What Fools These Mortals Be

| Melbourne, VIC, Australia | Working | November 2, 2013

(One of my colleagues is working on a customer account, where the customer has a very unfortunate last name. Everyone’s just had a laugh about it. The discussion turns to how because she’s a ‘Mrs’ she would’ve chosen to marry into the name. I’m not really getting involved in the conversation but am casually listening.)

Colleague #2: “Why not just choose to keep her maiden name? I mean, what about the children? They’d be teased at school!”

Colleague #3: “Yeah. It’s like, as an adult you learn to deal with it but when you’re a kid you won’t understand.”

Colleague #2: “Exactly! Names are important! It’s true; names really matter!”

(I decide to interject.)

Me: “A rose by any other name smells just as sweet.”

(Colleagues #1 and #2 look at me with blank looks.)

Colleague #2: “What?”

Me: “A rose by any other name smells just as sweet.”

Colleague #2: “What?”

(I repeat it again, as clearly and as eloquently as I can manage.)

Me: “A rose by any other name smells just as sweet.”

Colleague #2: “What?”

Me: “I’m quoting Shakespeare!”

Colleague #2: “Oh…”

Colleague #1: “So that means names don’t matter, right?”

Me: “Did you guys seriously not get the reference?”

Colleague #3: “I got it!”

Colleague #2: “Yeah, but that’s because you’re lame!”

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