Can you hear me?! Hello?
I didn't think so...
As I walked towards the South Oval this afternoon, in excitement of what I may find, anticipating nervous trips, hidden nose-pickers, accidental waves, etc. I was disappointed to find nothing of the sort.
What I did find was OU has an obvious confidence problem and unlike myself, is TOO aware that they are insight of hundreds of their peers.
I could honestly estimate that about 15 (ish) percent of those in the Oval today were plugged in to an iPod, a phone, and sometimes BOTH! I couldn't even begin to understand what I was seeing! You want to connect with other people? This is your chance, you are surrounded by hundreds of people and you choose to ignore all of them to talk to someone you can't even see.
Those who weren't sucked into the sea of iPhones, were looking at their feet, nervously twitching and tugging at their belongings, rushing towards their destination without hoping to look preoccupied.
The optimist eye inside of me hoped that perhaps all the people I saw were just freshmen scared to be in a new place, but I stood corrected when I saw a line up of professors crossing my path. There they were, veterans of this place, scurrying to avoid their students and colleagues. Most pretending to run their lectures through in their head as they walk or look for their next building. But, let's be honest profs! You have been here for years, you know where your building is and you have said this lecture enough times you could repeat it in your sleep. I expected more from you!
What is with the obvious avoidance of eye contact? What are all of you so scared of? That someone may say hi, or smile? What is the worst that can happen by being noticeably happy? Someone will think you are weird because they are to wimpy to feel anything themselves?
To all of this I say: GROW A PAIR OKLAHOMA! Be a human being! Take some time to be the unapologetic version of you!
If you are upset...fine plug in, avoid the world... as I'm sure that will make you feel so much better. However, remember your attitude is infectious.
From this observation I have decided that my mission for this week (or for life) is to travel my destination with hopes of making a new friend. Even from afar, to move with a smile on my face and my shoulders back.
With that being said, I must give a few Shout-Outs!
-To the guy in the camo shorts and black T-Shirt: While, you were plugged in, I noticed you! You looked ready to say hello at any moment, you made eye contact with each person you passed and had an easy smile across your face. I'm sorry that those people you looked at were to scared to notice you, but I did and I appreciate you!
-To the girl texting while riding your bike and giggling at the same time... that just takes skill.
-To my friends: I saw several of you and you didn't even notice me because I wasn't directly in-front of your face! Take a look around every once and awhile!