I know I poke fun at the gents quite a bit- everyone knows a good manboy story makes for good literature- but may I address the ladies of this world for a moment?
Can you all just shut up?
I mean, seriously. Do you really think anyone cares about the history of your hair colour, the 5 lbs of fluctuation that's undetectable to the rest of the world, or that guy who doesn't know you like him because you've never bothered to talk to him? Do you think you're impressing anyone by "talk(ing) about people you don't even know and talk(ing) about places that you don't even go?" It makes you look like a braggart and an idiot. Even worse- it makes you boring. (Cardinal sin.)
Recently some friends went on a trip where they could have made a few new friends...But one girl just could not stop talking about herself! Between her implants, fake tan, terrible attitude, whining, the ridiculous amount of references to posh places she obviously had never attended and people she obviously was not close friends with; no one was interested in getting to know her. I felt a little sad for this girl; clearly she needed attention and didn't feel she would get it on her own accord. But does she really have to broadcast her low self-esteem on the airwaves when the very appearance of her made it obvious? Honestly! Gossip is dangerous, damaging, and desperate. We'd like to pretend it's sensational, but- let's be real here- if I don't know them, why do I want to hear about their personal business?
I grew up with Run DMC on our family boom box. This song always hit a chord with me then because I felt it was a lesson to be learned on how NOT to be annoying. Hearing it again, now, I love the wisdom in not just the words, but the message. Talking in order to boast of oneself or to create drama or sensation by using other people's lives is selfish and damaging. It makes what you have to say empty noise full of useless words. And it's kind of disgusting, piggish behavior that only self-indulgent yuppies participate in.
So next time you talk to someone and you feel like you're not getting a response from them- don't panic and fill the air with sounds of your own voice. Ask THEM a question. Encourage THEM to talk. What's truly brilliant is that they suddenly find YOU interesting! And you'll come off looking wicked smart because you didn't actually have to think of anything to talk about- you can just throw the ball in their court to whatever topic you're interested in. Then your talking becomes more than merely idle chat. It becomes a conversation. And THAT is how you begin relationships where someone might actually care about what you have to say.
Better to be silent and appear the fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.