Author Topic: Is This Kind of Lie Okay? Update - ish #15  (Read 4692 times)

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violinp

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Is This Kind of Lie Okay? Update - ish #15
« on: December 09, 2012, 10:42:00 PM »
I participated in a concert of the Christmas portion of Handel's Messiah. It was well - sung, well - played, and a wonderful time was had by all.

We had two performances, and the host church fed us in between the concerts. When we were in line for the food, I heard a voice I'd hoped never to hear again: "Hey! Didn't I sub for one of your classes?"

The voice was the voice of a man who was, at best incompetent at teaching, and in my honest opinion, incompetent at managing basic decency to his fellow human beings - when a national tragedy occurred, he made an awful joke about it, and was surprised when no one laughed. He was finally fired after he called the kids he was teaching "absolute retards," (I apologize, but that's what he actually said) and that only because a kid got it on tape.  >:(

My first instinct was to bring up all of the things he did, but I managed to shove Evil!Violin back in her cage, and I said, "I'm sorry; my memory's foggy. I really don't remember you."

It was the only thing I could think of on the fly that wasn't completely snarky and rude. I couldn't refuse to answer him, as that would have looked stranger than my responding, but obviously, "Oh, yes! You're the teacher who was fired for calling kids intellectually disabled!" would have gone over like a lead balloon and sent me straight to Ehell for quite some time. And, really, what would I have said politely after that if I had affirmed that he had been my substitute teacher? I can't think of anything that would be, knowing my personal history with the man.

My question is: Is it rude to pretend not to know someone when you really do to avoid a very awkward situation?
« Last Edit: December 10, 2012, 12:34:45 PM by violinp »
"It takes a great deal of courage to stand up to your enemies, but even more to stand up to your friends" - Harry Potter


NyaChan

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2012, 10:44:09 PM »
I think that was an excellent way of handling things, and is definitely one of those times when a small lie is acceptable.  No good would have come from admitting that you recognized him.

sweetonsno

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2012, 10:47:44 PM »
I think that was an appropriate way to handle the situation. I give you a pass. There was nothing malicious in your lie.

StoutGirl

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2012, 11:54:45 PM »
I think that you handled the situation just fine, I would have done the same thing.  Glad to hear that Messiah went well for you, I absolutely love Handel!

Raintree

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2012, 01:32:53 AM »
I think you did just fine. The only danger would have been if he'd tried to continue, ie "No, really, I subbed for you! Back in 2006. It was the year you were off on mat leave" (or whatever you were doing). In the latter case I think the cut direct may have worked just fine.

JennJenn68

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2012, 06:49:37 AM »
Actually, I think that this type of "polite lie" is almost straight out of "classic" etiquette.  It falls under the same umbrella as the "not at home" fiction.  I would like to think that I would have done the same thing, too, if my mind had worked swiftly enough.  (My brain excels at what I've once heard described as "staircase wit".  I always think of the perfect response to something awkward, rude, insulting or dismissive said to me--but not until I'm on the staircase going down away from the situation.  It drives me up the spout!)

cicero

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2012, 06:57:19 AM »

My question is: Is it rude to pretend not to know someone when you really do to avoid a very awkward situation?
it is the opposite of rude - you acted gracefully and did everything to avoid a bad situation.


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scotcat60

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2012, 08:02:12 AM »
I always think of the perfect response to something awkward, rude, insulting or dismissive said to me--but not until I'm on the staircase going down away from the situation.  It drives me up the spout!)

Me too!

I think the OP is to be congratulated on thinking on their feet so quickly. I wouldn't be able to. A problem might arise though if the person pushed the point, insisting "But surely you must remember me?"

bopper

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2012, 11:23:32 AM »
"Ah Yes, I could never forget you. What are you doing these days??" (hope it is nothing to do with children and so I can avoid you!!)

Sharnita

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2012, 11:34:42 AM »
I like bopper's response.  Along the same lines "Of course I remeber you - it has been a while, what are you up to?"

Yvaine

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2012, 11:39:09 AM »
I like bopper's response.  Along the same lines "Of course I remeber you - it has been a while, what are you up to?"

I don't think she wanted to engage with him. A question would engage.

Outdoor Girl

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #11 on: December 10, 2012, 11:46:38 AM »
I think your first response was perfect.  But if the bacon fed knave had tried to continue the conversation ('You don't remember me?'), then I don't see anything wrong with what you wrote.  Add an 'Excuse me' at the end and walk away.

"Oh, yes! You're the teacher who was fired for calling kids intellectually disabled!"
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bah12

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2012, 11:57:28 AM »
I think in this case, it was fine.  I probably would have gone with something along the lines of Bobber..."Yes! It's good to see you.  Enjoy the show!"  Did you have someone standing in line near you that you could have talked to so that you wouldn't have to talk to this guy?  If not, the lie was your best bet.

LeveeWoman

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2012, 11:59:57 AM »
I think your polite fiction was acceptable. Who wants to engage the crazy?

rose red

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Re: Is This Kind of Lie Okay?
« Reply #14 on: December 10, 2012, 12:06:32 PM »
You're fine.  The lie is not going to hurt anyone and you may never see him again.  Not all lies are bad.