Once Twice Two Times A Lady

1. When I had my crappy dinner in the outer reaches of Baltimore this week, the waitress referred to me as “My Lady” every time she came near me. It was a slightly shabby, not-fancy-in-the-first-place restaurant, not King Arthur’s court. But she was consistent about this formal term of address and by the time I finished my crappy dinner, being referred to as My Lady didn’t sound odd at all.

2. I was in a central NJ Walmart before 8am today buying a bathmat. When I was almost at the checkout counter, a much older man with an enormous hearing aid RAN in front of me to check out his single onion and a box of some kind of processed food. I am starting to really resent people with good knees. Anyway when it was finally my turn, the woman behind the register said to me “hello lady” in a very flat tone. At the end of the transaction, I said thank you and she said “thank you lady” in the same flat tone.

Both of these women had Russian accents.

What is going on?


7 thoughts on “Once Twice Two Times A Lady”

  1. There are a lot of Russians and Poles in Baltimore. Where did you eat? If you get a chance go to Little Italy or to Eisenkrantz. The youngest waitress at Eisenkrantz has got to be 55 and the food is so good. It’s like eating in your grandma’s den.

    1. I just checked Google Maps and it turns out my business location (Windsor Mills) when I go for this type of meeting is 20 miles from Eisenkrantz. It sounds like just the kind of thing I like and I’m making a note of it for my next trip there. Thanks!

      I ate at a nearby place called City View Bar & Grill. Now that you mention it, the waitress and the Walmart checker could have been Polish.

      Several years ago, I did a week long tour of some medical facilities in MD associated with Johns Hopkins and one day landed near a mall for lunch. It was good luck to stumble upon a place called Zappata’s in Columbia MD. The Mexican food was really good there, even though it took me two tries to get into the place because you have to walk through a pool room to get to the restaurant. I just found their business card last week when I was cleaning out some handbags, and it turns out that is a reasonable distance from my base, too.

  2. I’ve seen the “My Lady” phenomenon (this was from an older African-American man who was my waiter). I think it’s what people do when they think you’re too old to be referred to as “miss” but might take offense at “ma’am” (because they think you’ll think they think you are old).

    I actually kind of liked it. I get “ma’am”ed a lot (teach college in a strongly Southern-influenced area) and it was a nice change.

  3. My first thought about the waitress calling you “My Lady” is that she watches Game Of Thrones! Off with her head!

  4. At first I thought it was sarcasm, but maybe it’s a Middle European thing. In any case it’s disturbing and if it ever happens to me I won’t like it. (Highly unlikely here where there are very few Middle European folk.)

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