As you walk around today try asking yourself how you perceive strangers. Do you look upon them and just know they have value? Do you believe there is something cool about them, even though it may be hidden? Do you think, 'He might be rough around the edges but he could be my friend?' I hope so. This is a helpful mindset to have.
I don't know about you but when people tell me a situation should be avoided i want to check it out for myself. I once chatted with a Kurgan in a bar in Sydney after my friends warned me not to approach the guy. After a short period of growling it turned out he was a rower and a nice guy. So nice that he introduced me to his friends as 'my good friend Wayne.' This in turn, by a twist in fate, led to me meeting and dating a non-Kurgan cute girl, K-Swiss, I met that night. So, you just never know. Better to err on the side of believing people are potential friends. The greater tragedy in life is not to suffer at the hands of our fellow men but rather to miss the opportunities that other people can help us find.
Circumstances sometimes make people act snappy or unsociable. But try to remember, I think it was Aristotle who said, that all drama stems from misunderstanding and overreaction. At the core, most people mean well. If you come into an interaction with that belief and a forgiving attitude you will be more carefree and bring out the best in others and make friends.