JL's Columbia SC Real Estate Blog: I am not Socially Awkward.....At Least not in General

I am not Socially Awkward.....At Least not in General

 I would have to say that in general, when it comes to social situations, I am not a typically socially awkward person. I tend not to over react to outside stimulus and even though most of the time I would rather just be left alone, I am not at all uncomfortable in public or around a lot of people. I really don't even mind public speaking, but I really don't have to do such a thing all that often.

 For the most part, I seem to run through the paces of dealing with people pretty seamlessly. However, lately I have noticed a particular form of missed communication, or mistaken identity if you will, that has been happening to me with increasing regularity. It's one of those things that just strikes when I least expect it and I just never see it coming. Though this problem has begun to land in my lap time and time again and frankly I'm starting to feel a little strange about it.

 Have you ever had that moment where you look up in a crowded room and there is someone looking right at you waving. A big, friendly smile on their face that seems so inviting and just begs for your recognition and attention. You don't really seem to know the person and you remember a lot of parties here lately, so you can't really rule out that you might have spoken with this person at some point. You don't want to seem like a real jerk by not even acknowledging them, after all they seem so happy to see you. In that split second you try your best to figure out how and why this person is waving frantically and walking in your direction while looking right at you, but for the life of you nothing comes to mind. So, you simply give a little wave back and smile as you realize that someone else just over your shoulder entered the picture with that same happy look and frantic wave.

 And all at once you say to yourself "jackass, not again!", but it's far too late, because your cursed hand is already in the air betraying you once more. You pull your hand back down as fast as you can and you are satisfied that no one has paid the least bit of attention, but you can already see the now strange look on the face of the original frantic waver. That strange look that's a dead give away you didn't pull that hand back fast enough and they are now very confused as to what your problem is and why you're waving too. Thankfully, the awkward stare never lasts long as they unite with their real friend and scurry away from you before you run over for a group hug to complete the task of proving what a freak you really are and lend credence to their suspicions.

  Yes, this has been happening to me pretty frequently here lately and I am starting to wonder if the stars are aligned against me. Am I not living right? I have become completely gun shy about waving now, even to people that I actually know. When my wife waves to me in our home, I suddenly start to look all around me as if she may just be happy to see the dog or something. I have seriously developed a complex, and unfortunately I see no end in sight for this madness which has consumed my life at the moment. So consider this a public service announcement, no matter how preoccupied you happen to be at any given moment, always look around carefully before waving to strangers. The pride you save may be your very own.


JL Boney, III - Columbia, SC Realtor - Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate

 I specialize in Columbia, SC real estate and the surrounding areas, including Blythewood, SC, Kershaw County, Fairfield County, and Lexington, SC. If you are in the market to buy or sell a home in Columbia, SC or any of the surrounding areas, I would love the opportunity to speak with to see how I can help. Thanks for reading and feel free to contact me if I can be of service to you.

Office- 803-788-1450     Cell- 803-730-9601     Email- James_Boney@Yahoo.com

My Columbia SC Real Estate Website

My Columbia, SC Real Estate Blog



Subscribe to JL Boney's Columbia SC Real Estate Blog by Email


Comment balloon 33 commentsJL Boney, III • March 11 2009 10:29PM


You know, JL, you don't have to know someone to wave and I think that you're feeling uncomfortable is just your feeling--others  are just thinking that you're being friendly and don't think a thing about it!  If they come towards you to speak to the other person, extend your hand and introduce yourself.  You just may make a new friend!

Debe in Charlotte
Posted by Debe Maxwell, CRS, The right Charlotte REALTOR! (www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310) over 11 years ago

LMAO - While I've had this happen, it is not a frequent event in my life.  The fact that it seems to be so in yours is definitely strange.  Honestly though, an awkward moment waving at someone you don't know is better than the embarassment of realizing you just ignored someone you do know.

Posted by Erik Hitzelberger, Louisville - Middletown Real Estate (RE/MAX Alliance - Louisville REALTOR-Luxury Homes) over 11 years ago

Debe- I may have to try that, I just fear that the day I decide to introduce myself will be a day when I have been to the dentist and they have used Novocain. Then without thinking about it, I will immediately step up with my slurred speech and further frighten the friendly stranger and get maced. I could be over thinking things.

