Now that you are at college, you may have noticed that there is a whole new level of socialization that happens (or that is expected) here. You are not ‘in the real world’ yet, but you are not in the sheltered bosom of familial Suburbia anymore. You are going to be meeting the kinds of people that you would have never met in your enclave at high school. So, it’s time to up your game when it comes to conversing and socializing; and there is no place better to start than with ‘what not to say.’
- “Do these stairs go up?” – Personally, this is the dumbest question I ever heard. Do you really think that (somehow) stairs are one-way? They are not an escalator or a conveyor belt, they are a set of stairs, and you are in charge of the rest.
- “What did you say, I wasn’t listening?” Okay, if you don’t yet have your fake nod n’ smile down pat yet, it’s time to practice. Even if you are cornered by the dullest bore in the room, we are living in civilization and there is no need for blatant rudeness – that is why the fake nod n’ smile was invented in the first place.
- “Would you like a drink? I found it in the bathroom!” If you are cheap, have no self-respect or are so drunk that you don’t know what to say then maybe you need to stay away from the party scene for a while. Sure we’ve all grabbed that drink that was left behind by God-knows-who, but we were fourteen when we did.
- “Your friend is hot!” Geez thanks Pal, so what does that make me, chopped liver? You like my friend, huh? Well then be nice to me. Not flirty or sweaty, just kind and social and respectful. Maybe I’ll even introduce you to her because I think you’re okay…
- “You’re sleeping with WHO?!” First, we need to ask that you stop shouting. There is no need to broadcast anything at a party save, “Taxi’s here” or maybe “Uh, everybody might want to use the other loo.” At least try to act worldly and cool even if you aren’t. Besides, you may not see the attraction, but it’s impossible to know who will be attracted to whom.
- “This party is kinda lame, why didn’t you invite more people?” Chances are good that a lot of people were invited. People don’t usually go to the trouble of throwing a party to have only a few faces show. Maybe people are late or at another party or don’t especially like the host. Either way, zip it and be a polite guest until you can excuse yourself and move on.
- Finally, it’s time to ditch catch-phrases of your youth: “No way, my bad, whatev, as if…“can be substituted for growed-up words that are bigger, better and more suited to your new life.