So, yesterday, I did my usual stop on the way to the office (well, usual, now that I've landed butt first on my desk spinny chair in the office that I'm never usually in because I'm usually on the road). My new stop has been Caribou rather than my beloved Starbucks. I guess the big S just started getting old and I needed a change of pace.
So - anyways, I make my stop and hop out of my car with my nice metal mug that my BFF, Melissa, got me for my birthday or Christmas or something many moons ago (another aside - if you do Caribou, bring your reusable mug with as they give you $.50 off your tab - pretty cool!). I start my stride into the store and land behind a gentleman who is moseying in at a lazy Thursday gait. As I'm following him in, I'm staring at the back of his coat and concentrating on how slow he's walking and I sense two men sitting to the side of us and one of the men says "hi" but the coat in front of me doesn't respond and I'm thinking - how rude -- and -- how embarrassing.
We get up to the counter and I order my drink and as I'm standing there, someone comes up by the side of me and all of a sudden I hear "hi Alison, I don't know if you remember me", and I come out of my Thursday zone and I look over and theres a neighbor of my cousin (yes, thats YOU Debbie :). We chat briefly and I start walking towards the door chatting with him and then we wrap up the conversation and I take off as I have a meeting to go to.
It wasn't until about 11p.m. last night when I crawled into bed and was going over my day that I realized..... That "hi" that I had heard and thought it was so embarrassing that it went unrecognized... it was by ME that it was unrecognized. It was actually the neighbor that was saying hi to me as I walked in and I didn't even realize it and so I completely ignored the neighbor. How embarrassing for me!
And with that story, I come to the conclusion that I have on so many previous occassions - a good spy I would not make. I am HORRIBLE at recognizing anything or anyone that is going on around me. If I were a spy, this would be the conversation....
Spy Boss: "So, Alison, now that you've returned from the top secret mission that we sent you on to the meeting in Geneva, we need to debrief you."
Alison: "Okay - sounds good"
Spy Boss: "First thing we need to know - who was at this meeting?"
Alison: "Um - I don't know"
Spy Boss: "Alison - we sent you to see who was there"
Alison: "Really? Well - I guess I saw a couple guys and maybe a woman. I don't think I was clear that I was supposed to be noticing who was there. Oh, wait - no, I think I saw the woman somewhere else..."
Spy Boss: "Okay - well, can you at least tell us what they talked about?"
Alison: "Wait - what they said - um - I kind of didn't really hear what they were saying because they had a really great buffet with shrimp and stuff. But, MAYBE, they said something about taking over the world - but I could be wrong because I might not have heard that....."
And so the world would end because I just didn't pay attention to anyone or anything that was going on.
So - Debbie - you can tell Dan that he shouldn't take it personally that I didn't notice him and in so saying, you can relay this one little last story.
Once, about 4 years ago, I was working in D.C. over the July 4th week and that Friday I went to go home so I boarded my plane, got to my aisle seat, put my bags up and settled myself into my seat before all the nobodys started boarding the plane. As usual, I was about the 6th or 7th in line who got on the plane so some other people had boarded. As I sat down, I did notice, in general, that there was someone sitting in the seat across the aisle from me, about 15 inches from my right elbow. I grab my phone and my sunglasses and start to entertain myself as the whole hoard of others start clamoring on. As they clamor, I start getting a little perturbed by all the unusual disruptance. For some reason people are pausing and chatting and carrying on right by my seat. I finally look up at the people who had stopped by my seat and start to give them my "move it" glare and I find myself looking straight across the aisle directly at IL Senator Barack Obama... Yes, the Barack Obama who had been in the headlines of newspapers and news and all over because he was in the running for President and now everyone boarding the plane was wanting to offer their adoration and allegiance and here sat Alison - who didn't even notice Barack Obama.
So - if I see you in a store or somewhere and you talk to me and I don't even acknowledge you - please don't take it personally. Just remember that I have self-admitted that I have no talent for observing even things that are directly in front of my face. I know my talents - and I know my weaknesses and I know what jobs I should never do....
With that, I give you something that I have noticed... my adorable puppy in his new Target clearance bath towel....