I am lazy when it comes to nurturing small talks here and there but because I have a thing for conversations, and in Nigeria, small talk precedes the kind of conversations that leaves you full of knowledge, the kind that has the inherent power to tweak your life I have to endure.
As an impatient conversationalist always wanting to get straight to the point, I have learnt the value of pacing. People are different and while some have a knack for just getting the convo going immediately, some others like to be prepared. Talking to them is like eating. You don’t want to rush them lest they choke.
I have learnt to calm my nerves down and go through the motions. The appetizer phase which usually involves the ritual of asking breezy questions just to prepare the atmosphere for the weight of the depth that will come afterwards.
I also have a thing for open-mindedness. In Nigeria, the best way to spot this trait in people is to initiate a conversation about sex . Nigeria generally has a culture that discourages openness of many sorts especially about sex. We have sex but we do not acknowledge it in our conversations. We just are defensive and blehh when it comes to discussions around sex and sexuality.
Knowing this, ‘Are you sexually active? ‘ is my trick question for friends to be. I am not nearly as interested in the answer as I am in the reaction that precedes the answer. I like to use that question as a friendship disclaimer. If I can get you to answer that question without getting you off guard, then I know you can take me in.
At times, I do an inward backflip or tap dance when I get a positive reaction.
I want to think that this- not being prudish, is a part of being weird but something tells me it is not.
There are people like me out there, lone voices who can relate to this and are reading and assenting.