I’m walking two of my dogs this morning and down the side-walk comes a guy. Just a guy walking to work or school but I notice he’s staring at me.
I know I got a few hundred pounds of hound on leashes but I make eye contact with the guy for a sold four seconds.
I say; “Good mornin’.”
Look pal, you opened the social convention door by looking at me, now it’s time to follow through. I know I’m a sight with my canines but you made human eye contact and it’s time to respond.
Is it that they think they’re giving up a measure of power by offering a hello?
Are they fearful that if they say hello I will somehow become Jerry Sandusky and ask them for a shower?
There are many variations on this. There’s the woman who makes eye contact and when you say “hello” she turns away like your salutation was the equivalent of a Richard Speck date proposal. There’s also the marginal head nod that somehow communicates that they are far too important and preoccupied to engage their tongue and lips in motor activity. There’s also the pursed lip, quick look away that let’s me know that my friendly offering is equivalent to a leper saying “Shake!”
C’mon people, it ain’t that hard.
Just say “hello”.
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