Wednesday, September 28, 2011
There's this ritual the Mr. and I go through every time we walk. When we see others passing, my small town Mr. likes to smile and say hello. I'd love to smile and say hello too but I can tell 80% of people do not want to acknowledge you on the trail, I accept this and move on. My Mr., longing for a society circa 1950's where everyone still smiled at one another when passing on the street without thinking there was an ulterior motive, takes snubs personally. He'll wait for them to get out of earshot and then say "is it so hard to say hello to another human being?" I just smile and keep walking because I know this will continue at least 3-8 more times depending on how many people we pass. You've got all kinds of people on hilly trails. High school runners training after school, hardcore runners that don't care its pouring down rain, creepy guys walking by themselves with shifty eyes and you feel the need to note their height, hair color and clothing in case you need to give the description to the cops, couples spending time together like us or couples in the form of 2 women gossiping about this and that. I leave those in training and hardcore runners alone. They're there to work and they don't have time in between grunts and gasps for idle chit chat. Creepy guy does not want to know you noticed him which is exactly why you say hello and if you're feeling particularly ballsy, give them the ol "I'm watching you" finger gestures ala De Niro in Meet the Parents to let them know you've spotted them and can id them if necessary. Matter of fact, I leave everyone alone. I don't make eye contact because the Mr is usually ahead of me when we pass others so I don't see them first and I'll only acknowledge if I hear them say hello. I don't really know why. I suppose it's because I used to be the Mr. but I know times have changed and people rarely want to say hello unless they're about 40+ or are forced to because you're making uncomfortable eye contact with them. (Like my honey does)
I admire it. I'd love to have a society where we could all look each other in the eye and smile when we pass on the street or a trail. I don't see that happening. Who knows, maybe it's just in our neck of the woods. Hmm, no, I know it isn't because even when we vacation if you smile at someone, you get a look like they're going to call the police, threaten to cut you or they run the opposite way.
Do you smile and say hello to people you pass when you're walking/running/hiking? What about on the street?
*Don't forget to enter the running goals sticker giveaway in the post below by Friday if you're interested!*
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