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People watching

(64 Posts)
WOODMOUSE49 Mon 12-Aug-19 12:33:50

I've had a weekly, now fortnightly, hospital visit for nearly three months so I have had lunch in town after/before the appointments. I used to read my book whilst waiting for food but people watching is fascinating.

I nearly put this in the PET PEEVE thread but ...

Seeing a family or group of people having a meal in restaurant, cafe or pub. Some not engaged (and this appears to be mainly children) with the conversation. They are glued to their phones. Not talking but texting or game playing. Only time they put it down is to eat, if they need a knife AND fork. Quite often the phone is still being used whilst the other hand holds the fork. I think to myself, is this killing the art of face to face conversation or discussions or standing in front of others to give a presentation etc. What a pity the adults don't involve them in the conversation.

I know teachers plan in opportunities for children to discuss or stand up and talk but are children coping well with this.

Any way, the thread is really about watching others as well as what we notice about them. Does anyone else do it?

FarNorth Tue 13-Aug-19 17:49:51

I like watching the world go by, without making up any stories.
Maybe that means I'm even sadder for not bothering.

quizqueen Tue 13-Aug-19 19:19:31

I think if you stare too intently at strangers out in public these days, you are likely to get punched. I don't do people watching but I do talk to their dogs and look at the scenery; much nicer.

Justme67 Tue 13-Aug-19 19:29:01

I had no idea so many people enjoyed my simple pleasure, it has always been one of the things my other half allowed for when we were sitting having coffee, lunch, or anywhere, he always made sure that I was the one facing the activity. At one time I made up stories about families, find I have lost that art, but still interested in what goes on.

CanadianGran Tue 13-Aug-19 19:54:19

As for the lament about conversation, I do agree that chit chatting with strangers is becoming a lost art. Everyone these days on a bus or at the doctor's office is busy with their phones. Even the mums at the playground; they will not connect with others if they don't look up once in a while!

My DH is better at striking up conversation than I am, and we had some lovely conversations on vacation while sitting at cafes or on the beach.

WOODMOUSE49 Tue 13-Aug-19 20:41:54

I go with DH when he's working in Lynmouth, Devon. There is no mobile signal there, unless things have changed this year. last visit was mid 2018.

It's great walking around and sitting on the front. No mobiles out. People look at you when you pass. smile

Bijou Tue 13-Aug-19 22:45:10

When I go to town shopping I sit and eat my sandwich and watch the people coming to and from the bus station.
Not only are the majority overweight but even on a sunny warm day are wearing jeans and dull coloured t shirts. The sort of thing I would wear for gardening. I only saw two dresses and they were worn by elderly ladies.

MissAdventure Wed 14-Aug-19 01:13:55

I don't really look at that stuff.
I look at their faces, their wrinkles, the things that make them attractive, their body language.
I have absolutely no interest whatsoever in celebrities, ordinary people hold far more intrigue for me. smile

SueH49 Wed 14-Aug-19 02:32:15

^Grandma70s said
"When I people-watch I notice how many people are overweight, and wonder why personal pride or just vanity doesn’t prevent this". ^

If only it was that simple, that is a very judgemental comment and shows no empathy at all for people who in spite of their best efforts are unable to loose weight.

Almostemptynesty Wed 14-Aug-19 03:42:59

That was boastful and mean.

I am overweight bc I have a rare disease that makes me very tired. It was diagnosed too late to be cured.

I was always quite active and trim before I was ill. Now I eat very little but am unable to be as I once was. I exercise as I can.

My family is delighted that I am still here on this planet. So while I feel embarrassed at my body, I feel loved. It is what keeps me going; knowing that I am needed.

And neither vanity nor personal pride really get to enter into my appearance now as my main goal isn't looking up to your standards; it's staying alive to enjoy and give to my family. Somedays it's all I can do to do the bare minimum of life functions.

And OP. YES! Nothing so interesting as watching people if I am lucky enough to be out and about. I'll even sit in our car and wait for my dh bc I can people watch.

We loved going to restaurants bc it was time specifically for our family. No distractions. Just family. I hate to see children/parents on screens instead of sharing with family at meals. So much of screen time is just wasting time instead of building family.

Jacks1 Wed 14-Aug-19 12:27:55

I am totally on board with what u say. My family are my world too. Enjoy them and be yourself if anyone gets in the way of that then they are not needed by the likes of us.

Jacks1 Wed 14-Aug-19 12:33:07

I like this very much and will try to remember this official name as it sounds so much more intelligent

Tigertooth Sun 18-Aug-19 20:51:36

I hate being watched - it’s so rude. We do know you do it you know!
It makes me really insecure - what are they thinking about me etc. Please don’t do it - it’s so horrible.

Tigertooth Sun 18-Aug-19 21:32:28


Simple family rule: no phones at the table.

When I people-watch I notice how many people are overweight, and wonder why personal pride or just vanity doesn’t prevent this. Perhaps it’s become the norm

You sound like a really really lovely person.