….with the third meaning:
He was tired of ordinary people’s pedantic ways: the cashier’s meaningless “How are you today?” as she scanned his head of lettuce. Mothers on the city sidewalks who blew bubble gum while breastfeeding on park benches. His own doorman of ten years with the practiced smile.
But once back in the gilded elevator up to his penthouse apartment with its sweeping view of Central Park, he might catch a distorted glance of himself in the gold-toned reflective walls. He’d have to look away. He’d look down at his shoes, as he would standing on a street corner waiting for the light to change, when he mistakenly might make eye contact with a stranger.