Oddball Facts: Conversation Starters and Stoppers

Oddball Facts: Conversation Starters and Stoppers

Post from: MAPpingCompanySuccess

4192690649_4aa534b095_mThe holiday season starts earlier every year. Dinners and parties that require conversation—often about subjects other than work or the differences between Android and iPhone. With that in mind, for the next three weeks Oddball Facts will provide some intriguing bits of information that you can use to start or rescue a face-to-face conversation.

Most of the time conversations starters begin as a “did you know” question like this,  Did you know that the first product to have a bar code was Wrigley chewing gum?

But they don’t have to.

Let’s say you’re a bit shy, but want to start a conversation with a clean-shaven guy who looks interesting. You might mention that the  King of Hearts is the only king without a moustache and ask if he plays cards.

If you’re a guy looking for an opening line that’s not cliché, mix this factoid with a bit of charm like this, “You know, Venus is considered feminine and it’s the only planet that rotates clockwise, which probably means that the rest of the planets are masculine and a bit backwards.”

Or try this one if you like a more direct approach, but be careful, if you don’t get the second part out quickly it’s likely to backfire. “Did you know that you burn more calories sleeping than you do watching television? In fact, there are lots of things you can do in a bed or chair that burn more calories.

Factoids are also great conversation stoppers when you encounter a bore or, worse, a jerk.

For instance, you’re at a party and some woman is droning on and on about her most recent doctor visit or hospital stay. When she takes a breath you say, “Dentists say that one thing that will help you stay healthy is moving your toothbrush at least six feet away from the toilet to avoid  airborne particles resulting from flushing.”

Here’s a ‘did you know’ to shut up those folks who spend winter in the sun and brag about their tan, while you’re shoveling snow or dripping rain water on the just washed floor. Did you know that most dust particles in your house are made from dead skin?

Finally, a couplet for those obnoxious folks who insist on smoking around those who don’t just because they can legally do so.

You say, “I read an interesting article that at one time the three most valuable brands in the world were Marlboro, Coca Cola and Budweiser, in  that  order.”

Now that you have their attention, you say, “Of course, the first Marlboro Company owner, as well as the first Marlboro Man, both died of lung cancer, Budweiser was taken over by InBev and Coke is under attack for contributing to obesity.”

Amazing what a few facts and a little creativity can accomplish.

Flickr image credit: 101st CAB, Wings of Destiny

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