Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Conversational Rape

How many times have you found yourself confronted by some mouth-breathing neanderthal whose eyes are filled with expectation, waiting for you to respond to some horribly useless and uninteresting thing? This mental midget managed to piece something together in his tiny bird brain and to force it through his lips with haste, not even taking the time to analyze whether or not it made sense, and now you have to come up with a reply.

I hate obligatory small talk, especially with strangers. As much as people like to call me narrow-minded, I think there is something to be said for trying to socialize mostly with those of similar mindsets that share a lot of the same interests. So often, I end up in situations where the person speaking to me could not possibly be of interest, even if they were on fire. So what is there to do? Remaining silent only indicates that either you are too stupid to participate in the discussion or that you are rude and impersonal. The other option is to play along, but why? Who could possibly enjoy such a worthless activity? If one party simply took a stand, then both would be free from this charade. Then again, the world is filled with a lot of really clueless people. Many of them probably think that those around them actually care to hear about whatever trivial nonsense that happens to cross their empty minds. There is something so fake about the whole thing. Even worse, to reply with a series of nods and "ah"/"I see"/"oh, really?" feels so transparently forced. This should, in theory, show effort while also making it clear that I have nothing to contribute and would like to escape. Of course, some people take this as their cue to just blather on, incessantly, for hours.

Today's lesson: If someone responds to your greeting with a mere nod and a grunt, chances are that they have nothing to say to you. Don't bother them by standing there, in awkward silence, making them uncomfortable with your empty gaze. Get a life, make some real friends and go irritate them.

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