Poll

Do you want strangers to make small talk with you?

UK: No, never.
3 (2.9%)
UK: I don't mind being asked a quick question, but I don't want to chat.
28 (26.7%)
UK: Bring it on!
4 (3.8%)
UK: I'd probably be STARTING the conversation.
3 (2.9%)
US: No, never.
5 (4.8%)
US: I don't mind being asked a quick question, but I don't want to chat.
41 (39%)
US: Bring it on!
15 (14.3%)
US: I'd probably be STARTING the conversation.
6 (5.7%)

Total Members Voted: 105

Author Topic: S/O: Talking to strangers. US vs UK: The poll!  (Read 2540 times)

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cabbageweevil

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Re: S/O: Talking to strangers. US vs UK: The poll!
« Reply #15 on: August 19, 2013, 03:58:38 PM »
I'm intrigued that all the UK people have picked the same answer!! (13 so far.)

I was just about to make the same comment !  All UK responders, including myself, have gone for the "I don't mind a quick question, but I don't want to chat" option.  So have a quite large majority of American responders -- but there have been a few American votes for all the other three options.

On another message board which I frequent -- one set up to discuss "anything and everything"; a big majority of the participants there, are US or Canadian citizens / residents -- there's a thread (without a poll) going on right now, on very much this topic.  Thread is titled, "How often do you talk to strangers? Do you like it when they talk to you?" Of the just over fifty relevant answers to date: so far as I can calculate, 42% are basically pro-strangers talking with each other; 32%, basically "anti"; with 26% in the "it depends" ballpark.

I don't know what conclusions -- if any -- can be drawn from all the above; but as faithlessone says, it's intriguing.

emwithme

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Re: S/O: Talking to strangers. US vs UK: The poll!
« Reply #16 on: August 19, 2013, 06:56:25 PM »
I'm UK and picked "bring it on" because most days I'll chat to anyone and everyone - and will sit and listen to old ladies and gents talk about the past until their eyes glaze over - but some days I just can't handle it (due to pain related to my disabilities).

Having grown up living with my grandmother (due to my mum's disabilities she was in and out of hospital during my teens and died when I was 16) I am very aware that sometimes the person on the bus, or in the shop, or wherever, is the only person that elderly person has spoken to all day and am (generally) willing to sit and listen and make their day better. 

amandaelizabeth

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Re: S/O: Talking to strangers. US vs UK: The poll!
« Reply #17 on: August 20, 2013, 12:56:15 AM »
Here in New Zealand, I think we talk to any one, any where.  Maybe because it is a small place and within several minutes we can establish a connection.  Seems to work with overseas visitors too, you would be amazed at the connections we discover.


Library Dragon

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Re: S/O: Talking to strangers. US vs UK: The poll!
« Reply #18 on: August 20, 2013, 01:03:06 AM »
I don't mind a quick comment or two and am often the person to make them.  That's different than a long chat. 

One of my favorite things about flying s uninterrupted reading time.  I may make a friendly comment to the person next to me, but then the book is opening and enjoy your flight.

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saki

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Re: S/O: Talking to strangers. US vs UK: The poll!
« Reply #19 on: August 20, 2013, 06:24:08 AM »
I think it's very regional within the UK.   I grew up in the South-East and now live in London where it just Isn't Done to chat to strangers.  But I've lived in other places in the UK where people are more open to it - in a small town in Scotland, even in a fairly large city in the South West, and definitely in the country-side in general.

But, as someone said in the other thread, the way in which it is done differs to the US (where I have been several times) - it's much more subtle.  You wouldn't just say "Hi, my name is..  how are you?" or anything, you'd slide into conversation more subtly.  If in a pub, you might say "Ooh, can't decide what beer to have, what are you drinking?" or "horrible weather, isn't it?" and see how the person responds

nayberry

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Re: S/O: Talking to strangers. US vs UK: The poll!
« Reply #20 on: August 23, 2013, 06:13:29 AM »
i normally start the convo's,  i can't help it, i kissed the blarney stone (although family would say i had the gift of the gab before that!!)

i also pull faces at small children, hold doors open for whoever is behind me and help carry pushchairs/buggies up or down stairs.


jaxsue

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Re: S/O: Talking to strangers. US vs UK: The poll!
« Reply #21 on: September 27, 2013, 01:00:51 AM »
Here in New Zealand, I think we talk to any one, any where.  Maybe because it is a small place and within several minutes we can establish a connection.  Seems to work with overseas visitors too, you would be amazed at the connections we discover.

I would love that! I grew up in a place where conversations with strangers was the norm. I have adjusted to how it is where I now live, but I'm lucky in that I live in a neighborhood where people are outgoing and friendly.

I need to visit NZ!  :)

jaxsue

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Re: S/O: Talking to strangers. US vs UK: The poll!
« Reply #22 on: September 27, 2013, 01:02:59 AM »
I think it's very regional within the UK.   I grew up in the South-East and now live in London where it just Isn't Done to chat to strangers.  But I've lived in other places in the UK where people are more open to it - in a small town in Scotland, even in a fairly large city in the South West, and definitely in the country-side in general.

But, as someone said in the other thread, the way in which it is done differs to the US (where I have been several times) - it's much more subtle.  You wouldn't just say "Hi, my name is..  how are you?" or anything, you'd slide into conversation more subtly.  If in a pub, you might say "Ooh, can't decide what beer to have, what are you drinking?" or "horrible weather, isn't it?" and see how the person responds

Actually, IME it's more the way you do it than the, "Hi, my name is..." in the US.

Katana_Geldar

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Re: S/O: Talking to strangers. US vs UK: The poll!
« Reply #23 on: September 27, 2013, 06:48:53 PM »
Here in Australia we will talk to people, just chitchat but it depends on the situation. We generally are friendlier people than otherwise.

This was actually how I met my husband. I was going to a gaming convention by myself and didn't know anyone. I started talking to him in the registration line and a few other people. I had made up my mind to meet people or I was going to be lonely.

I also don't kind talking to friendly cab drivers, they can have good stories.