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Old 09-28-2012, 10:15 AM
 
Location: Louisiana and Pennsylvania
2,755 posts, read 5,309,334 times
Reputation: 2685

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Quote:
Originally Posted by regular folk View Post
My wife is not too friendly to strangers. People approach her on a regular basis and make small talk to her just to be friendly or to pass the time. She does not respond.

It bugs me how coldly she treats these people and I ask her about it and she says, "I didn't ask those people to speak to me, they have no business with me, they are just destroying my privacy!"

These could be people who are in a grocery line, or the grocery check out cashier, someone pumping gas next to her, the mailman, security guards, handymen who do work around the house, etc. They seem to be speaking to her in a nice way and are not crazy or homeless or using her to try to sell something.

To me, if someone speaks to me and asks a question or makes some type of comment they are owed some type of response. Exactly how long to keep the conversation engaged is the question.

What do you think?
It depends..Sometimes we are put into common circumstances where small talk is inevitable, such as a delayed train, plane, etc.

By nature, I'm quiet, but if you speak to me, I'm not going to blow you off. That's just plain rude. Granted, some people have ulterior motives, and I can undertand your wife being guarded to some degree. Certain situations dictate that.
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:18 AM
 
Location: North Shore Long Island
7,752 posts, read 14,376,220 times
Reputation: 10630
Quote:
Originally Posted by regular folk View Post

What do you think?
I kick them in the shins and shout "Stranger! Danger!"
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:34 AM
 
Location: New Jersey
8,738 posts, read 9,942,376 times
Reputation: 7531
Quote:
Originally Posted by regular folk View Post
My wife is not too friendly to strangers. People approach her on a regular basis and make small talk to her just to be friendly or to pass the time. She does not respond.

It bugs me how coldly she treats these people and I ask her about it and she says, "I didn't ask those people to speak to me, they have no business with me, they are just destroying my privacy!"

These could be people who are in a grocery line, or the grocery check out cashier, someone pumping gas next to her, the mailman, security guards, handymen who do work around the house, etc. They seem to be speaking to her in a nice way and are not crazy or homeless or using her to try to sell something.

To me, if someone speaks to me and asks a question or makes some type of comment they are owed some type of response. Exactly how long to keep the conversation engaged is the question.

What do you think?

well you married her. she sounds over the top.


I hate small talk and don't really understand the 'point' of it. if someone talks to me I talk to them. But it never occurs to me to start 'small talk.'
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:36 AM
 
3,967 posts, read 4,590,021 times
Reputation: 3656
I ignore them and I don't give a flip what they think.
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:40 AM
 
509 posts, read 656,157 times
Reputation: 628
While I don't seek it out, I will respond to attempts at casual conversation in the grocery line, restaurants, whatever. I'm friendly, just more of an introverted, quiet friendly Having brightly/oddly colored hair has actually helped a bit with increasing my level of interaction with strangers (Which I feel is a good thing for me, as it keeps me from being too shy/reserved). I get approached frequently and end up chatting with someone about it most every time I am out.
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:53 AM
 
Location: Littleton, CO
3,111 posts, read 4,884,118 times
Reputation: 5429
Quote:
Originally Posted by regular folk View Post
My wife is not too friendly to strangers. People approach her on a regular basis and make small talk to her just to be friendly or to pass the time. She does not respond.

It bugs me how coldly she treats these people and I ask her about it and she says, "I didn't ask those people to speak to me, they have no business with me, they are just destroying my privacy!"

These could be people who are in a grocery line, or the grocery check out cashier, someone pumping gas next to her, the mailman, security guards, handymen who do work around the house, etc. They seem to be speaking to her in a nice way and are not crazy or homeless or using her to try to sell something.

To me, if someone speaks to me and asks a question or makes some type of comment they are owed some type of response. Exactly how long to keep the conversation engaged is the question.

What do you think?
I am not a talkative person by nature, but it is rude not to acknowledge a person who has spoken to you.

It almost sounds like you are married to royalty, where people are not allowed to initiate conversation her and must address her in a certain way.

It sounds like a lonely way to go through life.
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:53 AM
 
Location: Simmering in DFW
6,948 posts, read 19,395,173 times
Reputation: 7202
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skeksil View Post
While I don't seek it out, I will respond to attempts at casual conversation in the grocery line, restaurants, whatever. I'm friendly, just more of an introverted, quiet friendly Having brightly/oddly colored hair has actually helped a bit with increasing my level of interaction with strangers (Which I feel is a good thing for me, as it keeps me from being too shy/reserved). I get approached frequently and end up chatting with someone about it most every time I am out.

Purple? Fire-Engine Red?
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:54 AM
 
509 posts, read 656,157 times
Reputation: 628
Quote:
Originally Posted by Squirl View Post
Purple? Fire-Engine Red?
Haha, purple at the moment.
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:54 AM
 
Location: zone 5
7,330 posts, read 13,176,039 times
Reputation: 9611
Quote:
Originally Posted by exscapegoat View Post
Now, if Sidney said "eff you and your good morning and the horse (or bus) you rode in on", I would be offended.
The thing is, if you don't give just a small acknowlegement (it doesn't have to be much, a pleasant one word answer will do) a well-meaning person can think that you meant exactly that, without saying so.
In the grocery store a while back, a woman put something in her cart that I'd been thinking of trying but wasn't sure I'd like. I asked her a question about it, and she just looked at me like wtf is wrong with you and walked away. It didn't make a good impression on me. I didn't mean any harm, I just wanted to know something and since she was buying it, I figured she knew.
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Old 09-28-2012, 11:04 AM
 
155 posts, read 301,305 times
Reputation: 349
Where I'm from, strangers who make small talk tend to use this line somewhere in the conversation: "Say, do you have any spare change."

Then there are people you know. Years ago I passed a co-worker in the hall on my way to the restroom. In passing, I used the friendly, "How's it going?" And he told me! For twenty minutes!

Everytime I tried to interrupt, he just kept going on and on about his problems. Finally, I said, "I've got a meeting to go to."
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