So last summer, I had a retail job. I was at the cashier when a familiar customer with his 4 year old son comes in. When ever he comes, he always likes to tell jokes and what not, so I thought I'd bang the first joke out this time. Big mistake.
When he came to the counter, he only brought one item, so I got the idea to joke and say "Just one item? You aren't stealing are you?" The man was Hispanic and thought that I was being prejudice in accusing him of stealing in front of his son, he did not realize I was trying to joke with him. I felt really bad making him feel like a criminal and have since then stopped joking with customers or people I don't know well in general.
When I reflect on what happened, I can't help but feel that the situation made me antisocial; I start to feel awkward in conversations with people and fear shedding some humor because I don't want that situation to reoccur. I went from being voted most sarcastic and funny in my yearbook to dry-humor guy just because I don't want to hurt people's feelings if they get offended.
My question to NB: Should I continue to obsess over what I say with others or should I careless about whether or not they get offended unintentionally?