I tell my nephews and nieces don’t ever talk to strangers. I’m sure their parents have done that already but you can never say it enough with all them weirdos and creeps out there. And don’t be shy about offending or rebuffing anyone who needs help finding his or her puppy. In fact, many times, adults don’t talk to adults either who happen to be strangers. I think that’s a great policy.
Unless I’m that stranger.
Having said that, I was in an elevator with a dad and his son as we rode up to the connecting bridge to the Gold Line in Pasadena (metro train). I was with my friends and I decided to make small talk. I asked the kid where he and his dad were going. He answered “I don’t know…” to which the dad let out a chuck and asked his son “you don’t know?”.
The dad said they were going to a theater where you can watch old movies for $2. Two bucks!
There I was thinking I pay between $15-$20 for assigned stadium seats. I would do $2 even if I have to wait a couple of months. These days, I generally avoid the opening weekend of a big movie, the week after that, and also the week after that until I forget about it altogether. Plus, the dad told me the popcorns and drinks there were cheaper too.
So, there they were, father and son, riding public transportation, to watch a picture that’s a few weeks old for only $2 per tix. I’m gonna start going there from now on! In fact, I can bike there!
But I would have missed this bit of good news had I just kept my mouth shut, avoided eye contacts, and hope “they” don’t start talking to us (I was with a couple of pretty girls).
I guess I’m saying that many times, we’re more and more distant than before because of the way society is headed. Not getting to know neighbors or getting into friendly chats with folks you stand in line with for coffee or waiting in line at the Apple store seems to be the norm now.
I think as adults, you need to decide for yourself what’s good for you and striking up a conversation with people around you is actually okay. In some cases, I can imagine other people appreciate it.
So, if you’re a kid, don’t talk to strangers. EVER. Definitely don’t. But if you’re an adult and feel safe about it, I’m okay with that. Especially if I’m the stranger and you’ve got great local tips to share with me.