New This Month

Conversation Starters and Stoppers

Blueprint, Summer 2006

An awkward pause can open like a sinkhole in the middle of party patter, sending you and your conversation partner scrambling for safety. Here are some suggestions next time you need help reaching for the right words.

Start With
-Say something nice: "What a beautiful necklace you're wearing!"

-Compliment the host: "Jane always makes the best crab cakes."

-Discuss something everyone can agree on (the weather, the traffic).

Stop With
-Say something nosy: "How much did you pay for that necklace?"

-Cut down the host: "It's so like Jane to use fake crab in the 'crab' cakes."

-Dispute something no one ever agrees on (God, Al Gore).

Comments Add a comment