No Ma’am!

Something happened to me yesterday that has not happened before, and it really has me thinking.  I’ll start from the beginning.

I was grocery shopping for about a half hour.  Carefully picking the best produce and nice lean cuts of meat.   Minding my own business.

There was only one cash register open (and she was really slow –forgive me for saying this, but she was like a thousand years old).  I had things to do.  It was almost on cue that another worker appeared at the register next to her.

She was about 45 and pretty hip looking (minus the Jersey Shore-esque tan).

She told me to move to her line since I was next.  I began happily (and youthfully) trotting over to her.  Yes, people, there was a pep to my step as soon as she looked in my direction and started to say “I’m open now.  You can…”

Skippity Doo Dah! Me & my squeaky carriage with the crazy spinny front wheel zipped over… until she finished her sentence with “move to this line MA’AM

Everything got blurry and a bit fuzzy.

Slow motion.




I immediately felt my face become pink, then red, then purple. I stopped dead in my tracks and realized she couldn’t have been talking to me.  I looked behind me to look at the presumably nice old lady behind me to apologize for running (skipping actually) ahead of her.  Where were my manners?

There was a 16-year-old boy behind me.  That was it. She was talking to me.

I was Ma’ammed.

I turned back to her and slowly put my cucumbers on the short conveyor belt.

I was never “Ma’ammed” before.

Maybe I took it a little too seriously, but I’ve only heard of old ladies or at least middle-aged women called this evil pronoun.  I know she was trying to be polite, but she had no clue of the crazy spiral this sent me down!

Maybe it’s my impending 29th birthday (August 20th).  I know it’s not “old”, but it’s the last year of my twenties.  The carefree, easy, breezy, youthful, “just-a-few-years-ago-I-was-in-high-school” twenties .  On the way home from the public humiliation supermarket, I realized that it’s been over 10 years since I was in high school.  I am a wife and a homeowner.  I clip coupons.  I honestly consider a large glass of pinot, sewing a fabric flower brooch, picking my first squash from the backyard garden, and catching the latest episode of The Bachelorette a rockin’ night.

Exhibit A:

*long pause*

*scratches head*

I am getting nauseus older.


Has anyone out there had a moment like this?  Please tell me I’m not alone!   Share your story. Commiserate with a sistah.


25 responses to “No Ma’am!

  1. I feel your pain!

    I was at the doctor a couple of weeks ago….he told the nurse “this lady needs her blood drawn”……….it’s always been girl or young lady…..nope, now full on “lady”….ouch.

  2. Even though the ma’am thing is a sign of respect it really does hit a sore spot. But it’s just that we think it means were older, but we’re just becoming the fantastic women that we are. Thirties are only a frumpy mess if you let yourself go, and girlie you know you got the goods. It’s all in our heads the getting older stuff.

  3. You northereners are cray-cray! I now want to move there and call everyone maam! It’s not an insult!

  4. Oh the first time you are called that it really sticks with you! I have been called that many times now but the first time I was kind of like you thinking surely they were talking to someone else!

  5. your so funny and cute. i’m in my 40’s now so this happended to me a while ago. But is shocking the first time it happens to you. it doesn’t bother me anymore but when it first happended to me i was like “what? maam? me?

  6. Mindy, you;re so cute! Ma’am is not too bad though. I was “aunty-ed” once by a teenager. The horror…..!

  7. I found your blog via Pinterest but this post totally made me laugh. I’m 33 (gah!), but about a month ago when I was grocery shopping…I was kid-free and had my reusable Texas A&M grocery bags with me. The cluless 16 yr old checker had the gall to ask me…..”Did my KIDS go to college there?” Yes, he thought I looked old enough to have an 18 yr old?! LOL! I may or may not have had several of glasses of wine that night to forget that incident. I think young kids are just cluless…they have no sense of age unless you are under 18 like them! 🙂

  8. Isn’t it funny how the memory of first being called Ma’am can be recalled by like everybody!? I remember when I was first ma’am’ed. It was at a restaurant with a bunch of work people. It ruined the rest of my evening!

    Wait until you have kids and get called ‘lady’ or ‘so-and-so’s mom’. I think lady may even be worse than ma’am!

  9. LMAO, don’t even move south. Every.Single. Guy will call you ma’am. I’m like hello, I’m a miss!!

  10. Mz Mandy Pants

    I’m right there with you! I’m 28 and dreading 30. No real reason either. I don’t feel like time will all of a sudden catch up with me and I’ll be hit with the Old Lady stick right up-side the head. Just something about not having that 2 in front of the second number…

  11. Oh my goodness, yes. I was ma’amed a couple years ago and I still cringe when I get it — I’m 31 now. It’s about half miss, half ma’am these days. Boo. I don’t want to be a ma’am.

  12. Anytime ANYONE calls me Ma’am (oh yes. it’s happened many times in the past 1 or 2 years) I feel the need to blurt out I”M NOT OLD ENOUGH… but I never do.

    I just blush, get kinda angry… and sulk after.

    Women (!!!) should not call other women ma’am! Don’t they know? I hate being called MA’AM! I FEEL YOU GIRL!

  13. AHHH! It’s the worst. Now that I’m living in the South I don’t give it a second thought. Everyone calls you ma’am if you’re above probably the age of 14. It’s a sign or respect, take it that way. I’m originally from Maryland and none says Ma’am unless you are older and it seems like it’s an insult. I say “No Ma’am” to my dog when she misbehaves. haha.

    I was ma’amed once in the north and it was a shock but own it girl you are a hot woman on the verge of your 2nd round of your 20’s… that’s what I tell myself at age 34… errr 2nd 24 😉

  14. Oh boy, I remember my first Ma’am, It was not pretty, but I actually responded back and told him, yes it was him, not to call me Ma’am ever again!!! as I grew older it became easier to accept 😦

  15. 29 PSSSHHHTTT! The Dirty Thirty’s is where it’s at! 😉

  16. I’m in the south (TX) and I have referred to every female stranger since I was a girl as maam. Younger than me or not! That is how I was raised, so I wouldn’t think twice about being called that.

  17. It’s funny that you post this…Sunday, I was at Stop & Shop, the cashier was a young girl, maybe around 20. When she had finished ringing me out, and was handing me my receipt, she said “here you go, Miss”. I smiled! Took my receipt, said thank you and thank you for calling me Miss! She said when she was little, her mom alway told her not to say ma’am cos it was rude! hahahaha! I’ve been ma’am’d too many times to count…it was nice to hear “Miss”.

  18. Haha I thought you guys called everyone Maam, I’m sure I got that when I was over there and it’s definitely on TV shows so must be real 🙂 I get “love” over here which is too initmate in my opinion!

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