I Hate Small Talk!!!!

Canada
August 6, 2008 3:04pm CST
Why do people do this? What part of a person at a cafe paying attention to the computer and whatever food or drink they've orders, and not paying attention to the rest of the world is so attractive to certain people? I was sitting here at a table at he cae, when an older lady sat down across from me and just sated talking. I really could not move, because I had my compue plugged i, and a full table. This cafe is locted right in the middle of a University Campus, so A LOT OF PEOPLE my age and older come in here with the computers to WORK! This is my internet hot spot, since I don't have the net a home. I do have friends in here that I talk to now and then. Sometimes we're in the mood to talk, other times I'll walk by one of their tables, and they'll be urried in a ook, or at their own computers. We know eachother well enough. We can always tell. Is anyone as annoyed with random strangers as I am? I know some could say "cut them some slack, they're probably lonely" or something but.... a) I have Aspergers and even MY social skills are better than that!!! b) I will not be guilted c) The very people who tell me to cut them some slack would criticise me for doing the exact same things these people do to me.
9 people like this
33 responses
@Muelitz (1592)
• Canada
6 Aug 08
I am also annoyed when people would start to talk to me especially if I am very busy doing something. For arguments sake, let as assume that they are really very friendly, for me the only time they should start to make a conversation is if they look at you and smile and you smiled back and give them a look that you are interested to converse with them. Otherwise if you look away, they should get the idea that you don't want to talk to them. I sometimes just continue what I was doing or walk away.
3 people like this
• Canada
6 Aug 08
Thanks!! I did that and this lady kept on talking. She sat here for hours, and drove me nuts!
2 people like this
@GardenGerty (95682)
• Marion, Kansas
7 Aug 08
I work with mentally handicapped adults, and sometimes they talk and talk and talk, about things I do not even need to know about, sometimes about things that are not true. I have charting to do at the end of the day, and my key phrase for them is that now is the time I have to use my brain, and it is hard to do when I listen to them. I will be glad to listen after I do my work. Do not know if that approach would work for your annoying strangers.
1 person likes this
• United States
6 Aug 08
i dont know but i hate small talk too and if i am out doing something such as shopping i keep my mind on that and only that and hate to be interrupted and then lose my train of thought etc
3 people like this
• Canada
6 Aug 08
Amen to that! :) When I am shopping, I just want to get in, get what I want and get out!
2 people like this
@fwidman (11517)
• United States
6 Aug 08
If I saw someone in a cafe with a computer I'd ignore them. I don't know why people would do such a thing to you. Maybe you just look approachable? Maybe you need to practice scowling or something, looking like you are mad at the world and then they will leave you be
@philjas (1134)
• United States
6 Aug 08
Unfortunately that probably wouldn't work - then they'd probably walk up to you and ask you why you look so glum. People do THAT to me all the time, and it's particularly annoying when I'm NOT in a bad mood or anything, I'm just sitting there and they feel the need to approach me and ask me what's wrong. I can't help it if my natural expression is... sullen. And if I really am in a bad mood then I REALLY don't want anything bothering me about it!
1 person likes this
@fwidman (11517)
• United States
6 Aug 08
People rarely talk to me in those settings, so I must really look angry with the world I often look angry even when I am in the best of moods, I have no idea why that is.
1 person likes this
• Canada
6 Aug 08
I seem to get the following types of eople. -People who are curious about the coputer -People who are curious about my white cane -People who want to know what kind of coffee I'm drinking -Older ladies who want to gossip -People who notice the THICK book I'm eading and wonde why I'd read something so thick I'm almost blind anyway If I wore a Burka to the cafe THEN would people leave me alone? :) When I am WORKING or READING I'm BUSY! Then when I politely say this to some people I actualy get people who say "if you don't want to socialize, don't come out in public!" My response to that is that I'll have to talk to management, because I am not paying for the snotty atmosphere.
@raydene (9875)
• United States
6 Aug 08
Honey I would say" Sorry but I'm in the middle of something and need my space" Then I'd smaile and add" Thank you so much for moving" Then I would look at my puter and get busy while they move. I don't find it rude because you didn't invite her so she was the rude one. I mean I could sorta understand if the place was packed and that was the only seat left ..then I would just say the first part and keep working. We have the right to our space... xoxoxoxo
2 people like this
• Canada
6 Aug 08
Thanks. There were LOOADS of empty tables!
1 person likes this
• United States
6 Aug 08
Well, yes it DOES annoy the heck out of me. Even here at home. If I am on the computer then I am busy. So, please leave me alone! I don't like strangers sitting with me..period. If they are lonely, then why don't they talk to someone who is NOT busy doing something like reading or on the computer? They should look around and find someone twiddling their thumbs and looking bored to talk to if they MUST chat to someone. There are social clubs for that sort of thing. I try to workout at the gym and I count my sets and repetitions. Every once in a while someone will stand there and try to talk to me while I am trying to workout and count (rolling my eyes). I normally just smile, don't answer and kind of turn my head away or say my count out loud. Like a HINT! lol
2 people like this
• Canada
6 Aug 08
Why waste a smile on a rude stanger? After this lady woudln't quit talking I finally told her that I'm WORKING. Now she's siting across from me reading a newspaper. I think I'll put my headphones on.
