Hey kx59, how are we doin today?
hey, how's it going?
How ya doin?
Every now and then I'll respond with a canned, "ok", "just fine", "Ok, you doin' alright?"
My favorite thing to do though, is give a response just outside the envelope of polite platitudes.
" well, I'm still on the right side of the grass"*
"I'm still standing"
"I've been better"
Sometimes it's just the facts.
"man, I'm really dragging ass today"
"I'm sick as a dog"
My responses usually take people back just a bit, and then a nervous laugh. Break the thin barrier of polite platitudes and they don't know how to respond. If it's someone other than a random passerby, I smile and launch into conversation, rescuing them from their societal confusion.
It's never fails to intrigue me how little it takes to snap people out of their sleepwalk through life, nor how quickly and deeply they fall back into their ambulatory slumber.
* at the age of 19, I was told by someone I admire and respect that I had the attitude of a 90 year old.
I considered that a compliment. I should live so long.