An Observation

Coming out of my office last night I was confronted by a realization. I have been working late into the evening due to a patient’s need and as a result I have been in my practice building much later than I usually am.

What happened last night was as I was coming out of my office I ran into a couple employees coming out of one of the other offices in my building. I went through the same process I do with every person I see in some sort of public setting, I smiled and said good evening.

I even did this in the bit too distant past when we were all wearing face masks and every time I told myself they can’t see me smiling….but they do know, don’t cha know

Typically people will ignore me entirely, which is fine, or I’ll get one of those cool guy s’up head nod things, which is also fine. I even on rare occasions get a verbal response, usually a parroting of whatever I said, which is fabulous.

Not last night. No last night my greeting was met with a terrified recoil. The young lady closest to me (but still as many feet as the hallway would allow away from me) actually pulled her yoga matt closer to her body.

I continued my journey to the shared space restroom thinking how bizarre it is how people react to me, but really to other people in general. I’m not threatening looking, well at least not in my mind, and I am also several decades older (both in appearance and in reality I would wager) then both of the women who were passing in the hallway. We were even, in outward appearance anyway, racially similar in appearance. oh and I was wearing a suit which I like to think of as not the serial killer choice of uniform.

The only thing I could come up with was that our office building is in an older part of town and it was a little after 8 pm.

So the same old me, who has been greeted with such relief in expression and word by so many patients and nonpatients over the years, who appears to be safe enough for strangers to approach in all manner of places to have conversations I am in fact not interested in having, the same person small children and animals of all sizes and species love to approach for a kind word and a pat on the head, the same old boring me is apparently threatening enough looking to recoil from after the sun goes down.

Maybe I’m a vampire?……

2 responses to “An Observation”

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