It was the evening and I was wearing my Santa hat; I stopped by the grocery store to grab a bottle of Omega-3 (seriously, take that shit if you aren’t already) and grabbed a poinsettia on an impulse buy. I was going to approach a woman in the cheese aisle, but she turned her back to me whilst examine a wondrous collection of bries and I was logistically blocked from opening.
I was browsing the drugs and saw a thin middle-aged brunette woman in the next aisle where the pet food was. As I approached I saw no ring on the left ring finger, she was turned to face me and I opened by gesturing with the plant.
“Hey, do you think this goes with my hat?”
“Hmm, I dunno, I think you need more glitter on your hat to match the shiny paper.”
(noticing her red scarf) “You know it looks like you match it too.”
“And my socks!” (She points to her feet…she’s increasing investment in the conversation)
“Look at us, we’re just like the stores, starting Christmas before December even…”
(with nonreaction) “You’re not coming from a Christmas party are you?”
“No, not quite yet…”
We were in the pet aisle, which provided a perfect segue into another ramble point:
“…you know I’ve heard stories of dogs eating poinsettia leaves and getting sick.”
(with a smile and a laugh) “Oh, I don’t think I’d feed that to my dog.” (Excellent news, not a cat lady)
“Dogs are such sweet animals, they are so curious, they’ll put anything they can find into their mouths.” (another laugh from her)
I could have continued on with the ramble, perhaps noting that because dogs can’t talk, it’s pretty transparent when they are trying to dominate you, or alternately manipulate you, unlike people who can access and fool our rational centers. Or discussed the comfort of the Christmas holiday with a dog warming your feet, or of the dog begging at Thanksgiving dinner. The most obvious personal question she might have asked is whether I had a dog; dropping personal questions is a big sign of escalation in the day-game conversation.
Alas I was tired and my verbal circuits weren’t firing quickly; I fiddled with some rawhide products to avoid the impression I was ejecting and then skedaddled down to the register.
1. She found my opener at least mildly humorous and stayed to hear what I had to say
2. She drew attention to herself telling me to look at her socks
3. She laughed more than once, and wasn’t in any hurry to leave the aisle once I had her in conversation
A successful approach, for as far as I took it.