We're talking but not going anywhere.

Posted by Kyle Jacobson , Monday, November 29, 2010 6:46 PM

There is a conversational void, not created by me I swear, between an encounter with someone you have never met and an encounter with someone in which you are close friends. When meeting someone for the first time there is a wide array of "getting to know you" questions to fall back on when they are unreceptive to wider topics. Once the questions are depleted it may be the perfect opportunity to make, if possible, an exit. The void comes into play once you meet that person for the second time; the GTKY questions are not an option and the level of friendship is not up to Janice-bought-another-cat-what-is-up-with-that-woman type conversation. Where do you turn?
        I have a solution for this problem. We need to open up. We need to be more friendly and discuss real world topics that benefit both parties involved. When making small talk I can't help but feel that the entire conversation is pointless. I just met a new person and I remember nothing from the entire conversation; my brain has begun to ignore useless information. For example: I found out where he was from. What good does that do without a substantial follow-up question, e.g. how do you think growing up in a rural neighborhood has given you an advantage in your education? This, I believe, is a true conversation that could benefit both parties, i.e. insight. Every person has a vault of information and insight inside of them that cannot and will not be opened without insightful and purposeful questions.
          Let's really get to know someone and let's use our time with human interaction more wisely.

                                      Convivially,
                                                            Kyle

2 Response to "We're talking but not going anywhere."

daders Says:

Hey man, found your blog through reddit. Some pretty thought provoking stuff. I myself am a tiny bit of an agoraphobic (not seriously enough to prevent me from going out but just enough to make all excursions awkward and anxiety-ridden. And I completely avoid clubs and bars too.)

I completely agree with you that most social encounters are pointless and robotic, but I'm beginning to understand that they are necessary interactions in the grand scheme of things. I generally like to talk about current events (not stupid MTV bullshit) and meaningful discussions that relate to these current events. I'll bring something up almost right away (I am lucky in that my mind rarely blanks during conversation and is firing on all cylinders 24/7) that pertains to my real interests. I don't bother pretending to care about things (unless it's a hot chick haha), I just cut to the chase after the pleasantries. This way you can figure out who's worth your time in the shortest amount of time possible.

Keep in mind that I have trouble going up to people and starting conversations, and I only really excel when I am somehow included in a group that's already talking.

Anyway, I'm going to continue reading through your blog and I might make some more comments. You have an awesome writing style (I like to think that I do too but this is all drunk and hurried) and I can really relate to a lot that you're saying, though you seem smarter and less like a boring normal person.

bob Says:

I agree with your counsel that we shouldn't be evasive with one another but rather need to go beyond banal questions like "So what's your favorite [insert sitcom] episode?" It's a tough barrier to get past, though, with alot of trial-and-error. I don't know if it's limited to the part of Ohio I live in but more than once people I've had people become stunned to the point of annoyance if I put a question to them that even bordered on the cerebral. People get aggravated when you stimulate them to think, which in a way makes it even more important to do so! Maybe I'm on the wrong wavelength here but that's what your post prompted from me. I certainly liked where you were coming from, anyway.

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