I get recognised in the street quite a lot. Sometimes it’s due to blogging, other times it’s due to being on TV (glad that people are watching our show!) but mostly it’s because I am very recognisable. When I used to work at the department store, people would recognise me when I was shopping in other stores, and ask me for help!!
Unfortunately the regularity of being recognised does not translate into the skill of me easily recognising others. Many times someone will stop me, have a conversation like we are old friends, and then walk away leaving me saying “who was that?”.
Lately I have been getting recognised due to being in Frankie Magazine. It’s been really nice. A girl ran after me as I left the train station on my way home, asking me if I’m the one she’s seen me in Frankie. A colleague in the lift congratulated me, saying it’s her favourite magazine too. I bought a top from Portmans and the sales assistant told me she enjoyed my article. A fellow shopper stopped me at the farmers market, wondering whether it was me she’d read about in Frankie. The lovely owners at my local news agency are so supportive of me. Bob asked me to sign a copy for him. I told him Frankie is his type of magazine.
I remember the first time I was recognised as a blogger. A guy saw me on the City Circle tram. I’d only been blogging a few months, and he told me all about my blog. And then he invited me to an event. I couldn’t stop grinning. Another time, I was walking to work with a colleague. A lady passed us, looking back to say “I love your blog” without breaking her stride. That felt cool. My colleague asked what’s a blog?
Lots of bloggers I know enjoy being recognised too. Nikki says it’s great to put a face to the people who read your blog, Kimba says it’s good to know not all readers are spambots, and Corrie says “they really do see the real me as I usually have kids tugging on the pram to keep moving and I’m not looking too glamorous:)”. Being recognised can come at inconvenient times, as Glowless told me, like in a doctors surgery where she wasn’t feeling her best.
I do get a rush when blog readers come and say hello in person. It’s nice. It is lovely to meet readers personally, and also get some feedback about my writing. I always stop to say hello, but sometimes it’s awkward because there’s always that imbalance of knowledge where they know so much about me and I generally know very little about them. Sometimes they are so very excited to see me (which I am truly flattered by) and express their enjoyment so much I can’t get a word in, other than a thank you before they rush off (like the lovely woman at Borough Market in London). I met a woman at a meeting in my day job – it was her first day on the job and the first thing she said was that she reads my blog. I never expect my blog to be discussed in my day job, because I keep it so separate.
I was at a restaurant the other night, queuing up to order my main meal. I had previously eaten a snack, and had a drink and took the obligatory photo for Instagram. A girl excitedly called my name – she said “I knew you were here!” because she had seen my photo. Haha! It was so lovely to meet her – we chatted for ages, and I hope to catch up with her soon. I was definitely reminded that my digital footprint could lead someone to the floor of a restaurant.
Last week I was out at a pub with a friend. We drank lots and stayed out til 1.00 am on a school night. Oh. My. Hangover. On. Friday. A bacon and egg roll was on the menu for breakfast. We were watching a band when a smiley guy came up to us and sat down next to me, exclaiming “I USED TO GO TO PRIMARY SCHOOL WITH YOU!!” and regaled stories of how he remembers me in the annex. I asked him his name, but it wasn’t familiar. I have a good memory, but I just couldn’t place him. I asked him what school he went to. It turned out, he went to a totally different primary school to me. But his memory out-did mine that night. When I was in year 5, I did a touch typing course at the Albury TAFE college. The TAFE course was designed for budding writers. I learnt to use Word Perfect. And I still type with about four fingers (but very fast, without looking). The course was half a day, each Friday, for one term. Because my parents worked in Albury, and we lived 40 minutes out of town, I organised to go to a primary school in Albury for the afternoon. One afternoon a week, for one term. And he remembered me from 1992. Crazy! I still look the same.
So we chatted, he had a friend with him who I said looked very young (“it’s all the moisturiser I use”, he said, and I said the same about me), and then he left for more drinks, waving each time he came back to the bar.I said to my friend that I am really bad at recognising people. I said to him that if I went five years without seeing him, even though we are really good friends, I’d probably ask him who he was. And then…
This beautiful woman comes up to me and said hello. I smiled at her, probably looked blank. Who are you? I wondered? “We worked together right?” I asked her. “No, I played before Bob Evans. I am Thelma Plum“. It was a complete D’Oh moment. She’s famous, a really great singer, and I did not recognise her. We couldn’t stop laughing and I felt really stupid. She complimented me on the review I wrote, and I said I can’t wait for her EP. I said I hope to see her soon, and really hope next time I do see her, I know who she is.
If you have come up to me to say you read my writing, thank you. I do hope others will continue to stop me to say hi.
Do you get recognised because of the media you make?
Do you have any tips for remembering faces?