I want you to know that I find you fascinating. Yes, you - the guy on the bus listening to that terrible hipster music, the lady herding her four kids through the cereal aisle, the old man ordering coffee at Starbucks and looking lost. I want to know everything about you: where you’re from, what you dream of, who you love, where you think you’ll go when you die. You interest me because you’re not like me, and maybe I can learn something from you – even if, and perhaps especially if, I wind up hating you.
I’m sorry I’m staring. I was told long ago that it’s not nice, but I can’t help it. I’m not doing it to make you feel self-conscious. I just want to know something I didn’t know five minutes ago. If you say or do anything interesting, I might even stick you in a story somewhere. So keep talking, and I’ll keep listening. And I promise I’ll try not to judge.