SJS, I think we are in agreement then. The specifics of what we feel are appropriate may differ, but our interests are the same.
wow! i just chanced upon this one and sorry to go back a little, but just for the record, in the 6 towns (5 towns + Farrock ;)) most men won’t go out of their way to say GS to a women. If they happen to be walking on the same side of the street, and pass each other, they they probably will nod and maybe murmur a GS.
And i %100 agree with ames’s theory of out of towners feeling closer to each other…
Why did what do you love about the 5 towns turn into another judgmental discussion? Yes we say GM and GS to one another because we are a community we are not just bodies living near each other. We are human beings, we are Jews and we acknowledge that especially on Shabbos! We are happy to meet another Jew on Shabbos and are happy to be able to greet another Jew and so we do and we teach our children to do so. When you pass families even the youngest of children will offer a GS and it is a wonderful feeling. There is nothing wrong with it, there is nothing personal about it and there is nothing sexual about it. It means nothing more than ahavas yisroel and the joy of being able to greet another jew male or female, young or old, handsome or ugly, tall or short, fat or skinny, MO or Chasidish. Maybe the joy comes from being raised by holocaust survivors that instilled in us the love of every Jew. Can you imagine what it feels like to a very modern, even off-the-derech young teen that gets a GS from a very frum person instead of being ignored? Maybe that is what will lift their spirits that day. And maybe every GS that anyone receives on any given Shabbos adds to their on personal Simchas Shabbos. If you want to know your place, your place is being the best Jew you could be and not a hauty judgmental one!