I’m a people person. Wait, what I mean to say is, “I’m a people, person.” As in, “Hey, you person, I am a people so please afford me the basic courtesy of never speaking to me, making eye contact with me or acknowledging our simultaneous existence in any way. Thanks.”
I do not care for small talk. I find something repulsive and detestable about a stranger feeling so uncomfortable with a shared silence that they feel the need to strangle it to death with meaningless words. It’s like they notice the presence of another human and their lizard brain immediately commands them, “MAKE NOISE! MAKE NOISE TO SEEM SCARY OR IT WILL EAT YOU! ALSO MAKE YOURSELF BIG! LOOK BIGGER AND MAKE NOISE AND YOU WILL SURVIVE THIS!” I love conversation, but I love for it to be real; to have a purpose.
I’m even happy with casual conversation from a stranger, if it has a purpose. “Am I near the dog park?” “How do you get there?” “Have you seen my dog?” “WHERE AM I?! WHERE IS MY DOG?! WHERE I AM GOING?! HOW DID I GET… oh, there’s my dog. Come along, Crackers.” These are purposeful words. These words are unlike, “Hey… Mondays, am I right?” “That’s some weather we’ve been having.” and “Big plans for the weekend?” You can probably tell that my most frequent exposure to this smallest of talk was in elevators back when I had a regular job. There’s something about elevators that squeezes words out of people like a long since empty tube of toothpaste. There’s nothing in there, but you squeeze and fold and force it none the less until something, anything comes out. In these circumstances, I wouldn’t even mind the small talk if it was just honest. “How about that crippling despair that’s been going around?” “That’s some irreversible damage we’ve done to the only planet we have; the only home our children and our children’s children will inherit, am I right?” “You got any plans for the unending nothingness that awaits us all upon our deaths?”
It’s holidays times, so I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that I have an Amazon Wishlist for any of you who are interested in such things.