Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Tuesday Tips: If You See Someone You Know, Say Hi

This may sound super obvious, right? Well not according to my generation. I swear there's this unfortunate social norm among people my age, and this isn't just my made up theory. I've asked multiple people my age about this social norm and they all said it's so true. 
The social norm is that if you are out in public and you see someone you know, who's your age, the "correct" thing you're suppose to do is walk right on past them and act like you never even saw them in the first place. 
Isn't that horrible!!!
I'll be honest, I have conformed to this "rule" in the past and it did not turn out in my favor.
A couple years ago my Mom and I were at our families church and we ran into one of her old chemo nurses. She introduced me to him and then he introduced us to his family, which included his 16 year old son who I knew of from school. We chatted for a little bit and then we parted ways and went about our lives. Then, I saw him at school a few weeks later and suddenly I didn't know what to do. Am I suppose to just ignore him? But that seems so mean! Should I say hi? Or should I just smile? 
We ended up passing by each other, having really awkward eye contact, and pretending like we hadn't ever seen each other before.
Of course I felt so guilty, especially since he's younger than me, but I thought I'd never seem him again and I thought ignoring him was the "right" thing to do. 
I saw him every single day last year at school on my way to 4th period, and every single time I saw him we had super awkward eye contact followed by a whole lot of silence. 
And bottom line, it's never ok to ignore someone because of some stupid "rule".
I so regret not saying hi the first time I saw him after we met! Not saying hi to someone you know when you run into them in public just creates unnecessary moments of awkwardness.
It can all be avoided if you just say hi to them or at the very least just smile!
Take it from me, if you do, you'll avoid a bunch of uncomfortable encounters.
But, at least one good thing came from my unfortunate encounter with my Mom's chemo nurses son. I learned to break free from my generations stupid social norm and from now on to say hi no matter who the person is or how well (or not well) I may know them.
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