The knee-high robot rolled up. It stopped beside me and said, “Hi, I noticed you’ve been standing in front of the laundry detergent for quite a while. Is there anything I can help you with?”

“I found what I need. I’m just standing still for a minute. I don’t need anything.”

“Okay. If you change your mind, I’m always here to help. Have a nice day.” The robot rotated and rolled away. It made little musical sounds as it moved so people would see it coming and not trip over it.

Now I felt silly standing still. Shamed by a machine, I moved toward the automop section.

Please use the open space below to share your first 50 words on the topic “hi.”


Author: Virginia DeBolt

Writer and teacher who writes blogs about web education, writing practice, and pop culture.

7 thoughts on “Hi”

  1. “Hi,” the guy in the Iron Maiden t-shirt said, “I’m Gregg and I’m an alcoholic.”

    “Hi, Gregg,” the room said in unison.

    “This is my first meeting & I’m only here because the court ordered me to come…I put my hands on my wife while I was drunk & the people in the next apartment called the cops. And my two small kids saw mommy crying while daddy was taken out in handcuffs…I also punched one of the cops before they got the cops on me…my wife’s probably never going to take me back, I wouldn’t take me back. I’m living out of a motel room, I lost my job because when they found out I got arrested…”

    All around the room, people were nodding. We understood what Gregg was saying. He was describing hitting bottom, something each of us had done.

  2. Softly in her humming, God tapped her shoulder.
    A dreamy and furiously celestial ‘Hi.’
    Speechless with delight a simple nod of affability and reception of a lover.
    His presence all around, the heavenly abode. She recognized and knows who she is in Him.
    In Him she is sheltered and assured.

  3. “Hi.” he said. I looked up. “Hi.” We sat together in silence, and watched the clouds roll against the sky, and the sunset ripe, and the moon come out. When the stars shone bright against the dark blue velvet, we laid back on the grass and watched them shiver. And we stay there sentry, barely touching, until it was time to say goodbye.

  4. Hi ‘vrybody! This is the usual greeting of Sophie Kaczinsky, one of the charismatic characters in the CBS show 2 Broke Girls. Every time she enters the diner where the girls work, this is what she blurts out. To the listener, it sounds like it’s all one word and , of course, the audience goes wild. The show is funny and, at times, full of well written double entendres with Sophie stealing many of the funnier scenes.

  5. It’s all in the nuance. “Hi” is a very short word and it’s message is pretty literal – announcement of one’s presence. The intent of presence is revealed though in how the word is spoken. Hesitancy could signal the speaker to be bearer of bad news. The hearer may sense sarcasm, delight or surprise, anger, superiority or its opposite. Amazing, isn’t it the range of emotions a two-letter word is able to convey? So for now, it’s
    “Hi and Good bye.”

  6. “Hi!”
    Her greeting was cheerfully breathless, and full of the happiness contagion.
    Cheerful because that is what she was , a ray of sunshine .Breathless , from having to climb two flight of stairs to reach us.
    The room lit up immediately.
    “Good morning Ma’am .” 36 of us intoned back, in sing-song.
    “So?” Would be her next question as she rubbed her hands, having plonked her registers on the table , and looking at all of us .She might have as well asked “Whats up buddy?”

  7. When I was a teenager I had a great little job babysitting for a neighbor’s three young boys. It was a big responsibility but a lot of fun too. Believe me those fellas kept me hopping. I really admired their mother who was not only pretty but always so calm and understanding. Over time I got to meet her sisters and parents. I loved the family and being with them. One day her nephew came over to visit. He’d been in the Air Force and was home on leave. “Hi, so you’re the girl who babysits for my aunt.” I looked up into the most gorgeous blue eyes and handsome face I’d ever seen. “Hi!” Dead quiet ensued. I was at a loss for words. My mouth was probably gaping as I think back on that meeting. My heart was fluttering like a bird’s wings. That was the best hi I’d ever experienced (no pun intended). We dated briefly but it just wasn’t going to work for me. His poor tortured soul wouldn’t allow him to stop feeling inferior. So inferior that he always was super critical to those around him. I wasn’t spared. It was his way. Sad story because I ran into him many years later. This time the “hi” was very different. I could see that his painful neuroses had taken a toll on his face. He’d already been married three times. How sad that he could never learn and grow out of that feeling of inferiority he had. I don’t think he ever felt anyone could really love him.

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