Dan Kang

Leaping out of my comfort zone

I like people. I like being around people, talking with people, just interacting with people. Because I’m thrusting myself into a completely new surrounding with a ridiculously diverse population, I figured it would only make sense to meet as many people as I can. In my experience, meeting new people has only opened up new opportunities and accelerated my personal growth. Every new person has something to offer because their experiences are always valuable. Always.

In that vein, I’m going to start out by setting a goal of meeting (at least) one new person every day. Meeting doesn’t necessarily mean becoming friends or exchanging numbers; it means having enough interactions that if I were to see them again, I’ll have a good chance of recognizing them rather than passing by yet another unknown face.

Every day, I’ll be keeping track of the people that I meet and what they’re like. Starting with today.

Fabian

Fabian was a chill dude working at the office for one of the two places that I checked out today. In case you don’t know, I’m currently looking for housing in San Francisco. It’s hard. All opportunities are welcome. Anyway, Fabian was polite, and showed me around the property. I wish I had engaged with him a little bit more to find out what kind of person he is.

Will

After Fabian’s tour, I started walking toward the second property and came across this mattress place called Sleep Center. It was hot outside, and I walked into the store to cool off a bit and bathe in the AC air. I browsed around, thought about how much of a baller I would need to be before feeling comfortable purchasing a $3000+ mattress, and started walking toward the exit.

“Hey, how is everything?” I was trapped. But the employee looked pretty friendly, so I decided to at least entertain him. It was the least I could do for stealing their fresh, cool air. Will turned out to be true to his appearance, and was actually a nice guy. Well, I had a hard time telling whether he was actually nice or was just doing his job really well, but I decided to give him the benefit of the doubt and pretend like he wasn’t trying to sell me a mattress.

After trying out four different mattresses, I was pretty much ready to go. In that time though, I found out that Will grew up in SoCal (the town he named was unfamiliar to me – I really need to just stare at Google Maps and learn about the places around me) and went to Berkeley. When I introduced myself as DK, he asked me if I played Super Smash Bros. This is probably the only reason why I stuck around long enough to try four different mattresses. Because Will is that cool of a guy. He talked about how he uses Donkey Kong against noobs because it’s fun to crush them (apparently Eric from Twilio isn’t the only bastard who does this), and how he plays with Pikachu when he’s serious. Like I said, Will was a pretty cool guy.

Jill

Jill is the current resident of the other room I was checking out, and she seemed really nice, too. It was sometimes hard to understand her due to her slight accent and her cold, but we managed. It was chill.

Man with baby

After purchasing my Subway veggie delight sandwich (no meat (obviously), all veggies except for jalapenos, sweet onion sauce), I dragged my sweaty body up one of San Fran’s infamous hills. No matter where I go in SF, I’m always walking uphill. Yes, really. As I was regretting my existence in the burning heat, a man with a baby in a stroller appeared next to me. I was pretty cranky and in no mood to talk, but decided to talk to him anyway.

“Hey, how’s it going?” “Good, how about you?” “This hill is steep.”

He laughed. He went on to share how he’s been in SF for four years but in that neighborhood for only two, and how he absolutely loves the neighborhood. So close to Polk and Fillmore. One day, when I stare at Google Maps enough, I will understand why it’s so good to be close to Polk and Fillmore.