So I’m sitting in a booth at the Cup & Saucer Café in Portland on Wednesday morning, having a late breakfast with my friend Shannon before leaving town to head up to Seattle, when a stocky gentleman with a shaved head and a pleasant face approaches our table on his way out, sticks out his hand, and says:
“I just wanted to say hi.”
Naturally, I reach out and shake his hand because that’s the polite thing to do in this culture. Plus, being a published author of three novels, I’m always under the delusion that people who recognize me are fans who have read one of my books. It doesn’t occur to me that I have one of those faces that looks like about 10% of the population.
So when I ask him for his name, because I have no idea who this person is who just walked up to me to shake my hand, he gets this slightly puzzled expression and says he thought I was someone else and apologizes for troubling me. He also says his name is John, or that he thought my name was John, I can’t recall. Either way, I’m not who he apparently thought I was.
I tell him no worries and say it’s nice to meet him, anyway, then he walks out with his female companion and doesn’t look back or smile, apparently embarrassed.
It’s not until he walks out of the Cup & Saucer that I realize he could have been a luck poacher who just stole my good luck.
Like Nick Monday says, most people will shake a stranger’s hand without giving it a second thought, so you don’t even have to think twice about what you’re doing and poof! Your good luck is gone. And you won’t notice a thing.
I’m just hoping this guy really did think I was someone he knew. Or else recognized me because he read one of my books and didn’t realize it. The delusion lives on.