Thursday, September 18, 2014

Weird things that happen at parties - part 2

Remember the last post?

Right, so this is the same party.

This time, I'm the cause of the weird thing.

Okay, I've spoken before about how the art of conversation is a lost cause and people don't know how to converse anymore.

Granted, I'm an extrovert so it is fairly easy for me to start conversations.

But there's a natural rhythm, right? You say something, the other person says something, and on and on.

Well, it turns out I don't know what to do when the ball of conversation doesn't bounce back.

So I start making conversation with the birthday girl's mom, initially because I really feel like since you invited me to your child's party and we've never even met, let alone spoken before, the least I can do is engage a bit with you, right?

And she just answers my question and that's it.

So I try again.

And again.

Flip - same thing.

But then it's almost like I can see myself from outside my body and no matter how much I tell myself to just SHUT UP, I can't. And I'm blabbering on and on.

OH LORD, it felt so awkward but I couldn't stop for a bit until thankfully, one of the kids did/ said something to break the stream of inane talk.

That's when I was really glad I have a big camera to hide behind. And I hid happily behind my camera for another 30 mins til we left.

This wasn't at a busy time of the party nor was she needed elsewhere. Believe me, I analysed all of that :)

D just LAUGHED (laughed!) when I told him my story and told me to relax.

He says they are all introverts ("we're writers. what do you expect?") and since they like their words on pages (or computers, as it were), they're not that skilled in the in-person scenario.

I said, "hogwash!"

Everybody needs to learn to hold up their end of a conversation.

Anyway, there is no point to this but really, it's a mental note to me to shut up when I see the conversation flagging and make a hasty exit!

So has this ever happened to you (on either end of the awkwardness)?
What did you do?


  1. Yuck I hate when that happens, I'm very shy but I will be friendly and converse with people if they approach me, she sounds more like a rude, vacant person than being an introvert......

  2. I talk and talk and talk when that happens. I will ramble on about the biggest load of rubbish EVER!

    On a related note, but also not really. I have blogged about this I think. Cameron plays soccer with a child. They have been in the same soccer team for 4 years now. I have sat next to the mom many many afternoons, I have interacted with her younger kids while she sits at practice. After about a year I bumped into her and asked her something about one of her boys - do you know what she said? "Sorry do I know you?". I thought, ok fair enough maybe she was bad with names, faces so I introduce myself officially. BUT this happens every time I see her - we have been to braais together and STILL each time I have to reintroduce myself. So now I stop. I star blankly back at her!

  3. I usually cause the awkwardness I fear. I'm much better at the smile and nod, and hiding!

  4. Haha...I think everyone likes to fill a void. ;-)
    When I am around the silent types I just tell them things, I don't ask. And I don't stick around waiting for feedback. Drop my comment, walk to the other side of the room. If they want to talk they come to you.

  5. I know exactly how you feel! I, too, have NO problem talking about most anything, to anyone. It's very natural to me, and I occasionally forget how hard it must be for other people sometimes.

    Yesterday, we had a big work meeting (off site for the afternoon...supposed to be team-building). We were encouraged to go talk to people we didn't know. So, I did. In one case, I felt like I was "interrupting" the flow of conversation between two people (one of whom I knew). In the other, I think I made the poor guy nervous!

    I know a lot of this "skill" in innate, but I also credit having worked in the service industry (food service when I was growing up/in school) with the ability to talk to anyone. I think it's SO important!!! I'll be encouraging the girls in that area when they're old enough.

  6. The same thing happened to me at the last birthday party we went to. It wasn't the birthday twins' mom. It was another mom of another guest. She has a Villanova shirt on. I say, hey I just graduated from Villanova. She only asked my area and I told her. Then I say my undergrad was in engineering at Drexel, as the Nova shirt is from the college of engineering. Total silence. Nothing. Tom told me later she must just be an introvert. I felt so awkward!!!

  7. I hate it when that happens. It is SO awkward. I also talk and talk and talk to fill the space.



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