For years (I confess) I have noticed and fretted about who waves back and who does not.
I almost always wave. I wave at all kinds of riders. I feel that our cycling creates a certain kinship. I wave. Most riders evidently sense no such kinship; they seldom wave.
Stupidly, I note their non-waves and keep loose track of who responds and who doesn't. Decades, I been doing that. No kidding.
Just the last couple of rides, I've changed my program. I still wave, because it feels right to me. But I've stopped monitoring responses. Here's what I do.
I ride along. I see a cyclist approaching. I watch until I'm confident that he or she is not a threat. Then I take my eyes off that cyclist and wave.
I wave because it feels right. He or she waves back or doesn't wave back, whichever feels right. Wave or not wave, I don't see it.
We all do what we feel is right. I don't wave for effect, for a response, after all. I wave because I'm old school and always have waved. They don't 'cause they aren't and haven't.
I'm happy with my new program. If you're a frustrated, old school waver, try it on your next ride. Look away. You'll lighten your heart before your legs warm up.