Erik- If you knew some of the people I do, you may be tempted to ignore them in public as well.

Posted by JL Boney, III, Columbia, SC Real Estate (Coldwell Banker) over 11 years ago


Been there , done that. Both sides, that is... waiving to people I do not kow and not waving to people I do know.

Still alive

Posted by Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL, Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices (Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408) over 11 years ago

That's okay- just think about all the people you know now on ActiveRain, and most of us you will never have to wave to -

Posted by Lise Howe, Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC (Keller Williams Capital Properties) over 11 years ago

Jon- I too have been on both sides of the fence, good to hear I'm not alone.

Lise- I have thought of that, and now I have become afraid to travel. What if one of them recognizes me, or what if I am somewhere in another state and think that the waver is an AR member. It's all just too much.

Posted by JL Boney, III, Columbia, SC Real Estate (Coldwell Banker) over 11 years ago

oh -- I have been there - done that!  It did make me laugh.  At leasts we know we are human.  good luck!

Posted by Joan Whitebook, Consumer Focused Real Estate Services (BHG The Masiello Group) over 11 years ago

Joan- We are all human, and these things do happen.

Posted by JL Boney, III, Columbia, SC Real Estate (Coldwell Banker) over 11 years ago

I'm one of those ones that will see someone wave and just stare...with a weird look....and act like I they're blurry or something...squint and look right to the side of them so they don't think I'm actually doing it to them. lol.

Well, you can wave at me....I will wave back....just to humor you LOL!

Posted by Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman, (RA) AHWD CRS ePRO OAHU HAWAII REAL ESTATE (Liberty Homes) over 11 years ago

Hi JL-Your post made me smile as your were describing what you said to yourself. That is something I would say to myself. I remember faces but not necessarily names which can be awkward.  It also reminds me of the lady I work for. We'll be at lunch and somebody comes up to her that knows her and she greets them just likes she knows them and then afterwards she'll tell me she has no idea who that was. it always makes me laugh. I think that makes of all human. Welcome to the human race. Havre a great Thursday. :-)

Posted by Sharon Lee, Retired and loving life (Sharon Lee's Virtual Assistance) over 11 years ago

I think that as long as you're waving with all five fingers that it's OK.

Posted by Mandi Perkins (Pioneer Title Agency) over 11 years ago

ROFLMAO!  Been there, done that!  But I have a question for you, JL  >>>  why is it that we feel like a jackass when in fact all we were doing was returning what we perceived as a friendly gesture?!?!?   :)   But just for you, here ya go: 


Posted by Randy Hooker, Gilbert, Chandler, Mesa, Queen Creek (Dreamcatcher Realty / Greater Phoenix Area) over 11 years ago

Featured @ Club Chaos

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 11 years ago

JL I would say that has happened to everybody at one time or another...next time try making a new friend out of it you never know they may just change your life for the better...peace zane

Posted by Zane Coffin, (Geneva Ohio Real Estate Agent) (Century-21 Homestar) over 11 years ago

JL ~ LOL! I don't think you need to worry about your wife!  You need to do that "I'm not waving at YOU, I'm smoothing down my hair" move. 

Posted by Kathy Passarette, L.I. Staging/Decorating (Creative Home Expressions) over 11 years ago


I have had that happen, and it's the worst feeling in the world. In fairness though, I have perpetrated this awkward situation on others, and was quick to recognize it and try to make the victim feel better by saying: "I wasn't waving at you originally...but I'm glad that you're here."

Posted by Richard Weisser, Richard Weisser Retired Real Estate Professional (Richard Weisser Realty) over 11 years ago

Not being one who really cares what others think of me I would just wave harder and then go introduce myself. Try that one next time!

Posted by Chip Jefferson (Gibbs Realty and Auction Company) over 11 years ago

JL - you just need to learn to turn that wave into a strecth, and let out a big sigh of pleasure. Either that or let people know that you have Turret's syndrome but have learned to only do it in sign.

Posted by Mike Saunders (Lanier Partners) over 11 years ago

Are you hiding your true age from us and using a high school photo?

Posted by Don Rogers, Realtor, Broker, CDPE, GRI, OnullFallon MO & St Charles County MO homes (Keller Williams Realty Chesterfield) over 11 years ago

JL, I hear you, My question is why do people wave like fool's in a crowded room. Isn't like when you are at a stop light and all of sudden some idiot is honking there horn.

