My neighbor often sits outside the building, so I often pass him as I’m coming and going from my apartment. We don’t have a clear “when to say hello” policy, and it bothers me. I’d like to sit down with him and propose the following:
- If I’m carrying a heavy thing, no hello.
- If he’s eating, smoking, or drinking, no hello.
- If he’s sitting with a neighbor I don’t know, no hello (I don’t want to be introduced.)
- If I look exhausted/sweaty, no hello
- If either of us has headphones on, no hello
- If we’ve said hello within the past 2 hours already, no hello (unless as a joke)
Otherwise: say hello.
I think we’re both on the same page that we’re just looking for a saying hello buddy (but NOT an acquaintance-ship or friendship), so we really need to limit these hellos and not burn out. The alternative would be to develop an acquaintance-ship (by asking questions like “How are things going?”, “What are you up to today?”, “Did you see the cricket match last night?” every 4th time I pass by). But that would be a huge time commitment that I cannot make right now, given my current schedule.