I’ve got my eye on you. Yeah, you. I’ve been watching you for some time now, and you didn’t have a clue. Nah, I’m just teasing. Well … partially. I people watch. It’s part of the writer gig. We can’t help it. People fascinate us. Mannerisms, clothing styles, the way people interact with each other – or the way they studiously ignore each other. Hair styles, hair COLOR (hey, it’s all fair game). For the record, I wish I had the nerve to get one streak of bubblegum pink in my hair. I’d totally rock it.
I have to wonder if people would make a conscious effort to change their behaviors if they knew they were under the microscope, so to speak. The person who enters a store (or exits) only to stand in everyone else’s way while they, what, collect their bearings? Interesting. Or the not-so-happy family at Disneyland, that are spending their precious quality time screaming at each other, instead of enjoying their vacation. (Okay, admission: Hubby and I people watch at the Disney parks and can’t help but giggle when we discover one of these free shows.) 😉 I know. We’re terrible people.
People watching has its disadvantages too. The guy picking his nose at the stop light? Where’s my eye bleach? Wardrobe malfunctions. Litterers. It’s amazing what people will do when they don’t think anyone is paying attention.
And then there are the moments worth watching out for. The ‘pay it forward’ moments that make you tear up and give you the warm fuzzies. Folks treating each other with kindness. Reaching out a helping hand. Offering up a friendly smile and a hello. Parent/child bonding. Human/pet bonding. Yeah, I’m a sucker for a good dog-spoiling moment.
Even if I’m not jotting things down in my handy-dandy notebook, you can be sure I’m taking it all in and filing it away for future reference. Whoever said “Life is not a spectator sport.” didn’t know any authors. So if you walk past me on the street and I’m squinting at you, it’s not that I don’t like you. I’m just trying to decide which of your facial features would look best on my next hero or heroine.
Just remember, you never know when someone is studying your movements. Be kind. Look for a garbage can before you throw that wrapper on the ground. And for God’s sake – use a tissue! Just because you are in your car does not mean other people can’t see you. *shudder*
Okay, now it’s your turn. What is your favorite people watching moment? The good, the bad or the eye-bleach moments?