One automaticlly thinks your are sitting at a green light and you starting looking around just to find out that three cars down a lady is franticlly waving at somebody else.

Why do people do that? Especially in conventions, they look like fools.


                                                          ~ Life is Good

Posted by Roy A. Peterson, P.R.E.I. (Domicile Analysis of Texas) over 11 years ago

JL - I'm not socially awkward, just mentally awkward.

Posted by Jason Sardi, Your Agent for Life (Auto & Home & Life Insurance throughout North Carolina) over 11 years ago

Sally- I would appreciate the wave back, people have been humoring me for years.

Sharon- I have friends like that also, and it gives me a chuckle every time they talk to someone for 10 minutes and they're not even sure who the person is that walked up.

Mandi- I will keep that in mind as a practice of playing it safe.

Randy- Thank you sir. Me and that clown have a lot in common I assure you.

C- Thanks for the feature.

Posted by JL Boney, III, Columbia, SC Real Estate (Coldwell Banker) over 11 years ago

Zane- Next time I am making a scene.

Kathy- That's not a bad idea, I will begin practicing that immediately to see if I can pull it off.

Richard- When I realize it's happening to someone else, I always speak to them so they know I feel their pain.

Laura- I've never really cared what people think of me to be honest, but for whatever reason I have never really introduced myself in that situation. I'll have to start trying.

Mike- Now that's a good idea, and I'm sure I can pull that off.


Posted by JL Boney, III, Columbia, SC Real Estate (Coldwell Banker) over 11 years ago

Don- I don't think so, I'm 28 and will turn 29 very soon.

Roy- I try to avoid waving in crowded rooms, and I don't think I have ever even used the horn on my car.

Sardi- I can feel you on that one too.

Posted by JL Boney, III, Columbia, SC Real Estate (Coldwell Banker) over 11 years ago

Jl...I welcome any and all interaction with people.  Just being friendly and getting to know people is a trip in itself.  The underlying reason...business...you never know when that one great deal may be at your finger tips!

Posted by William Feela, Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No. (WHISPERING PINES REALTY) over 11 years ago

I was thinking that what you were describing was only reserved for those that are at least 40 or older.

Posted by Don Rogers, Realtor, Broker, CDPE, GRI, OnullFallon MO & St Charles County MO homes (Keller Williams Realty Chesterfield) over 11 years ago

JL-  You get mad when people don't wave and embarrassed when they do!!  Which is worse ;)

Posted by Jamie Boney (Mungo Homes) over 11 years ago

JL - I know what you mean, oh how embarrassing.  I think this happens in spurts, maybe your time is done now.

Posted by April Hayden-Munson, Brookfield Wisconsin Real Estate over 11 years ago

Bill- Most interaction with people is a good thing.

Don- No, no it strikes the younger generations as well.

Jamie- I want it all and I want it now.

April- We can only hope.

Posted by JL Boney, III, Columbia, SC Real Estate (Coldwell Banker) over 11 years ago

JL, this happens to me all of the time!!  Lol!  I have a very bad memory of people and I often forget their names and faces, so when I see someone waving, I always wave back, and then I turn and the real recipient of the wave is right behind me!  I usually just laugh it off but there is that awkward pulling down of the hand or the smoothing back of the hair, or something! lol!

Posted by Susan Mangigian, Chester & Delaware County Homes, Delaware and Ches (RE/MAX Preferred, West Chester, PA, RS152252A) over 11 years ago

Susan- I have to work on perfecting the technique of smoothing the hair back. I think that this is something that everyone has done this at least once and it really is awkward, but it's just one of those things.

Posted by JL Boney, III, Columbia, SC Real Estate (Coldwell Banker) over 11 years ago


Move here......we all wave at each other just to be friendly and everyone waves back......southern hospitality or your mother popped you in the mouth......

Posted by Julie Chapman, New Homes Sales Ormond, New Smyrna, Daytona Be (DR Horton ) over 11 years ago

Julie- The more my wife sees your pictures, the closer I get to moving your way I think. I like friendly people you know.

Posted by JL Boney, III, Columbia, SC Real Estate (Coldwell Banker) over 11 years ago