When I was a first-year medical student, my classmates and I used to go down to the hospital cafeteria between lectures to buy snacks. The women from whom we bought them at the check-out counters were all young and sullen, rarely even glancing up at their customers as they rang up purchases. Their customers, in turn, seemed equally uninterested in them. So I decided one day I was going to get them to smile each time they rang up my purchases. To do this, I decided I'd simply start smiling at them myself.
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