This article has the added bonus of containing a back story!
Aforementioned bonus back story: So my girlfriend accidentally let my kitten out into the hall, and then a neighbour must have accidentally let him out of the hall, and into the big, scary, wide world. Cue me having to walk around town, tracing his whereabouts like a 19th century detective, getting eye witness accounts and listening for bush rustles. Long story; short… After four hours of calling his name all over the place, a quiet, scared ‘meow‘ began answering me, and I brought him home.
Actual point of this post: People really don’t like people, do they! I, obviously, fit very snugly into that generalisation, but I do at least have manners. The only time I’m really out walking the streets is when I’m going to, or coming from, work; in which case I’m either miserable, or exhausted, respectively, and listening to earphones while staring at my feet.
On this journey however, I had no earphones and I was looking around, which meant looking at everyone I walked past and smiling or nodding or saying “Good afternoon, I’m looking for pussy… Cat! A pussy cat, I mean… I’m looking for my cat! Never mind…”
Let’s say I looked at, and made some sort of polite gesture toward, about 100 people. We’ll use 100, because percentages make me look clever, and I’m shit at maths. Also, it might be about right. Anyway, of the 100 people I smiled at; about 4% smiled back, 2% said something friendly, 60% made eye contact with me and then flat out ignored me, and 33% actually scowled at me, as if they thought I was about to try and mug them. There may be a 1% margin of error, but the guy who set himself on fire and then jumped into the sky singing folk songs was probably a mathematical anomaly.
So, yeah… The point of this rant is that people never smile at strangers. It’s not exactly an effort, and while I do spend some days with the words ‘Piss off, asshole‘ written on my forehead, this was not one of them. Don’t get me wrong, I’m really not a people person. I loathe human interaction more than most; but a simple smile isn’t exactly a big deal to do, in relation to the effect it can garner. Every time a guy smiles at me in the street, I think he should be my new best friend, and every time a girl smiles at me in the street, I calmly walk passed and then immediately think of her as ‘the one that got away‘. Point being; I love it when someone smiles at me. You should all probably do it more.
Also, be sure not to let my cat out again; lest I be forced to patrol the streets and interact with people once more…