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I'm Determined to Get Them to Say, "Hello!"

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I'm Determined to Get Them to Say, "Hello!"

Old 10-27-16, 09:04 PM
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Bassmanbob
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I'm Determined to Get Them to Say, "Hello!"

I cycle commute to work two to three times a week. I wish I could do it five days a week, but I need my car for the other days. During my commute, I say hello or good morning to anyone who's not in a car, and I usually get a kindly reply. If I leave my house at the right time, I pass a high school bus stop with about 15- 20 kids waiting for the bus. It's dark and about 6:50 AM when I pass them on the way to work. For the last two weeks, I've offered a cheerful group, "Good morning!" But I've received silence from them in return.

I'm determined to get some response before the end of the school year in June 2017. I'm not sure what my plan is to be successful, but I'm willing to try anything that won't seem creepy to the kids. Then again, to high school kids, a middle aged man just saying hello is probably creepy in itself.

Either way, I'm going to have fun with this and report back as things progress.


EDIT: 10/28/16 5 PM: After reading some of the posts to this thread, I agree that I have no business trying to persuade anyone to reply to my greetings. I will continue to say hello or good morning, but leave it at that. If there is a reply, then fine. If there is no reply, it's not my business.

Last edited by Bassmanbob; 10-28-16 at 03:14 PM.
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Old 10-27-16, 10:14 PM
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Sounds like middle or high schoolers? Here's an idea... keep greeting them every day that you see them. Then one day DON'T greet them, just ignore them or stare at them and see what happens. Maybe something in their normal routine (you) doing something outside of the routine (not greeting) will illicit a response.
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Old 10-27-16, 10:24 PM
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That sounds creepy, too.
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Old 10-27-16, 11:21 PM
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As someone who doesn't want any interaction from pedestrians and other cyclists, this intrigues me. Why are you so hell bent on getting a response?
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Old 10-28-16, 12:09 AM
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They will probably break some glass on the road and wait for you to ride through it. That will be the day they all say hello in response.
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Old 10-28-16, 01:59 AM
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Junior high school is the age when kids are too cool even to say hello to friends. Mostly they nod with faux-indifference and shrug back an acknowledgment. They begin to get over it around age 18 or so.

You're more likely to get a response from a cool nod or finger wave without actually taking a hand off the handlebar.

Or do a wheelie, stoppie, or some of this and you might get a golf clap.

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Old 10-28-16, 05:20 AM
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Text them hello
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Old 10-28-16, 05:27 AM
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Many kids are taught not to interact with strangers. It's unfortunate but there a quite a real creeps out there and parents are wary.
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Old 10-28-16, 05:38 AM
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Are they fully kitted? If so, don't expect a response.
There's nothing wrong with saying hello. However considering their age , there's nothing wrong with them not acknowledging it. I'd keep saying it. But peer pressure is a strong hold to break. My guess is once one breaks the ice the others will come around.
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Old 10-28-16, 06:09 AM
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I often get "cool bike" when I ride past a group of school kids, depending on which bike I selected to ride that day.
One time, years ago, I was on a self supported tour, riding a long wheelbase recumbent, towing a BoB trailer full of gear. I was riding through a town, slowly grinding up a hill, and a group of high school students engaged me in a conversation. I stopped and chatted with them for a few minutes.
They were very interested in both my machinery and my venture.
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Old 10-28-16, 06:19 AM
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Buy a GoPro, mount it to your helmet, they'll react. And trust me, they can see it in the dark, it happened to me all the time on my commute.
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Old 10-28-16, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by TenSpeedV2 View Post
As someone who doesn't want any interaction from pedestrians and other cyclists, this intrigues me. Why are you so hell bent on getting a response?
My thoughts exactly.
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Old 10-28-16, 08:17 AM
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nice example of self-centered behavior.

no one owes the OP a greeting or acknowledgement.

pressing people to respond to his presence is srsly obnoxious.

standing in the dark waiting to go to class is probably the last thing the kids want to be doing...try leaving them alone.
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Old 10-28-16, 09:24 AM
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Good luck with that. I would ignore you as well if I were in their place. When I was that age I didn't know the wonders of coffee, was often half asleep at that time, and couldn't care less about random people. That last one still mostly holds true.
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Old 10-28-16, 09:31 AM
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so many anti-social people in this on-line forum.
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Old 10-28-16, 09:33 AM
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Try asking them for a 32mm tire recommendation.
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Old 10-28-16, 09:44 AM
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Every ride that I take I shoot for a no comment/wave/head not/hello/etc. and I never seem to get it. All I want to do is ride my bike in peace and without being judged that I didn't wave back to a walker or another cyclist. On the bike is my time, commute, fun ride, whatever, so please don't bother me.
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Old 10-28-16, 10:11 AM
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Yikes! Anywho, I get the mentality of the original poster. These kids are a challenge that needs to be met! A summit that needs to be climbed! When adversity stands in the way of good manners, taking 'no' for an answer is not acceptable!

