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    #1

    excuse my back!

    When you sit somewhere that some is behind you, if you want to be polite you say “excuse my back”, right?
    I want to know if there is any particular answer for this idiom or not. In my culture we say something that if I want to translate it to English word by word it will be something like this “the flower doesn’t have back or front”.
    If you know something about this situation please tell me.
    thanks

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    #2

    Re: excuse my back!

    hello? is there anyone who can help me about this?
    please?

  1. queenbu's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: excuse my back!

    I don't think that in English an answer such as yours (which is very nice!) exists.
    I would say 'It's alright!' or 'Never mind!'
    I'd wait for the native speakers.

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: excuse my back!

    Quote Originally Posted by subzeroking View Post
    When you sit somewhere that some is behind you, if you want to be polite you say “excuse my back”, right?
    I want to know if there is any particular answer for this idiom or not. In my culture we say something that if I want to translate it to English word by word it will be something like this “the flower doesn’t have back or front”.
    If you know something about this situation please tell me.
    thanks

    I don't think I've ever heard 'excuse my back', although someone might say 'Excuse me if I talk over my shoulder' [if you're going to talk to them] or 'Excuse me if I don't talk to you. [There's no room for another plate on your table - or some other excuse]'. When I was in Spain, eating in a student canteen, I was very surprised when a total stranger apologized for having his back to me (so surprised that I didn't catch the expression - something including the words darle espaldas (perhaps a Spanish-speaker can fill me in)


    b

  3. queenbu's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: excuse my back!

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    I don't think I've ever heard 'excuse my back', although someone might say 'Excuse me if I talk over my shoulder' [if you're going to talk to them] or 'Excuse me if I don't talk to you. [There's no room for another plate on your table - or some other excuse]'. When I was in Spain, eating in a student canteen, I was very surprised when a total stranger apologized for having his back to me (so surprised that I didn't catch the expression - something including the words darle espaldas (perhaps a Spanish-speaker can fill me in)


    b
    No, BobK, it's not when you talk to someone over your shoulder. It's just if you sit with your back to them. I think in Italian, they say 'Scusate le spalle' which would be similar to your Spanish version. I would say it at a staff meal, for example, not to a perfect stranger, though.
    'Excuse my back' seemed so familiar to me. Strange that you've never heard it before. - queenbu

  4. BobK's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: excuse my back!

    Quote Originally Posted by queenbu View Post
    No, BobK, it's not when you talk to someone over your shoulder. It's just if you sit with your back to them. I think in Italian, they say 'Scusate le spalle' which would be similar to your Spanish version. I would say it at a staff meal, for example, not to a perfect stranger, though.
    'Excuse my back' seemed so familiar to me. Strange that you've never heard it before. - queenbu
    I like the idea (of apologizing for apparently ignoring someone), but I just haven't met it (as a fixed idiom) in English - although, as I said, people who feel it often make up their own apology.

    b

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    #7

    Re: excuse my back!

    native speakers! where are you?
    if you know something, let us know, please!
    I'm waiting!

  5. queenbu's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: excuse my back!

    Quote Originally Posted by subzeroking View Post
    native speakers! where are you?
    if you know something, let us know, please!
    I'm waiting!
    BobK is a native speaker!

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    #9

    Re: excuse my back!

    There's no set phrase in English. You could just say 'excuse me' when sitting down.

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