1. I'm in the hallway talking to a colleague, and a student who took a class from me 2 or 3 semesters ago walks past, sees me, and deliberately puts her head down so she misses my smile and nod. I can't remember her name, but think to myself that I should check my roster from that class so I can say her name the next time I see her.
  2. Same student, 5 minutes later, is outside the building when I walk out to go to the library. She calls me by name and says "I was in your class a couple years ago" and I say, "yes, I remember." Then she says "I saw your class on [Fascinating Topic] that's at 1:00 on Tues/Thurs and I really wanted to take it. But I have a lab on Thursdays from 1:00-5:00. So would it be OK if I just came on Tuesdays?[No. What planet are you on that you think I would agree to this?]
  3. Leaving the library, I see a woman who looks familiar, and I smile and say hello and get an answering smile, all the while frantically searching my memory to figure out who she is. I'm 5 feet past her on the sidewalk before I realize that she sometimes teaches class at my yoga studio.
  4. I see Squirrely Grad Student who wants to talk about the comments I gave her 3 months ago on a paper she wrote at the last possible deadline to fulfill the incomplete I gave her in a seminar she took a year and a half ago. She says that someone smashed in the window of her car and stole her furniture out of it, but left the paper with my comments.
  5. I go to the big post office that's open until 7 pm. The tension in the air is almost palpable. Everyone is trying not to look at the well-dressed woman in the middle of the room who is berating another woman, apparently a stranger to her. She's yelling about how she's 45 years old and young people today don't know how to wait in a line, and should have brought a pen with them, and have been prepared for the post office. When I get up to the counter, the clerk says to me under his breath "she's been yelling for 10 minutes already." As I leave, an older woman says to me "I don't know why they didn't call security. Can you imagine her poor husband she's going home to? That was just embarrassing." [hmm, embarrassing hardly describes what it feels like to be standing in a post office with someone causing a huge scene. If she'd been a large male, no doubt security would have been all over her.]