Charleston Redux

Recall my morning-walk greeting story from Charleston. About 100% of folks responded to my “Good morning” with a nod, and often an extended “Good morning. Nice day” of their own. Exercising my perverse streak, I decided to replicate the experiment in Georgetown. (Hey, when I was growing up, D.C. was effectively a Southern town.) Well, you can more or less guess the result. Old guy drenched in sweat wearing a ratty old T-shirt that says “U.S. Navy Retired.” My “clientele”? Mostly self-important (forgive the editorialization) Gen-Xers on their way to Capitol Hill to bask in said self-importance while running the Xerox machine. No, not fair! Actually, people of all ages and economic strata. The result: 23 attempts on my part. Two responses, which requires stretch in one case. (My, I’d think, non-threatening “approach”: “Good morning!”—a little chirpy, and with a practiced smile. (Practiced from my many for-profit “Grip and grins” at trade shows.) Oh well …


(Alas, if I’d experimented in Moscow I’d probably have been locked up for the very act of smiling.)

Anyway, good morning!