Almost each day someone asks me, “Hi. How are you doing?”
That someone could be a coworker, cashier, bus driver, neighbor, or another person that randomly ends up in my path.
Inevitably, I respond, “Fine. How are you?”
Then that person answers in one to two words. The reply might not be a full sentence. Bonus points if it is.
These daily exchanges between others and me can be so brief that there is little room for follow-up questions. There is no way for others and I to verify each other’s answers. Are we really fine? What makes us fine?