The Perplexity of “Hello”

Tuesday I went for a walk with my daughter at a park that has a 1.5 mile paved loop.  At the beginning of the walk I passed someone that said, “hello” to which I responded “hi.”  As I was getting close to the end of my walk I passed the same person, we greeted each other with that akward grin/smile that screamed, “do I say hi again or not.”  I said “hello,” but it had the feeling as if I was saying “hello” to someone I did not know, yet this person and I had previously shared a “hello” already.  What was I to do?  Say nothing?  Ask how are you?  Question her political leanings?  This situation caused me to wonder about other situations when I am unsure if a hello is necessary or not.

  • I tend to look people in the eye when I am at the mall or store, when said person makes eye contact with me I usually say hello.  Is this an appropriate, “hello” time or is the, smile non-verbal hello, appropriate here.
  • When I am with Jenna our daughter many people look at her and then look at me.  Is this an appropriate time to say hello?  Or is this a casual pass that does not need a hello or the non-verbal smile
  • Which of these things are equal to, less than, or greater than a standard spoken hello?  1. The head knod hello  2. The mouthed but not spoken hello 3. The smile that is a non-verbal hello 4. When your hands are on a shopping cart or steering wheel and you lift your fingers to wave.

You can see my dilemna can anyone help?

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