Why do I do it? Why, when confronted or (as is usually the case) passing someone I know in the street do I automatically nod hello to them? Even when I don’t like them? Some I even actively detest.
Take the other day. The sun was shining. It was lunchtime. My heart was as light and joyous as one of those Kids From Fame who like to leap and pike their well toned legs above the bonnets of stationary cars. I was making my carefree way back to work after a lunch break in the sun. I was mentally miles away. And then suddenly out of the corner of my eye I noticed a car slowing as it past me.
Eye eye, I thought. And indeed I made eye contact with the passenger in the front. The window was wound down and within an instant I could see that it was one of the dodgy, defrauding gobshites who’d got me to build web sites for them a couple of years ago (before I knew they were dodgy I hasten to add). To cut a long story short I eventually found proof of their wrong doing – which they denied – but I was strangely kicked into touch by them soon afterwards. As it was the law caught up with them soon after that and their poxy business was forcibly liquidated. I consider that to be both poetic justice and a lucky escape for me.
Anyway, my opinion of these dudes is lower than a snake’s arse.
So why oh why did I nod to the guy as he drove past? Why? Why did I only think to sneer after he was half way up the bloody road?
It’s like an automatic response. I see someone I recognize and whether I like them or not doesn’t come into it. I am compelled to acknowledge the connection, compelled to semaphore my recognition of them. I nod. Like they’re a mate. Like I’m pleased to see them.
Most of the time I’m not. Most of the time I’d rather ignore them – pointedly and blatantly. Ignore them so hard it’s totally in their face. Some, like dodgy web geezer dude I’d quite like to give the finger to.
Why do I nod like a dog in the back window of a 1980’s family saloon? I hate myself for doing it.
Especially when, as I the case of dodgy web geezer git, he turns away and ignores me in return.