Those people you don’t know but probably met once

So I’m sitting in Norris trying to come up with something to blog about (there’s been a lack of excitement in my life just studying and trying to stay warm) when I see this girl sit down a few tables away from me. Now she can’t see me — huddled behind a large support pillar at my two-top — which is probably good because she’d probably find it weird that I’m writing this.

This girl is one of those people. 

I see this girl at least three times a week. We have classes together; we both frequent Norris. Even though our paths cross often, under normal circumstances I probably wouldn’t have any idea who she was — except for the fact that at the beginning of the quarter, as she walked past my seat in class, she gave me a recognizing wave and a “Hey! How ya doing?”

Oh no.

Who was this girl? I knew immediately that I was supposed to know who she was, but I didn’t. Had we met at a party? Was she a friend of a friend? Had I met her sometime last year and the eight months away from NU made me forget?

It’s one of the most shameful, awkward moments you can have as a college student. You try desperately to act normal and pretend that you totally know who that person is. You feel like a total jerk because you’re obviously so self-obsessed that you forgot another human being. Like totally forgot them. But it’s also just a flaw of the human memory — blame psychology, right?

Now, after a month of seeing her so often, I’m often the one initiating the smile, the wave, and the “Hey! How ya doing?” She’s become a regular presence in my life, and even if I have no clue who she is, I actually enjoy running into her. She’s got a contagious smile — and she’s not some ass hole that forgets people she should know…

I think we all have one of these people, or more than one, and after a while it feels like you do know them — that they’re not so much strangers anymore. It’s these people that encourage us to at least try harder to take the time to recognize each other, and not just each other’s faces. I think you probably get what I mean.

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