If you see a whole thing - it seems that it's always beautiful. Planets, lives... But up close a world's all dirt and rocks. And day to day, life's a hard job, you get tired, you lose the pattern. - Ursula K. LeGuin

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

A Bit More on Conversational Styles

At some point early in our marriage I realized that b's family, my in-laws, had a very different conversational style than what I grew up with. In trying to explain this to b I used the analogy of food. His family is all cocktails and hor d'oeuvres. The conversation flits from topic to topic and person to person with the primary motive being to entertain and be witty. He agreed but replied that conversation in my family is the main course--usually large and difficult to digest. This is quite true, my family will dive into a topic and chew it to pieces. Our primary motive is to (over)analyze and be intelligent. It helped me realize why I had such difficulty "fitting in" at his family gatherings. Every time I found a topic I could sink my teeth into it was gone and they were three topics ahead. It didn't offer any solutions but sometimes framing the problem is the best you're going to get.

1 comment:

Amanda said...

I have that same problem with Dr. Man's family (except it's the opposite). They tend to dig in on a topic and I'm ready to move on to the next appetizer!