The average Brit says sorry 2,920 times a year!!

In the past couple of weeks, you lovely Yanks have taken the age-old spirit of transatlantic cooperation a step further. In response to figures laying bare one of our less admirable national traits of constant apologising, the New York Bakery Co. has offered to help out their British cousins, offering free ‘New York Brashness classes’ on the streets of London.

The survey reveals that the average Brit apologises 2,920 times a year, equating to 233,000 times in their lifetime and the specifics are really rather interesting. ‘Sorry’ is often used as a response to someone else’s mistake, with 43% of respondents admitting to have used it after someone else bumped into them and 17% uttering the apology after having their toes trodden on. While somewhat bizarre, we must admit to having been guilty on this one a few times ourselves…

Thirty per cent say they use the s-word as a substitute for ‘excuse me’, and 67% as a way of interrupting someone else’s conversation.
The office is the most likely setting to hear ‘sorry’, with a third of people admitting to misuse the word at work and 37% saying they tiptoe around colleagues or issues to avoid offending someone. And it seems the brashness classes will be warmly welcomed, with 45% of Brits saying they would like to be more straight-talking, but worry about the consequences.

Sorry cake! Apologising nearly 3,000 times a year makes for hungry business.

All very interesting stuff , but it leaves us asking the question – is this actually news? We’ve always known the Brits to be an apologetic – dare we say it, even sappy (sorry!) – bunch. We’d love to hear about your experiences on this – are the Brits more apologetic than their American counterparts? Any amusing anecdotes would be hugely appreciated!

3 thoughts on “The average Brit says sorry 2,920 times a year!!

  1. Pingback: Weigh-in #21 – Hello, Englishman No. 4! |

  2. Shared a link to this post on my blog. I’m not sorry to say I think Britons are perfect just as they are and definitely not in need of brashness courses. (Incidentally, I say “sorry” instead of “excuse me” most of the time…something I picked up in the UK that stuck.) On an unrelated note (sorry!), we’ll be by next Saturday for breakfast and a shopping spree. Does the shop sell scones mix and clotted cream? And can you recommend any low-cal treats for an English tea party?

    • Yes, we agree, there’s nothing wrong with a bit of politeness. But it can get quite annoying… We do sell clotted cream and scone mix! But we are somewhat short on the low-cal treats i’m afraid… Pop by and we’ll all be more than willing to help you out on the day! See you Saturday!

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