On 2017-11-22 09:20:01 +0000, Richard Heathfield said:
> On 22/11/17 08:30, Lazar Beshkenadze wrote:
>> среда, 22 ноября 2017 г., 11:17:25 UTC+3 пользователь Athel
>> Cornish-Bowden написал:
>>> On 2017-11-22 08:04:04 +0000, Richard Heathfield said:
>>>> "Ma'am" and "sir" will do nicely.
>>> While we're at it, he shouldn't abbreviate "because" to "'cause".
>> What's wrong with that?
> Nothing's wrong with it, exactly - but "'cos" is more common in the UK.
>> Is it British or it pertains to the US too?
> I can't comment on that.
>> And what do you say about Mr. Heathfield's acceptance
>> of the forms of address in question? Excuse me, but
>> this is what worries me most. :)
> There's no need to worry, at least not in the UK. If you call a man
> "sir", you won't offend him, even if he'd rather be called something
> else. He will simply correct you (as someone here has already pointed
> out that he would do).
> Same goes for "ma'am": some women might object to "miss" and others to
> "madam", but I've never known any who object to "ma'am". Again, even if
> she would rather be called something else, she won't be offended. She
> will simply correct you.
> And that's why I said "sir" and "ma'am" would do very well as default
> forms of address in the UK. They are acceptable even to people who
> would prefer to be addressed in some other way.
OK, they're acceptable, but in ordinary use they're at least 100 times
less common than the equivalent words in French, where you'd address
any woman from the wife of the President to the cashier in a
supermarket as Madame (or Mademoiselle, if she looks young enough), and
similarly for Monsieur.
> I only know of one other form of address that is quite as catholic as
> the above two, and that is "boss". This has the advantage of gender
> neutrality, but is far less formal (which might not be appropriate in
> your circumstances).