Thursday, May 26, 2005

Anthropology 215

What is the physiological indication to someone that you want them to start talking to you? Is there anyway to turn this off or is it a subconscious desire to communicate with fellow man that is too ingrained to deny? I often wonder this as someone starts talking to me and I really don't have anything to say, nor do I care to hear what they are saying. Did I twitch my shoulder slightly, indicating that I was receptive to stories about someone's son’s long hair and rock ‘n roll sensibilities? Was it the way I arched my eyebrows in confusion that indicated I was currently consuming all available Amazing Race talk? Was my sarcastic hand puppet "blah-blah-blahing" misinterpreted as an invitation to spill all the beans about an uncomfortable pair of khakis? Did my presence at the water fountain betray an unknown desire to discuss the lack of stir straw apropos of nothing?

I'm not a misanthrope, nor do I think I'm inherently more interesting than other people, nor am I a very demanding listener. But I am good at determining when what I have a desire to say is mind-numbingly boring. That, my friends, is a little thing I like to call empathy. Is it too much to ask?


Blogger Joe said...

I felt the need to comment based on what I interpreted as a subconcious desire on your part to read my ramblings.

You could always just do this. Smile and nod until they're finished and then say "I hope you didn't interpret my smiling and nodding to mean I was interested in anything you just said. It's just something I've learned to do to be polite."

7:53 AM

Anonymous Dana said...

From the professional:

Never. Make. Eye. Contact.

Once, you do, you are stuck. I think though, maybe you are just generally screwed because you have this "friendly" look about you. People see me and shiver.

10:34 AM

Blogger roger said...

J: My subconscious foils me once again!

D: I think you're onto something. I'm off to get into a knife fight.

8:36 PM


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