This has been illustrated multiple times over just the past week.
Because I am required to practice the piano 2 hours a day for my major, and I work, and I have a full class schedule, I usually don't end up getting back to my apartment 'til about 7:30 every night. And, since we have reached fall/winter time, this means I'm walking home in the dark. I usually put in my iPod and walk home in my own little world, not particularly paying attention to anything or anyone.
Well, one evening, I was doing just that. As I was passing Aggie Ice Cream, someone seemed to pop out of nowhere. I was tapped on the shoulder, and I was so completely caught off guard, I'm sure I gave this person a look of complete disgust, shock, and don't- you-dare-mess-with-me without even realizing what I was doing. All my defense mechanisms were up and I was prepared to beat up the menacing man that I was sure was here to mug me.
As I whipped around, however, I saw a sweet, innocent, smiling girl. Immediately after she saw the look on my face, her whole countenance changed. Her eyes got huge, she cowered, and stuttered.. "Oh.. I'm, s-s-sorry! I j-j-just wondered if-f-f you were in th-that class just barely."
I didn't know what to say, or how to convey that I had imagined a frightening male, so I told her I wasn't in the class and apologized and explained that I was just startled. She quickly scurried ahead of me and that was that.
Now this may seem like a pretty normal thing to be startled about.
But stuff like this happens to me all the time.
For the most part, it's not anyone intentionally trying to scare me, but my angry, back-off face is just a reflex.
So, to the girl by Aggie Ice Cream - I'm really, really sorry!
And, to those of you who intentionally try to scare me... You will most likely succeed. But, be warned, it's very possible you could be slapped, too.