# (MAPLE XV) How are you?

It’s the quintessential question upon greeting someone, whether familiar or unfamiliar: some variant of “How are you?”  It seems that most people’s default answers are “Good,” “OK,” or “great.”  That oftentimes doesn’t really mean much in truth, I have found, as it usually seems to indicate the status quo, regardless of whether a person’s normal day they consider to be good, bad, or neutral.  Of course, every observation can lead to a question!  Hmm… that’s a very interesting thing I could ask one of these days!

Other people have different sorts of default responses.  For example:

During my last few years of high school, when I really noticed my positivity shining through, any sort of “How are you?” greeting I responded to with “Doing great, like always!”  Then again, I am one of those who is easy to appease and please–it takes something very significant to anger or provoke me.  So, there is actually some merit to that when I said it, especially in high school when things were pretty simple for me–there’s something good about dancing to your own drummer.

Phillip, my roommate from my first two years at UNL, oftentimes answered the question “How are you?” with the response “Better than I deserve.”  It fits with his personality, because it seems to be a response that a devout Christian might say, or someone who has “avoidance of sin” as a high priority.  Definitely, even if it is his default message, it is definitely a conversation starter.

And going back to me, I have noticed that my default mood message has changed from “Doing great like always” to “Not too bad!”  Is there some implication that college and high school have broken down my positivity?  Honestly, I don’t think so!  Life is harder than it was in high school since I am now pretty much independent, have challenges in academics, and am always learning about the world.  That makes days even better than in high school, even if it presents more challenges!

Then again, I am not good at recognizing when subtle uses of tone will indicate that they are not doing excellently, so there may be many times that people have answered my “How are you” question with a variant of “doing well” but had the tone to imply “something’s not right.”  As mentioned in the “Phillip” paragraph, sometimes an unexpected answer to “How are you?” can be a conversation starter.  But, it seems that even when people have something on their mind, they tend to resort to their normal responses.  Something I am going to try–being honest when answering the question.  You never know what it will lead to!

(This was a shorter post, but I suppose that I’m not doing a wordwork, so that I don’t need $500 \pm 50$ words, and since I enjoy doing MAPLE, the 10 allowed words for complaining about the assignment are never going to appear.)

Today’s counts, nugget, and Score:

Today is the Ides of MAPLE (the 15th day).  YAY–almost halfway there!

היום שמונה ושלושים יום, שהם חמישה שבעות ושלושה ימים לעמר

Appreciate the quirks within yourself and in others.

Yesterday’s Score was 12-23.  (This week, each day will obtain a certain Score.  The Score will be the subject of a blog post next week.  STAY TUNED for what it means!)

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