Picture this: you are walking down the street to your class when suddenly, you run into an acquaintance you know from around campus. You strike up a conversation and try to act as friendly as you possibly can. Then, without realizing what has happened, you are suddenly trapped in a 10 minute discussion about the weather. It is of no benefit to either party stuck talking about it, yet for some god forsaken reason, this happens to everybody all the time. Talking about the weather has become the default of boring small talk with others and we as a society should tolerate it no longer.
As an NYU freshman, it can be hard to start interesting and engaging conversations with fellow students. However, to talk about the weather is barely better than simply opening your mouth and emitting unintelligible sounds. Over the course of a lifetime, a person could waste hours, even days talking about this saltine cracker of a subject. Unless it is to inform someone who is unaware of the outside temperature, there is literally not a single thing to gain from talking about the weather and every time we talk about it outside of the appropriate context, we are essentially just wasting our gift of speaking.
Each and every time we converse with someone else, we have an opportunity to talk about literally anything else. You can talk about movies, music, philosophy, sports or even politics — and every time that each of these interesting and thought provoking subjects is ignored for mind-numbing talk about the weather, you take another step closer to becoming nothing more than an L.L. Bean catalogue of a human being. Unless we as a human race want to be the equivalent of boring khaki pants and grey sweaters, it is our duty to talk about things worth talking about. We can no longer stand idly by and allow this epidemic to take hold of the next generation — we must begin by stepping out of our awkward shells and make this change in our everyday lives.
Conversing with others opens new worlds. They have been the driving force between diplomacy and saving lives. You can learn about the complexities and depths of another person. You can learn something new or discuss something you deeply care about. Through the medium of conversation, the epiphanies of the world are waiting. It is interacting with a fellow human being and realizing all the possible opportunities that lie in the exchange. So, instead of spewing out the simplest observations that it is either mildly warm or mildly cold outside, please talk about literally anything else at all.
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Email Thomas Price at [email protected]