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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Small talk

On the second day in my CONVERSATION CLASS level 3, my students and I were talking about SMALL TALK, what kind of topic people talk about, especially when it is their first time meeting each other. As everybody knows, the topic is very various, and it definitely depends on the situation, place, and time.
When I elicited what kind of situation, a new student said, “Wedding parties …”
I wrote it on the whiteboard, then elicited again, “When you are in wedding parties, what do you talk about when you meet a new person?”
The same student answered, “Status Miss …”
I was stunned. I was never in such a situation, being in a wedding party, talking to a stranger, then being asked, “Are you single? Or are you married?” or asking someone else, a stranger, the same question.
I was a bit doubtful to write ‘marital status’ next to situation ‘wedding parties’ at first. But then I remembered one intriguing character in the movie ‘PS I love you’, Denise.
“Have you guys watched PS I LOVE YOU?”
Two or three girls raised their hands. However they did not remember Denise. (Perhaps because they watched it long time ago, while I just watched it a couple of weeks ago and I was intrigued by Denise.) So then I practiced.
I asked one male student in my class, “Are you single?”
He seemed confused to answer. Perhaps he has a girlfriend already. LOL.
I went to another male student, “Are you single?” he convincingly answered, “Yes Miss.”
Then I asked him again, “Are you gay?”
He frowned, then answered, a bit offended or confused, LOL, “No Miss …”
Apparently he did not watch PS I LOVE YOU. LOL.
The following question (in the movie) was, “Are you working?”

After Denise got satisfying answer, “Yes,” “No,” and “Yes”, she would confidently kissed the guy’s lips. After some time, she would stop the kiss. If she thought the kiss was just so so, not yummy at all, LOL, she would say, “oh not nice. Bye …” leaving the guy dumbfounded. LOL.
“Is it possible to practice it in Indonesia, especially in Semarang?” I asked my students. Instead of answering my question, they just laughed.
“Wish I could do that here though.” I said. LOL.
Oh well, my experience so far, I never attended wedding parties all alone, and I usually would just talk to the ones who accompanied me—Angie, sisters, or workmates.
“What other topic do people talk about in wedding parties?” I continued eliciting.
“The bride and the groom, Miss…” someone proposed.
“Good … what do you people talk about the bride and the groom?” I asked.
No one gave me an interesting answer.
“Well, I remember in one wedding party of a friend. She was in her middle thirties when she got married, and her husband luckily or coincidentally was nine years younger than she was. It is up to you whether you consider it lucky or unlucky or just so so.” I said to my students.
“In the party, I overheard people talk about the age gap between the bride and the groom, such as, ‘wah, kok nganten lanange isih kinyis-kinyis ngono?” LOL. (Wow, the groom looks so young and fresh!")
The following question possible asked to a stranger was, “Are you a friend of the bride or the groom?”
“How about if the stranger answered honestly, “None of them…” I asked.
“How come Miss?” one student asked.
“Well, a smuggler you know, just a passerby wanted to eat for free.” LOL.
There were some other situation and interesting topics. However, I have to prepare myself to go to the office now.
PT56 08.05 180409

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