I do like that term "Sir." Originating in the days of Knighthood, and still awarded as a title of honor in England, it certainly is an elevating expression. Yet I believe in some circles, like the work "man" so many adolescent males use to address each other, "dude" is a way of saying, "I see the man in you." It is an honoring expression.
After a few exchanges, it turned out that the man who sent me the email had been an Eagle Scout, and later in his life attended the U. S. Naval Academy. Both of those experiences are powerful forces for instilling a strong sense of respect for others.
Personally, after this "wake up call," I'm thinking I'm just going to pay more attention to the word "Sir," in my vocabulary when addressing males of any age. As I've gotten older, I'm hearing it pointed at me more often and liking it. Can't imagine other men wouldn't also.
Then there is always Sir Dude!
What do you think?
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