In a month you could put christmas lights on the bike? That would probably get a response. I've been thinking of doing it myself actually...a string or 2 of LED lights would actually be really handy for being seen in the dark!
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Old 10-28-16, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Bassmanbob View Post
During my commute, I say hello or good morning to anyone who's not in a car, and I usually get a kindly reply. If I leave my house at the right time, I pass a high school bus stop with about 15-20 kids waiting for the bus…For the last two weeks, I've offered a cheerful group, "Good morning!" But I've received silence from them in return.

I'm determined to get some response before the end of the school year in June 2017. I'm not sure what my plan is to be successful, but I'm willing to try anything that won't seem creepy to the kids.Then again, to high school kids, a middle aged man just saying hello is probably creepy in itself.

Either way, I'm going to have fun with this and report back as things progress.
Originally Posted by TenSpeedV2 View Post
As someone who doesn't want any interaction from pedestrians and other cyclists, this intrigues me. Why are you so hell bent on getting a response?
Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
My thoughts exactly.
Yeah, Bassmanbob, why?


Personally, I do wave, except where there are loads of cyclists, such as my early morning commute in downtown Boston. I’m not put off by a lack of response either. I do have a seemingly unique greeting besides, or in addition to a wave. I yell a hearty “YO.” It’s an easy syllable to shout, and IMO expresses a crusty comeraderie, yet does not expect a reply. Maybe you could try that.

Originally Posted by TenSpeedV2 View Post
Every ride thatI take I shoot for a no comment/wave/head not/hello/etc. and I never seem toget it. All I want to do is ride my bike in peace and without being judged that I didn't wave back to a walker or another cyclist. On the bike is my time, commute, fun ride, whatever, so please don't bother me.
A couple years ago on the Wall Street Journal morning news program on the radio was a feature segment about runners and cyclists greetin geach other. The most significant reason to do so, as I recall was that both participants in such an encounter face the same dangers on the roads and MUPs.
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Old 10-28-16, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
A couple years ago on the Wall Street Journal morning news program on the radio was a feature segment about runners and cyclists greetin geach other. The most significant reason to do so, as I recall was that both participants in such an encounter face the same dangers on the roads and MUPs.
While this is true, the same could be said for drivers in cars on the highway, in inclement weather, etc. They aren't waving to every other driver. There are a lot of people on bikes, and if I have to wave to all of them, or greet them, then I won't be having fun on MY ride.
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Old 10-28-16, 10:43 AM
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I was thinking my son didn't wave at the middle schoolers he passed waiting for buses while he was biking to the middle school. My daughter might but her friends are mostly going to different non-neighborhood middle schools so aren't out waiting for the bus when she goes by.
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Old 10-28-16, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by okane View Post
Many kids are taught not to interact with strangers. It's unfortunate but there a quite a real creeps out there and parents are wary.
At what age do you plan to start teaching them to evaluate people through observation/interaction/conversation and respond/act accordingly?
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Old 10-28-16, 10:53 AM
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I didn't expect the wide variety of replies. Some very funny and some interesting.


I like the idea of spreading a nice greeting, and brightening someone's day, even if brief. Perhaps I'm doing this to get the acknowledgement that I did brighten someone's day.


Self centered... hmm. I didn't realize what I was doing was such a difficult imposition on some. I will honestly consider this.
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Old 10-28-16, 11:16 AM
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I pass a busy intersection close by a high school right by the time they are getting dismissed. They look at me. I look at them. But I never acknowledge them, nor they me. It'd just feel weird. If I were stopped in a car would I acknowledge them? I think not. But whatever, if you feel compelled, then go for it. It's not like it's harming anyone.
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Old 10-28-16, 11:41 AM
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Do this as long as it's fun. If it stops being fun, stop doing it. And don't expect you'll ever get a hello. As was stated above, some kids won't respond because they're taught not to. Others don't know how to relate to adults. Others fear (or respect?) us as authority figures. But you may find one or two who will talk, eventually.
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