Wednesday, September 5, 2012

What People See, What People Expect, and Public Transportation

I took an interpersonal communications class at the university when I was 20 or so.  I remember one day we were assigned 5 different people in the class who we had to look at (not speak to) and determine a) what they did for a living OR what their major was, and b) what kind of music they liked best.

We had been in class a couple of days, so it wasn't 100% scientific--we had had short conversations.  However, it was amazing what we deduced about people, just based on their looks:  hairstyles, clothing, etc.

The train first thing in the morning is a good time to ride.  Mostly it's filled with people headed to work and students.  You can even make guesses from there.  That boy across the aisle from me?  He was MAYBE 15, his hair was not combed, he was studying a book of monologues--he was headed to the performing arts high school.  The kids across from me?  At first I thought he was in high school, but he had purchased a "used" calculus book, so I presume he was a really fresh freshman at the U, studying for his pre-calc test.  The man two rows behind me had the look of a COB worker:  white shirt, tie, suit (including coat).

Another man got off the train at my same stop.  His button-up shirt was colored.  Carefully combed hair. He was wearing a tie and nice slacks.  Shoes polished.  Definitely not COB, but definitely business of some kind.  Then he opened his mouth and said, "I hate this sh--."

Definitely NOT what I expected.

I wonder what people expect from me.  Do I validate, surprise, or disappoint?


Kim and Preston said...

In my book you validate :)