A Case for Small Talk

How do you approach someone? Anyone? Who wants to be approached, who wants to talk? If you begin to talk: a hello, a hi. More relaxed: a hey, hey how have you been? Insert the weather. It’s raining here. Yes, I’m here too.

Sometimes people will scold the rain. Tell the rain off because your clothes will get wet. You got to stand for eight hours at work in wet clothes. Yea it’ll dry, but it’ll dry on you. Nothing more uncomfortable than clothes drying on your body. Cold rain or warm rain. You’re going to work inside where there’s air conditioner blasting away. You’ll get sick.

Back to the weather. This conversation. When you approach someone, anyone. Overcast. It’s cloudy. But no one talks about the sadness that visits them sometimes. It’s fine you say. I’m fine. I’m good, could be worse– an attempt at some honesty. Neither good nor bad because it could be worse. If honesty can be worn all day on the face, what would it look like? On women, when they’re really honest, when we’re really honest, it looks ugly. No smile. No sense of expression. Just the weight of having to perform so much, shown when we don’t want to carry anything anymore. You got to carry the carefree as if your life depended on it. You can’t be too passionate- it’s desperate. They only want desperation when you’re on your knees, mouth open, fingers and anything phallic in, like you’re some hole ready to be filled with the burdens men carry, calling them seeds as a way to deflect the fact that they could care less for living. Only caring if it meant that they can hold the reigns to a woman, to an animal, an extension to the truth that they’re born just like everyone else and nothing will ever make them special or apart. But they do sure try to wrangle anything to hide that and call the thing on the leash a monster to be tamed, trained, and disposed of when no longer useful.

But anyways, the state of things. Emotions. Greetings. The weather. And then lying about how we really are. Approaching someone without revealing the ugliness of the world as it is. We despise small talk but can’t be asked to reveal the truth of ourselves. How can you hate the question and the answer, when you can barely look in the mirror and accept yourself as you are? Always putting on something to disguise the impotence of your person. Always flanking yourself with others to hide the glaring loneliness in your eyes. But God forbid someone knocks on your door to ask you, how you been?

Awkward interactions. We chalk them up to curses from the rude people who couldn’t psychically read your mind- you were just having a bad day. So, how you been lately? The rain is running down the streets. It fell and fell. Soaking the pant suits, the flip flops slopping it about, your toes holding tight as you walk fast to shelter your summer dressings, the hair all puffed up or slicked down. No one can read your mind. The brick by brick; the fine by okay, I’m fine and okay, laid on top of each other creating a barrier. Yet the yearning for some magical, cosmical person to melt them down is staining your heart red. Red turns to anger, turns to hate, turns to love, and just plain fire in the end. You don’t want to be lit up. You don’t want to be struck down. You conclude- you just want to be. Because being becomes easier to bare than baring all the muck on your soul, plastered on by the disappointing interactions that you record unconsciously, letting it repeat until you’re blue in the face. Blue is sadness, and you’re blue all over. So how you really been? all fine? all okay? How about we start with a hello? a hi? a more casual hey? The sun is still hiding. The rain is just a shower and your heart seems non-existent today. Just a drummer pumping the red blood around your sack of flesh, the bones hurting from the weight of standing too still sometimes.

Enter changes. Locked up space in the lessons you run your fingers over and over again. What’s her name again? You can’t remember, but the way her lips felt on yours- that will forever be its own subject in your book, no? A chapter is the way she puts on her clothes after she fucks you. And the bookmark is you wondering whether you’d be good enough for anyone at all and when will that happen? The whole comedy is you sitting on the toilet looking at yourself wondering if you’re even real. The tragedy is the look of someone looking at you while you’re figuring it all out. The romance is the dark corners blaring out lost lyrics to different songs you can never forget. What’s his name? A shirt you keep. Socks you wear sometimes, and woman don’t it feel like a tragedy when he looks the other way when your face smiles too wide? How we forget ourselves in the moments?  You need the small talk, like walls to a cage we built for some kind of safety from God knows what. God knows way more than you and thank the heavens for that. Thank the angels for creating the barriers you need to heal. Insisting in the casual hey and the weather, my goodness when will it stop raining, we will definitely get sick.

We need the small talk ladies and gentlemen of the jury. We need to realize that we hide the little monsters even from ourselves, so why do we insist for everyone to lay them all out on the table in passing? You know that person is just logging information like NSA ready to divulge it to the next casual encounter, to some other person who logs it in, to be told to another acquaintance who will probably agree that you’re a boring fuck that does nothing with their life. But aren’t we all just boring fucks trying to do something with our lives? The desperation to live as the though the camera is always on is something akin to a tragic comedy. The tears in the eyes falling like rain while the mouth laughs. Continue please. The face desperate to keep living because what else can we do?

Wrap it up fuckers. The long-winded ones. The ones ready to let you know every single fucking detail that goes on in their lives. Not only theirs but others too. But how else are we to know what’s going on? The blaring horns of information to let us know we are not that sad and ridiculous all alone, we got the company of others to thank. Maybe, it may even make us feel a little normal. But hey, the rain is beautiful the way it washes away the piss on the street and temporarily lifts the stench of garbage and even provides a little hope that yes, I cried last night because I’m too poor to live like the camera is always on and I’m permanently hiding behind the I’m okay and I’m fine but either way, how have you been?