Far Bar, 10:15 PM
The fellow sitting to my left has been there for a while (15 minutes? 30 minutes?), has been drinking his beer veeeerry slowly, and has been on his phone the whole time.
I'm done with my beers and my dinner and I'm ready to leave. Before leaving I sit back down in my seat and turn to him.
"Excuse me. Do you have a moment to do something unusual with me? Will you make eye contact with me for 60 seconds?"
"I'll tell you afterwards."
I explain the timer and ask if he's ready. When he is, I set the timer on the bar and start it. This way I'm not holding it in my hands and thinking about it during our session.
Our eye contact is easy and pleasant.
I give him a card. We talk. His name is Jeffrey. I share the answer to his "why?" I tell him that I'm interested to see how people respond to this experiment now that I'm in Los Angeles. I expect that they will be more suspicious, less willing participants. Turns Jeffrey is from NYC, not from LA, and is only here for a few days. He thinks that people in NYC may be surprisingly willing participants because people in NYC encounter odd (unusual) behavior all the time, and perhaps LA will be similar to NYC in that way. I am not sure. I guess we will find out!
After a pleasant chat I get Jeffrey's permission to use his name and photo for the blog.
After a pleasant conversation I leave the bar. We both have a smile on our face.