The Grand Poohbah

I moved to the UK in 2000.

My kids still make fun of the way I talk.

I still haven’t mastered the art of cheek kissing.

And I still chuckle when I come across the extended version of drop down menus for titles. I mean, why stop at Mr, Mrs, Miss, Ms, (pronounced “Muzz”) when you can choose from these:






Colonel Sir


Doctor Mrs

Duchess (sorry, already taken)



Rear Admiral



Wing Commander

And I didn’t even include them all.

What’s your handle?

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24 thoughts on “The Grand Poohbah

  1. For real??

    Last weekend I spied Admiral Mullen, our Former Chair of the Joint Chiefs, in the lobby of my hotel, and of course there was nothing to do but run up through his security detail and say, “Excuse me, Admiral, could I get a photo?”

    So yes. It’s “Admiral” for me, Duchess. ;-)

  2. I am consumed with curiosity about the difference between Colonel and Colonel Sir.

    In this household, I am Queen. But I guess that title’s already taken on your side of the pond.

  3. I’m jumping on the Rear Admiral tee-hee bandwagon. That’s my favourite hands down. Although Baroness Bobbi and Wing Commander Neil does have a ring to it.

  4. An Army Sergeant I know tells her underlings, “Don’t call me Ma’am—I work for a living!”

    So I think I’d like to be Library Sergeant First Class, please.

    Or Marchioness, ’cause the clothes are better. Whichever.

  5. Captain, for sure.

    There’s this thing in Kentucky where people can receive the honor of being named a Kentucky Colonel. It’s a real thing. This is my favorite from the Time Line page on the 1985 Pope John Paul II accepts his Kentucky Colonel Commission by letter in which he “cordially invokes God’s gifts of peace and joy upon all members of this worthy organization.”

    I don’t know much about it except I think you have to be nominated by a Colonel before becoming one, and I’m pretty sure they’re a payment involved. Also, you get a certificate. Let me know if you’re interested and I can do some poking around.

  6. Please tell me Doctor Mrs is NOT the spouse of a doctor! I actually hate when I am forced by certain websites to fill in a title. Why can’t I just be me…title-less? Or title optional? I don’t think my ” title” describes anything about me other than my gender which for most things should be irrelevant and, where it isn’t, can be addressed head on by asking gender.

  7. I avoid titles whenever I can. Always tell folks that Mrs. Tod is my mother-in-law and definitely not me! Never had my children call my friends Mrs or Mr either. Guess I’m a renegade. So if someone wants to give me a title it could be Renegade Tod or Provocateur Tod :-)

    Funny place you live across the pond, Downith. But at least you don’t have our mayor!!!!!!

      • All the things I’ve read here that you’ve written, I bestow upon you the right to claim ‘writer’. Seriously, and personally, I think you can easily claim that. And I’ve had a few too many bear encounters. I do seem to attract them somehow. I’m not sure if it’s something to be proud of or something to be concerned about!

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