Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Try a Little Kindness

I conducted a social experiment yesterday. I've always been a friendly person. I grew up in a town where everyone knows everyone. Everyone always greets everyone, usually by name. I've come to the realization that maybe my community is another planet when it comes to this area.

When I head out to the city for a sporting event, concert or amusement park, my goal usually was to make anyone who made eye contact with me smile. My friends usually make fun of me, but I am almost always successful. People genuinely smile back. A few, smile back, with the look that says they think I am crazy, but they smile back.

Yesterday, I decided, I wasn't feeling like being the World's Greeter. Instead, I opted to just give a smile to people I know and see what happens. Sadly, nine out of ten times, I was ignored. I was ignored by people who are supposed to be acquaintances. I can't really call them friends, now can I? Friends would never do that. How is it that I can make a perfect stranger smile back at me, but I can't get people I know to acknowledge me unless I do it first?

The whole experience made me feel very insignificant. It was almost like I didn't exist. It was sad.

I hope that today, when I return to being the World's Greeter, that I make you feel significant when I greet you, by name and give you my smile. It's called kindness and respect and it's something that is lacking.

I want everyone to join me and become World Greeters. Make someone smile. Make them feel special. Spread a little love. Try a little kindness.


Burgh Baby said...

Alexis went through a brief stage when she would say, "Hi!" to every person she would see. It was heartbreaking to realize just how many people won't take the time to acknowledge a moment of kindness, even when it's offered by a baby.

I would smile at you. :-)

erin said...

Now this is something I can get behind, for sure.

Brookline is like, the most unfriendliest town I swear. I know I'm always ranting about hating ppl, etc, but truth be told, I'm actually pretty friendly by nature. So when I walk past someone on the sidewalk, I always meet their eyes and say hello. More often than not, I'm ignored, but when I am acknowledged, it's usually nervously.

You can smile at me anyday!

(P.S. I'm going to try and schedule another game night soon, it's been way too long!)

OlRedHair said...

It's amazing how many people ignore me when I say hi. On occasion I've been naughty and said something ungracious under my breath. :)

Crystal said...

I tend to be shy out in public and will look down when passing others on the sidewalk.

Tomorrow, I will be a more friendly for you.

Sophie101 said...

As stated above by I think it was burgh baby--Jaden says HI to everyone and is so polite to everyone, she is more sociable than her parents lol normally people smile and talk back but I have had many people just refuse to say HI to her or smile at her. It's so rude. Many people today do lack respect and kindness--you are so right. I picked up a sippie cup for a lady in the store the other day, with my sore toe I wobbled over and got the sippie cup for her and handed it to her, do you know she never even said "thank you" !?

Sophie101 said...

Derrr to me I meant to say above I have had the same situation as burg baby LOL I am going crazy these days, mind isn't with it. LOL

Bob said...

Everytime I read your blog , I smile. Does that help???