About casual talk

In most English-speaking countries, small talk is a casual form of conversation that “breaks the ice” or fills an awkward silence between people. Silence can be considered rude.

The hardest part about making small talk is knowing how to start a conversation. In an English-speaking environment it is often better to make a few mistakes than to say nothing…

Hi there! I’m a bike messenger by day, aspiring actor by night, and this is my website. I live in Los Angeles, have a great dog named Jack, and I like piña coladas. (And gettin’ caught in the rain.)

…or something like this:

The Doohickey Company was founded in 1971, and has been providing quality doohickeys to the public ever since. Located in Gotham City, The employ over 2,000 people and do all kinds of awesome things for the Gotham community.

Some keys to the practice and background of casual talk in English.

WHO makes casual talk?

People with many different relationships use small talk. Especially those who do not know each other at all. It is used in different situations.

WHAT is casual talk about?

Safe topics like the weather or current events or news. Never a controversial issue.  Sports news is a very common topic, just like entertainment news. Personal information, private issues or negative comments are not done. Compliments on clothing or hair are acceptable but never say something about a person’s body. It is unsafe to discuss subjects that society deems controversial. Do not continue talking about issues that the other person does not seem comfortable with or interested in.

WHERE do people make small talk?

Just about anywhere, most often, casual talk occurs in places where people are waiting for something (bus, aeroplane, waiting room of a doctor, queues in a store, parties) . You  “mingle” walking around in a social setting and talking to a variety of people.

WHEN do people make casual talk?

When it is the first time you see or meet someone on a given day. The next time you might just smile and say nothing. WAit for appropriate moments to tzlk. Do not interrupt others.

WHY do people make small talk?

There are a few different reasons. To break an uncomfortable silence. To fill time. Especially when you are waiting for something. Or just in order to be polite. You do not sit in a corner just by yourself.