Social Question

Hibernate's avatar

What do you talk about when you first meet someone ?

Asked by Hibernate (9022 points ) June 23rd, 2011

At the first encounter with someone what do you talk about ?

What do you like to say or what are the things you start talking about ?

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31 Answers

_zen_'s avatar

Small talk, the weather and such. In Canada it might start with “Cold enough fer ya? and in London it might be “lucky it was so nice and sunny today – that won’t last, eh?”

Then family and job and such. The usual.

Bellatrix's avatar

Maybe what brought them to the place where we met? If it was a party, “oh how do you know xxx”. Or perhaps they have a lovely handbag or necklace or something… I might mention that. Or if it was a work thing “where do you work?” and “what do you do there?”. “Have you been to [insert city name] before?” “How are you finding the content of the [conference… other event?].

_zen_'s avatar

@Bellatrix How do you know XXX?! Lol. Reminds of my ex – our first date – true story – she asked for a hug at the end of the meeting – and said “what do you think about sex…?” Needless to say, I replied: I think it’s just dandy. What did you have in mind.”

Bellatrix's avatar

lol well it worked for you hey? Sounds like a very successful meeting :-)

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

What we like. Who we hate. Who we think is hot. What we like to do.

jeremyh's avatar

I normally didn’t start the conversation its always the other person. But i just ask about him and his family. If he/she talks more on something then i just take up from where he stops.

SuperMouse's avatar

I tend to begin by asking the person a few questions about themselves.

Cruiser's avatar

Where they live, what they do for a living, kids, 2nd amendment, shoe size, favorite place to get ice cream…

erichw1504's avatar

The weather. “My, it’s a nice day today.”

LuckyGuy's avatar

The venue.

redfeather's avatar

Depends on who it is and where we are. Either, “oh, how do you know ___?” or “No thank you, I really don’t want another drink.”

bob_'s avatar

“What do you mean you don’t like pastrami?”

What zen said.

missafantastico's avatar

Start with a compliment or a comment/observation regarding the surroundings.

Follow up name exchange and a firm, but not over powering handshake.

Continue with clever and funny banter.

gondwanalon's avatar

People love to talk about themselves so I go about it with that angle. “How are you?” “What is happening in your world?”. “Tell me all about what you just said.”, etc. Pretend that you are really interested in what the other person is telling you.

Blondesjon's avatar

I like to start unzipping my pants while asking, “Hey! You ever seen one of these?”

gailcalled's avatar

Usually about the weather (always something around here,) the condition of the 57 miles of dirt roads (wretched) and the latest animal sightings (this week a mother bear and her cubs, several fishers, some weasels, a mountain lion, a bob cat, a serval cat, coyotes and foxes).

Then we move on to deaths, births, and taxes; gossip about who’s living with whom; recent operations (particularly hip replacements); our pets; our summer plans and number of visitors; good recipes for the summer produce and restaurant reviews; and how many snapping turtles we have assisted across the road.

erichw1504's avatar

“Why are your clothes still on?”

Paul's avatar

Hi, I’m Paul, and you are? Then it’s South from there on in.
Laughing at @erichw1504‘s answer

SpatzieLover's avatar

Weather, followed by local happenings, or if at a venue the food or the guests/hosts.

Coloma's avatar

Yes, to most of the above, although I think the weather intro is so, so, banal. lol

I help run our local river store and one of my intros with customers is always ” So, are you folks local or enjoying a day trip or traveling?” I come into contact with lots of travelers so it is always easy to strike up a chat about where they are from. We have lots of river guides from New Zealand and Australia and South America.

In party, social situations I usually break the ice with a little humor, never have a problem engaging others, I’m a natural. :-D

SpatzieLover's avatar

@Coloma Where you reside talking about the weather may be banal…here it could be 32 degrees overnight, hit 85during the day, then a fog could roll in off the lake at night due to a 60 degree swing in temperature. ;)

Coloma's avatar

@SpatzieLover

Haha..well, our weather is important to this area too, needs to be hot enough in the summer for the rafting crowd and cold enough in the winter for the sking crowd further up the mountain.
I just meant, saying ” Wow, it’s sure hot today, is kinda an oxymoron to me, I mean, yes, it’s almost July. lol

SpatzieLover's avatar

lol4rl I agree w/that. Here it’s more like “Crap! Isn’t it supposed to be summer?!”

wundayatta's avatar

Depends where I meet them. Yeah, if it’s in the elevator or the lobby or crossing paths, then it’s certainly the weather. But usually I’m meeting people somewhere for a purpose or talking to them after a function. In those cases, we talk about things related to why we are there.

If the conversation expands, it’ll do it naturally. We’ll be talking about our lives. Children, spouses, work, fun, philosophy of life, the situation with medicine, writing, story telling, etc etc etc.

I hardly ever go to parties where I don’t know people any more. So I don’t run into strangers and try to start a conversation with them. If I did, and we made small talk, it would probably end like that. I need big talk or I’m too bored to stay there. Sometimes people will play along, and sometimes they look at me cross-eyed and tell me their spouse is signalling to them. No rings on their fingers, I might add!

MilkyWay's avatar

Talk about hobbies and interests, weather, food, music, that sort of thing.

sliceswiththings's avatar

We usually talk about me. When my occupation comes up, which is usually early in a conversation, the person usually has a lot of follow-up questions. :)

Bellatrix's avatar

Now I want to know what @sliceswiththings does for a living!!

sliceswiththings's avatar

@Bellatrix I am a traveling street musician (accordion) :) If you’re interested I suppose I can link my blog!

Bellatrix's avatar

Well why not! How fascinating. I wouldn’t think there are many accordion players around. If we met at a party, I would certainly want to know more too.

Hibernate's avatar

Thanks for replies.

Inspired_2write's avatar

Ask questions to determine compatibility/interests etc

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