“Ladies and Gentlemen, elected by an overwhelming majority, the likes of which has never before been seen in this town, I give you your designated driver, your new mayor, Trucker Frankie!”

Hmm, What would be the first thing I would do?

I am lucky to live on the ouskirts of a smallish town where lots of us know each other. But in recent years I notice a very strange phenomenon. Sometimes when I do be out walking or jogging I might chance upon a Fair Maiden or Knightly Nobleman.

“Hello.” says I.  But no reply is forthcoming.

I ask you, what manner of creature is this world creating? How hard can it be to say Hello. I could be wrong but I think this trend has spread outward from the big cities. I do realise it would be impossible to say Hello or Hi to every man, woman and child on a busy footpath (sidewalk) in the big cities. But there are no excuses in the quieter areas.

For instance on a recent visit to a large city I found myself travelling on the street train (Tube, Metro, Subway). I was sitting alone when a lady, mid twenties, hopped on and made her way to the seat directly opposite me. She looked everywhere except at me. When I did eventually catch her eye I nodded and smiled.

Well, I might as well have flashed at her, or told her I would eat her liver with some Fava beans and a nice Chianti, given half a chance, because she immediately rustled about in her bag for a magazine to hide behind. She found one. It was called…Hello and probably full of stories and articles about people using actual dialogue, as opposed to telepathy, to communicate with each other.

It isn’t fair on my part to be singling her out. Maybe she was shy. But it beats me how modern society will watch movies or read books which show strangers striking up conversations with each other on every second page and yet in their own personal lives they feel it’s normal to look everywhere except at other humans when they are out and about. Some folk would sooner cross the road to cuddle a stray dog with possible Rabies!

There is a song stuck in my head all week; The theme tune from Cheers. I like the sentiment of it. I get a nice feeling when somebody goes the extra mile and greets me by Name. I try to do this myself when I happen to pass somebody whose name I know. Like “Hello Mary” or “Hey John”.

In an age where the governments of the world refer to their citizens by Number rather than by Name I think we should remind each other that we are More than just a number in their little tax book (there’s a song in that).

Our town isn’t too bad in this regard, just yet, but I would like to nip it in the bud. So…

“Now hear this. As your new Mayor I will personally put to death, without trial, anybody who doesn’t show some compassion for his or her fellow townsfolk.”

That should get them talking!

Thank you for reading


Here is the Cheers song for those too young to remember the show:

12 thoughts on “Cheers!

  1. That sounds like a solid plan, Frankie. In the meantime, perhaps you should carry a sign that has your name, email, blog URL and fake buttonss. It should read, “Frankie for fun. Friend me and we’ll chat”. Your computer will blow up! Sad, isn’t it?

  2. I just clicked on the Cheers song link and listened to the whole thing. I’ve never heard the song in its entirety and it gave me a good laugh! I know your topic is a serious one, and I agree with you Frankie that the world does sometimes seem to be a less friendly place than yesteryear, but that song is funny, and now it’s stuck in my head! 🙂

  3. I discovered when I moved to California that people are not very friendly. When I’d go home to my mom’s in Montana, everyone was friendly. Back then, I put it up to there just not being many people up there so they see another human being with a kind of relief. But now, I dunno.

    Like the chick in the classroom last week that had her earphones in and her music so loud she didn’t hear me ask her (3 times) politely to wait outside the classroom until her teacher arrived, who then got bitched off at me when I finally yelled, “GET OUT.”

    Considering the proven survival value of compassion, it should be normal rather than exceptional. People should do it in their own best interests. 🙂

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  7. I’m a foreign white guy living in the massively dense Seoul, South Korea so it’s pretty easy when you notice another foreigner on the street or public transportation. You would think that would lead to an instant acknowledgement and maybe conversation, especially when you are outside of the city where there are less foreigners, however, it always just ends up being awkward eye contact and a quick look away. I kind of found it weird at first, but then again I do it too anyways, so it’s hard to explain. But in 10 years I haven’t had one memorable random conversation with anyone on the street here. Probably won’t have done it at home in Canada either, like you are describing, but for some reason it stands out more to me in Korea.

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