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  1. Mehrgan's Avatar
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    #1

    Help with this please!

    Hi,
    Have we got any informal word for the formal marks that we make when we want to be polite with others? (maybe a rough synonym for Exchanging Pleasantaries)...Actually this is what you see in middle-east countries quite a lot (particularly when they say things they don't really mean, not to be insencere, but as a way to show politeness) Here are some examples:

    • Someone is paying for something and we insist it's not necessary, or they can be our guest! (Rarely do we mean it!)
    • While going through a door we insist the other guy should go first, and this may take us quite a long time!
    • We're having our meal when a friend of ours gets in...we stop eating and insist they should join us, even by standing up and bringing them to the table! ...etc.
    Now, please tell me what we can call this behaviour, or the verb we use for making such remarks... So many thanks in advance...
    Last edited by Mehrgan; 25-May-2009 at 21:06.


    • Join Date: Apr 2009
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    #2

    Re: Help with this please!

    As far as conversation goes, we make small talk. That's the first one that comes to my mind.

    (By the way, it's pleasantries, not pleasantaries. Just so you know.)

    In Taiwan, the idea of fighting over who gets to pay the bill for a group is taken to extreme lengths. I've seen people practically get into fistfights over who will "gain face" by paying the bill in a restaurant.

    Also, a situation where two people are trying very hard to "out-polite" each other by strenuously attempting to get the other person to go first until the situation reaches comic proportions is called an Alphonse and Gaston routine. The phrase comes from a comic strip that appeared in American newspapers a little over a hundred years ago featuring two bumbling Frenchmen who could scarcely go anywhere or do anything without their signature "After you, my dear Alphonse...No, you first, my dear Gaston" exchange.

    Greg
    Last edited by dragn; 25-May-2009 at 04:23.


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #3

    Re: Help with this please!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mehrgan View Post
    Hi,
    Have we got any informal word for the formal marks that we make when we want to be polite with others? (maybe a rough synonym for Exchanging Pleasantaries)...Actually this is what you see in middle-east countries quite a lot (particularly when they say things they don't really mean, not to be insencere, but as a way to show politeness) Here are some examples:

    • Someone is paying for something and we insist it's not necessary, or they can be our guest! (Rarely do we mean it!)
    • While going through a door we insist the other guy should go first, and this may take us quite a long time!
    • We're having our meal when a friend of ours gets in...we stop eating and insist they should join us, even by standing up and bringing them to the table! ...etc.

    Now, please tell me what can we call this behaviour, or the verb we use for making such remarks... So many thanks in advance...
    Good manners.
    Social courtersies.

  2. Mehrgan's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Persian
      • Home Country:
      • Iran
      • Current Location:
      • Iran

    • Join Date: Apr 2009
    • Posts: 1,724
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    #4

    Re: Help with this please!

    A big thanks to both gentlemen!...Just one query, can I conclude that except for the phrases you've already given we haven't got any verbs reffering to these activities? Say, in a phrase like this: "we were quite late but still they kept ...ing!" Again, a special thanks to dear Abglika for his efficient points...

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