A while ago I read a book by Deborah Tannen entitled, You Just Don’t Understand: Women and
Men in Conversation. She explored/researched the different ways men and women communicate.
In communication, as in many other ways, we truly are from different cultures. Funny as it
seems, this book actually helped me understand my conversations with my mother more than
with my husband or other men.
But what I’m thinking about today is that, in part of the book, she talked about how when some
people begin talking, everyone stops and listens. However, some people are more regularly
interrupted or ignored. I recognized myself when she described this phenomenon. I’ve always
known (and have grown comfortable with the fact) that I don’t tell stories/jokes well. Sometimes
the rhythms of conversation escape me, and my part in conversations is sometimes sort of “out of
time.” I am more comfortable listening than talking anyway, and I don’t necessarily notice, or
even mind, when I am “shut down.”
This spreads to other parts of life. When I give a “party” (rarely) or host the book group, I like
when you come, but I’m not hurt if you don’t show up.
Extrapolating, I find there are aspects of social media, Facebook, blogging, Instagram, and
especially Twitter, that escape me. I like the idea of blogging; I like to write. I would like to
write. I’d like to keep in contact with friends. I’d like an exchange of ideas, so I like the
possibilities that social media could provide, but then there are my own tendencies and
experiences that plant this thought: “this might be like giving a party; a few may come, but
maybe not. After all they are busy, and really, I understand that. I may go to all this
work/thought/care, and no one may show up.”
So, in all the things I could/should be doing, where does writing down some thoughts and sending them out there into the world rank? Well, it’s pretty obvious, it hasn’t been very high. However, and here it is again, a big however, I do like to write and would like to write, and I would like to be in touch with others; I would like an exchange of ideas and writing. So, I guess, I’m thinking I’ll keep sending out invitations to my party. If you come, great! We’ll have a good time. If not this time, maybe next. For now, I can live with that.