All of my extravert friends and family members are going to whine and wail about this one.
A faux pas (French for “false step”) is a kind of social blunder, something rude or inconsiderate, probably done unintentionally out of ignorance or thoughtlessness.
The classic example of a faux pas is the person who drinks the water out of the finger bowl at the fancy restaurant and wonders why the soup is so bland. Of course, that example falls to the floor with a solid THUD these days, because who has ever actually eaten a meal where you were presented with a finger bowl at the table? In modern American culture the equivalent would be eating the moist towelette that (used to) come with your meal at Kentucky Fried Chicken, which would be less of a faux pas and more a cry for help.
ANYWAY. If you’ve ever asked a bloated lady when her baby is due, you’ve committed a faux pas.
My personal pet peeve of faux pas is the uninvited, unexpected, unannounced visitor/guest. Particularly total strangers, overpriced vacuum cleaner salesmen, and the religious sort. I dislike waking up in the morning to houseguests I’ve never seen, never met, and don’t recognize. It messes with my internal compass, makes me feel all out-of-sorts, and when they leave, I want to scrub the house with bleach (shades of Nero Wolfe, here. Oh wow! There’s another of my Archie crushes! Archie Goodwin!)
My husband used to be the one who brought random people home.
He called it “ministry.” I called it “torture.”
We eventually came to an agreement… he would ask, or at least warn me, before he brought random strangers home, and he wouldn’t bring them home to keep them.
Now my boys are the ones who are bringing people home, and at all hours of the day and night. Ergh. Do I really have to explain this all AGAIN??? Obviously I do.
I used to fall prey to the “you should just be more hospitable” thing, or the “if you loved them like God does…” Yeah, well, sue me. If God wanted me to be more hospitable He would have installed that program instead of the introverted one.
Meanwhile, all you extraverts who show up unannounced, or bring people home uninvited, and all you weird people who randomly couch surf through the homes of total strangers, cop a clue… showing up unexpected, uninvited, and unannounced is rude, with a capital “R.”
(Yes, I’m a wee bit perturbed today, by the commission of this very faux pas… can you tell?)