Why is the word “Hi” is important to me


Nathan Hsiao, GW, Editor in Chief

I have an inexplicable urge to say “Hi!” to everyone.

Through slender hallways, my glance gazed into the crowd- the hefty detention monitor chuckling with laughter, buff football players, lost freshmen searching through a maze. Some I didn’t recognize, yet all were waiting to say “Hi!”

The slight corners around my mouth compel me to start each gloomy Monday with a healthy “Good Morning!” or a sunny “hello!” Fist pumping my dear friends, I know I have fulfilled a small ambition- a game to greet those around me. As I walk away from my principal’s warm nods and my teacher’s excited “Hi there!”, I cannot help smiling, cannot help erasing the dark and lifeless circles under my eyes .

However, it almost pains me to awkwardly avert my eyes away and to miss the opportunity to  ecastically wave at someone. The impulse has created an imperative to beat myself at my own game. Through my friendly greetings in the school lunch line, I befriended an Indian foreign exchange student- someone who, though struggling in English shared the same compassion to greet a total stranger. With the myriad  “Hey Nathan!” and the awesome “Nathan! High five!”, I found new lunch tables to visit- with people ranging from avid Latin students to band enthusiasts- all willing to return my little gestures of kindness. Searching for more people to courteously nod with a “Hey” and to ecstatically wave , I have developed an odd yet intimate connection with unfamiliar people passing by me. Lethargic lunch monitors. School librarians. Gym teachers.

I created a personal community- all perpetuated by my greetings and high fives. I didn’t have to be aesthetically handsome or brilliant like Einstein. I just needed to lift those corners around my mouth and a group of people responded to my inexplicable urge. 

Everyone belongs in my community. All it begins with is a simple “Hi!”