Another symptom of my reverse culture shock is that I still have trouble remembering not to be nice. I would say that this is also a remnant of my years in retail; I automatically have an “I can help you!” face that causes people to ask me, “Do you work here?” in stores, even when I have my coat on.
So I smile and make eye contact often…and, given the ugliness that we are surrounded by these days, I guess I’m okay with that.
Today, I held the door for a gentleman behind me, and he smiled and said, “Thank you, Miss!” in a very exaggerated fashion. I quickly glanced at him and was debating whether he was about to ask me for money, then kept walking. He called out, “Miss?” and I thought, “here it comes…”
(In the interest of full disclosure, I was walking towards Starbucks. The other thoughts that flashed through that mind in that moment were, “He’s going to ask me for money and I’m going to say ‘no’ even though I’m about to walk into Starbucks and pay $3 for tea* and Jesus is not going to be pleased with my choices.”)
“Miss, are you Miss USA?”
My smile got even bigger as I laughed to myself at the thought of this. “No, I am not!” I assured him.
“Because you look like Miss USA.”
I hope that I said “thank you”. I certainly couldn’t stop grinning.
Just another day in Brooklyn!
(*Yes, I am buying $3 tea, aka “Trenta Shaken Black Tea with extra ice, please!”, even though I am barely making my rent. Don’t judge me. No, wait. Judge me. It’s ridiculous. I blame Dunkin’ Donuts for having tea that I am certain is not really brewed.)