July 31, 2009, 07:20:27 PM
Okay....who is the "Well-known Witch of Salem."

Which witch?  (I had to say it).

There were, I believe, 19 or 20 people who were executed for witchcraft in the Salem frenzy of 1692.  Most were hanged; one was pressed to death by having increasingly heavy weights piled on his chest (a practice designed to force a confession, which this stubborn man--Giles Corey--refused to give).  I'm not sure that any is better known than any other, unless perhaps it's Rebecca Nurse.  She was an old woman of such remarkable piety that the panic increased exponentially when she was accused, because if Goodwife Nurse could be a witch--well, then anyone could!

The persons who confessed to witchcraft were spared.  Those who maintained their innocence were hanged.  It wasn't a matter of "innocent until proven guilty", but of "innocent until proven accused".

Yes, I've read a lot about the matter.



I thought the most famous was Susannah Martin - but, as it turns out, the OP was indeed referring to someone alive! Thank you to vampchick21 for answering the question - I was very curious!
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: BettyDraper on July 31, 2009, 07:31:05 PM
OP, I think your ensemble sounds chic and lovely; the mother and child were crackpots.  Don't let them get you down.

And your Wizard of Oz quotation made me laugh out loud!   :)

OT but = About 15 years ago I visited Salem and was purchasing some charms in a witchcraft-oriented gift shoppe -- the young man at the register was rather snippy and I retorted in kind.  Ten minutes later approaching my rental car I stumbled over something, made a few flying leaps across the parking lot and landed face down, skinning my left knee rather badly.  Coincidence?  I think not.    ;)
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: Sirius on August 15, 2009, 12:57:55 PM
Hey, I have a moonstone necklace...and I'm a 50-yo redhead who's majestic-sized.  I also have a moonstone ring, and I love them both because they're beautiful.  The ring has veins of cobalt blue in the right lighting, and the necklace, which I wear on a long silver chain, makes a ringing sound when I tap on it.  If I saw someone wearing a moonstone as the OP described, I'd be oohing and aahing over it.  It sounds beautiful.
Title: Re: Yet another assumption based on my appearance...
Post by: claddagh lass on September 29, 2009, 08:07:30 PM
I have a moonstone ring.  I am quite fond of the moonstone.

One time for Halloween I went outside wearing a black dress with my hair pinned up.  I have naturally pale skin and walked by a woman with her daughter.

The little girl exclaimed, "Mommy!  Mommy!  There's a new witch here!"

The mother shook her head and it took all that I had to keep from laughing.