@Vladilyich1 (1453)
• Canada
7 Aug 08
I usually keep a hostile look on my face, which discourages people from approaching me in the first place.
@hezoid (2150)
6 Aug 08
I don't think it's rude, i think it's just human nature. Some people just cannot stand silence and feel the need to fill it. I guess if you are in a public place like a cafe people assume it's ok to chat, i don't think they'd do it if they were in a library or somewhere that was meant to be quiet. I suppose you don't quite have your head in a computer the way you can have your head in a book. You can move easily look like you don't want to be disturbed when you have your head in a book. Maybe try wearing some headphones if you don't want to be disturbed? That might work.
1 person likes this
@hezoid (2150)
6 Aug 08
Now that is rude to tap you on the shoulder when you have headphones on. What i mean is it's easier to look like you have your head in a book than look like you have your head in a coputer. People usually take the hint that you don't want to be disturbed when you have a book in front of you but they don't necessarily when you have a computer in front of you.
@ZephyrSun (7387)
• United States
6 Aug 08
I am having trouble thinking of anything to say since I can't stop laughing about the part of "a) I have Aspergers and even MY social skills are better than that!!!" I'm sorry I just don't know what to say, maybe you could politely say, I am trying to work and right now you are not allowing that to happen. Anyway, I really hope that people leave you alone.
1 person likes this
@ZephyrSun (7387)
• United States
6 Aug 08
It's so had with my child because he appears to have social skills but he suffers from affect. He basically will talk to anyone but he doesn't care what they have to say to him lol. I really wish that I had that problem. As for the small talk, it wouldn't be lying because you are making money even if it isn't the traditional 9-5 job.
@alkurishy (2069)
• Iraq
6 Aug 08
Well my dear friend, I think you are right I hate that when happen to me and I don't want to embarrass them if they do that, but at the end if they continue doing that even if I don't pay attention to them so I will say something make them go away. I don't like people be like this and waste my time while I am working on something. Have a nice day my dear.
1 person likes this
• Canada
6 Aug 08
Thank you for undersanding.
• United States
6 Aug 08
you really should get on the social boat.. its a whole lot more fun knowing your nice to everyone
1 person likes this
• Canada
6 Aug 08
So I hould just shut up, and follow the crowd? Not bloody likely! Do I look like I was born in Stepford?
1 person likes this
@philjas (1134)
• United States
6 Aug 08
I agree with you, it's just plain rude for strangers to do this.
1 person likes this
• Canada
6 Aug 08
Definitely!!! A computer, a book, a newspaper, any sign that the person is otherwise occupied should be a CLUE!!!
1 person likes this
@Elkeliini (265)
• Finland
7 Aug 08
move to finland. it would never happen to you here ;)
1 person likes this
• Vietnam
7 Aug 08
yes,i hate small talk,too!
1 person likes this
@reckon21 (3487)
• Philippines
7 Aug 08
That's one of my problem, if somebody interrupted me from something that I'm doing, I just can't say no. I always listen. I don't have the courage to sent them away. So, I ended myself talking to them.
@GardenGerty (95682)
• Marion, Kansas
7 Aug 08
Man, you must have found the same people I did tonight. We had some errands out of town, and ended our evening by going to a nice restaurant that we seldom get to go to. A country type restaurant. The man across the row from us could not stop trying to make conversation. And he was hard of hearing, so he spoke loudly. When we came in he was giving the waitress a hard time, with some slightly awkward questions. Not naughty, but impertinent. Then he started on me. I did cut him some slack, but I wish he had not been there, I would have liked to talk with my husband. In your case, maybe you should wear head phones, even if they are not plugged into any real music, it would be a visual "Do not disturb" sign. Maybe there is a seat you can pick that will give you more privacy.
@nonew3 (1941)
• United States
7 Aug 08
I hate small talk when it is obvious that I am busy, and I hate it when salsepeople in stores keep asking me if I need help finding anything, because I very easily lose my train of thought. Then I can't remember what I am there for or was doing. I also have a problem of not being able to hear myself think. It is very annoying.
@nonew3 (1941)
• United States
7 Aug 08
I am also a bit hard of hearing, and so I end up saying, "What?" and "I'm sorry?" and asking them to repeat themselves, when they do that. Really, I wish they would stop.
• United States
7 Aug 08
I understand. My small talk does not happen in a cafe. It is the library. There is a certain librarian who will look at each book she is checking out and make comments or small talk about them. I really wish she wouldn't. I just want my books and to go!
@riyasam (16578)
• India
7 Aug 08
i just ignore them.
@dizzblnd (3073)
• United States
16 Oct 08
I am one of those random people that would annoy you. LOL I like striking up converstion wit strangers. If we are sharing the same space, I somehow feel obligated to say somethin.. weird and sad? Probably. Normally I am greeted with a kind smile, or a great laugh in return. I guess I just never think about what the other person might think. So on behalf of all the random strangers you encounter. I am sorry
• United States
19 Aug 08
I can't imagine doing that to a stranger. That sort of thing should be limited to people you know fairly well. Maybe you just look so friendly that they just can't help themselves.... Time to start acting creepy enough to keep people at bay.... LOL
@elmiko (6640)
• United States
17 Aug 08
Maybe shes lonely since shes an old lady.