Chit chat with people on the street.

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ross Williams, Mar 29, 2002.

  1. Ross Williams

    Ross Williams Supporting Actor

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    This comes up because I was just in the elevator with somebody who insisted on talking with me. About all I could manage was to smile and nod at their completely meaningless babble. Afterwards I felt so fake for even smiling at what they were saying. But if I hadn't had some sort of reaction I would have been really rude.

    In general I try to avoid any conversation with people I don't know or am not dealing with in some other capacity. I'd much rather be left alone with my thoughts than talk to somebody in line at the grocery store, on the elevator or the street corner. I figure why bother talking to somebody I'll probably never see again in my life.

    Am I a jerk for not wanting to conversate with my fellow humans? What do you guys do in these situations?

    If you're one of these people that talk to unkown people, I don't mean to offend you. I'm not angry at these types, nor do I think they're doing something wrong. I'm just wondering what they get out of it.
     
  2. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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  3. Jeffrey_Jones

    Jeffrey_Jones Second Unit

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    Ross,
    I don't think you're a jerk...just anti-social [​IMG] I just noticed that you live in Seattle, so do I. For a city that most people consider fairly friendly, people here do seem to keep to themselves.
    While I don't often engage strangers in short, useless chit-chat conversations, I will smile and say hello. I find it breaks the otherwise awkward silence...especially in elevators. I have always had a rule about no talking in elevators but a simple good morning or hello is the exception for me.
    When I use to smoke I would talk to other smokers but I think that most smokers do this. Smoking was always a great way to meet strangers, too bad about that whole lung cancer thing.
    - Jeff
     
  4. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    I appreciate your dis-interest in speaking to random people. I'm the same way. Still, I've worked to become better at chit-chat with strangers. In the process, I've met some interesting people, learned some new things, and had some surprisingly good conversations.

    It's not always that interesting, but the highlights make it worth the effort to me.
     
  5. Pamela

    Pamela Supporting Actor

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    I am not into small talk at all. I'm very bad at it and it makes me uncomfortable. I, too, would prefer to be left alone. I try and wear my invisible "leave me alone" small talk armor whenever I'm out and about. Especially when I'm flying. There's nothing worse than being stuck next to someone with verbal diarrhea for five hours.
     
  6. Paul Richardson

    Paul Richardson Second Unit

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    This is why I hate haircuts...the hairdresser always wants to have a conversation with me. If somebody opened up a "No Chit-Chat" hair salon, I would pay top dollar to get my hair cut there.

    I have no interest in hearing some stranger's opinions on the weather. If that makes me an anti-social jerk, so be it.
     
  7. Dave Poehlman

    Dave Poehlman Producer

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    I don't talk to people because I know they are all out to get me.

    Seriously, I guess I don't see the purpose of striking up a 30 second conversation in an elevator with someone who I will probably never see again in my life.... Now, if the elevator gets stuck... then we can talk.
     
  8. Bill Balcziak

    Bill Balcziak Supporting Actor

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    What a friendly bunch. [​IMG]
     
  9. DarrinH

    DarrinH Second Unit

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  10. Thi Them

    Thi Them Producer

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    How about the dentist trying to chit chat with you when he/she is working inside your mouth? Is it some kind of joke they learn in dental school?

    ~T
     
  11. Dan B

    Dan B Screenwriter

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    I guess I am one of the offenders who tends to talk to strangers. I live in a small town, though, so maybe that's different.
    I do agree that it is annoying, however, in a situation where you can't get away such as the dentist [​IMG] or an airplane.
    -Dan B
     
  12. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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  13. Dheiner

    Dheiner Gazoo

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    Jesus, How do you folks meet people???
     
  14. Jon_Are

    Jon_Are Cinematographer

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  15. Dave Poehlman

    Dave Poehlman Producer

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    Perhaps what irritates me most is the initial talk-about-the-weather ice breaker. "Sure is hot today" or "cold enough for ya?"

    Douglas Adams put it best when he said that humans have the inane ability to state the obvious.

    Now, if someone stepped onto an elevator and spewed out some trivia, I might be interested. ie: "rats can't vomit".

    I'd like to start a grass roots campaign for people to stop stating the obvious just for the purpose of making conversation. Next time you step onto an elevator or are sitting next to someone on an airplane. Throw out an obscure nugget of your knowlege.
     
  16. Ross Williams

    Ross Williams Supporting Actor

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  17. DennisHP

    DennisHP Second Unit

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    People are too nice to strangers. We feel bad and feel as if we're being rude if we don't engage them in their trivial conversation. We don't "owe" them a conversation. I feel it's perfectly legal, within my rights and totally acceptable to me if I don't respond or act deaf. HOWEVER, if it's a nice looking female, I'll listen to anything she has to say and nod my head accordingly even at the most rediculous statements. [​IMG]
     
  18. Julie K

    Julie K Screenwriter

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    No, it's not rude to wish to avoid idle chit-chat. But as for annoying, nothing beats random people you don't know who feel they must comment on something you're doing/buying. (I had a rant about this is a previous thread.)

    I like the idea of responding with a meaningful/important little bit of trivia.

    "Did you know that the facial mites living in your facial pores have no detectable anus?"

    "Male blackbuck antelope construct large piles of dung and then lie on them in order to attract females."

    "Some snakes will chase humans if they (the snakes) are observed while having sex."

    This could be fun.
     
  19. Dave Poehlman

    Dave Poehlman Producer

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    There ya go, Julie!

    By using statements like these, it will at least be a memorable conversation... and you might even learn something!
     
  20. MikeAlletto

    MikeAlletto Cinematographer

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