...the voice of pensioners

First impressions – keep an open mind…

17 Aug 2019

Dear LPG,


I think that I am an old age pensioner who is typical for my age and I am a bit stuck in my ways I suppose.  My sense of fashion lost momentum about 20 years ago and I have stopped keeping up with the times; even for a woman of my age.  My musical knowledge has also fallen behind just like so many other aspects of my social mindfulness.  Perhaps there is just too much to keep up to date with these days, or my mind has reached maximum capacity for being aware of these things.  There was a time when I knew all the latest fashions, songs and television programmes, but I have lost touch I suppose. 


I was chatting the other day with one of my friends who made the same observation while referring to herself, before asking what first impression I thought she would leave with someone she had met for the first time.  I had to think really because it is something we don’t do very often.  The whole conversation got me wondering about how we see others that we already know and if we would perceive them differently if we were meeting them for the first time. 


At one point during my varied life as an employee, I worked as a telephonist for a taxi company that picked up a lot of people from the four main airports local to London.  Some would have pre-booked, but others would have just arrived, and we would have drivers on standby.  The job of the telephonist was to put the two together and while finding out where the passengers’ location was imperative, it was also important to give a description of what they looked like.   On one occasion I had a passenger with one of those voices that would be described as very deep for a woman but I established where in the airport she was, quite quickly.  I then asked what she was wearing and the answer came back, ‘A blue suit’.  I felt that my driver would need just a little more clarification and so asked, ‘is that a skirt suit or a trouser suit madam?’  It was then that I received the rather indignant reply, ‘You mean Sir!’


I have come to the conclusion that, when it comes down to judging other people fairly on first meeting them, I had no idea then and most probably have less of an idea now!  Perhaps, whatever the circumstance, making absolutely sure that you keep an open mind is the secret.


AK, Bellingham.