Tuesday, May 19, 2009

To wave or not to wave?

So....this has been bothering me lately. I run on a paved path that can get crowded at times. I actually enjoy running when there are other people around, more so than in the winter when I was out there with only a few other brave souls. I wave and/or say hello to most people I pass coming the other direction, if they look up at me.

But...there are so many other runners/walkers who pass by and just stare straight ahead as if I wasn't even there. I watch them and it seems like they have to put so much effort into ignoring me. They can't just throw me a wave, or even just a nod of the head??

One day I got so annoyed with the non-wavers that I decided to say hi to everyone I saw, even if they tried to ignore me. The normal wavers waved back. About half of the non-wavers waved and smiled. The other half looked at me as if I was standing there completely naked, jumping up and down.

I can't imagine not waving and saying hello. There is a father/son that I see often. The son is in his 40/50s and the Dad appears to be in his 70s/80s. They are so very friendly. Always a hi, good morning, have a good weekend, etc. It is just nice to acknowledge each other.

So...how about all of you out there....are you a waver or a non-waver?? For the non-runners, how about when you walk around the neighborhood and see someone outside their house...do you wave or ignore? For the non wavers, do you find people like me annoying?? Do you want to give me a shove, steal my water and run away??


Marianne said...

Hahah - funny!! I've noticed the same things you have. The people who do not acknowledge me whatsoever annoy me. I don't need a wave but a tiny nod with a bit of a smile is enough for me. Hey! I exist too... ;o) When I feel ornery with the people who don't even look at me passing, I'll not only say good morning, but I'll say something like "have a wonderful day!" Ususally to their back. haha I say it kinda sarcastically. :O)

Mabry's Gamma said...


Sometimes I think people are just surprised at you (or anyone) for being friendly. Let's face it...the world is scary and I think that people think it the norm to be rude and unfriendly. I am a "hi are ya" person and if I see someone (usually a neighbor) in the distance looking my way I will wave. Keep up the waves and hellos, Sarah, you are a much better person for it and I bet if you were a fly on the wall you would probably find out that you made their day.


Pam said...

Sarah, you are way too funny! I'm a waver. When I take the kids for walks around the block I wave and say to people who are walking or are out in their front yards. There are some people who don't wave back and look at mt like I'm a Martian with two heads, but at least I know I was friendly.

ShutUpandRun said...

I mostly wave and smile unless I'm so tired and not feeling good or if someone is completely ignoring me. Waving helps take my mind off the pain of running. I also wave at the cyclists. I figure we are all out there doing something fitness related so I like to say hi.

Dustie said...

I am a waver (or sometimes a nodder) and it annoys me when I don't get the same back. This is funny because I moved from a bigger city where you are more likely to get the "finger" than a hello...to a very small town where EVERYONE waves. It was like culture shock at first...but I love it. I was thinking "wow, there are nice people left out there....". Just keep up with your waving and smiling --- maybe it will rub off! :)

Tanya said...

I'm a waver, I see the same people on my runs; they're mostly walkers with dogs or children and we've sort of come to know each other. I rarely see other runners but when I do I usually get at least a nod from them.

robison52 said...

I ALWAYS wave! I find that runners are in a very exclusive club and have the need to support eachother. I do find that some runners are taken aback, but many acknowledge the recognition by waving, smiling, or nodding their heads. I believe some women are fearful of males waving at them due to the weirdos out there and will ignore me. That's o.k. too.

runjen said...

I was just thinking about this during a recent run. I am definitely a waver but am amazed by the # of non-wavers! I may try your technique and just start waving at everyone!

Winnston said...

This used to bug me like crazy.

I'd wave and be ignored, and then think about it for a few minutes after we passed. I'd think like, who the heck do you think you are? Or, oh you are faster than me so you don't need to acknowledge me? Sometimes I think about stopping, grunting and clutching me chest, just to see of that gets a reaction from them. They'd probably just keep going.

I spent 20 years going to school and working in Manhattan, so I am used to ignoring people and being ignored in the appropriate setting. But 2 runners, coming towards each other on a trail, both enjoying their common pursuit, just passing each other pretending the other person is not there? Why? It is alot more work to ignore the other person than to acknowledge them.

I greet everyone I pass, and most do the same. The ones that don't, well they are the one with the problem, not me. It's on them.

greentigress said...

I say hi, but i'd like to take up waving a bit more, i think the friendlier u r out there the better and I do not understand not saying hi...
I say hi to walkers and cyclists too tho so i don't know if this is taking it a bit far!!

Nicole said...

Hmmm........that is a good question. I gues if people make eye contact I wave, I'm with you it takes way more effort to just ignore someone than say hello. I loved the junior college I went too, EVERYONE said hi, it felt to nice and friendly, then when I went to the big university I hated it. One time I feel going up the stairs, everyone just walked around me, I wanted to cry.

Sherri said...

I usually smile and say a quick hello. But a lot of folks don't. I don't want to bother them but I enjoy greeting others. Do what you want.

Rue said...

Hi Sarah :)

You're too funny! LOL Rich and I take an evening walk most nights and say hello to everyone. If they don't say it back Rich will say it until they do. It's a huge pet peave of his, so I understand. I think everyone should be friendly to each other because not only is it nice to know everyone that lives around you, but also because you never know when you might need help.

Have a great weekend!

I Run for Fun said...

LOL! I am not a waver, but I smile and say hello everytime. I like it when others smile/wave. Sure makes the world a better place!

Wilma NC said...

I'm a waver and a smiler. I find that most people respond, though some look surprised.

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