I act very sheepish and apologetic, and ask the person to remind me what their name is. I always blame myself, and explain that I'm often very forgetful because I have so much on my mind all the time.
I usually ask the person to remind me what their name is. And when they tell me their first name, I respond "I knew your first name. I meant your last name!" And if they tell me their last name, I respond that "I knew your last name. I meant your first name!" It's a great little trick and it works every time.
I just act like I know their name, I hope they don't notice that I'm not using it, and then I skirt around the issue by talking about what we did, what we talked about and where we were the last time we saw one another.
It's my job to know everyone's name. So I always try to remember something distinctive about every person I meet, and then somehow attach that distinction to their name so that when I see them, I always know their name.
Honestly, that's just not anything that has ever happened to me. I remember everything about everyone I meet — whether I want to or not. People are often actually quite surprised that I remember their name and the names of their children and spouses and pets, even if I haven't seen them in 30 years.
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