INTERACTIONS I HAD WITH STRANGERS LAST WEEK

  1. Karen
    Karen stopped me on my way to BART, and her opening was, "Excuse me, I'm terrible with directions." I said, "Me too, so this should be interesting." She walked with me the rest of the way to BART since she knew she parked near the station, and she told me that she thought that people like us were just bad at directions because we're perceptive in other ways (we both agreed that we're good at reading people). As I walked into the station she said, "Remember, you're gifted!"
  2. Woman collecting for the Buddhist temple in Oakland
    She stopped me and didn't speak English very well, but said, "Beautiful, beautiful!" and gave me a pendant that said, "WORK SMOOTHLY / LIFETIME PEACE." She also took my hand to put a string of prayer beads on my wrist. I was on a smoke break and didn't have my wallet, but I went back up to the office to grab a few dollars and bring her some tea, since it's chilly out. She held the cup briefly and then put it back in my hands.
  3. Ravi
    I met Ravi outside the Embarcadero station, he told me he hated smoking (which I was doing) and I agreed to get one drink with him because he seemed odd in a way I'm instinctively drawn to. At one point, he said, "You might be a genius," and I told him he was probably right, then he told me humility would go a long way, so I decided to go home. He got on the same train as me, I continued making polite small talk, then he followed me home and wouldn't leave until I threatened to call the cops.
  4. Cashier at Uniqlo
    I was doing the last of my Christmas shopping. My mom wants sweatpants so I bought her some even though that seems like the sort of gift that will make me look like a lazy daughter. I was really burnt out so I wasn't chatty, but while I was being rung up, a woman behind me asked her children, "Are you hungry?" and the cashier replied, to herself, "Yes!" and we made eye contact while I smiled and followed up, "Always."