I went to an ADD* Dinner Party the other night. I am not sure if that was the theme of the party or the criteria for the guest list but I was not informed of the nature of the evening ahead of time. I had to learn that myself. This is not the first time I have attended such an event in San Miguel but it was the first time I classified it as an ADD Dinner Party.
I knew something was different when everyone started talking at the same time. It felt like seven Tennis Ball Servers all firing at the same time. Let’s push the metaphor. The Tennis Balls in the server represent ADD Conversation Tidbits. These are bites of conversation, preloaded and tested at other ADD Dinner Parties. That are lobbed either at you or just into the room. The long tube represents the mouth of the dinner party guest. It can rotate. It can be speeded up or slowed down. The Tennis Ball Servers starts the minute Guest walks in the door.
This is merely a sampling of ADD Conversation Tidbits. Each one is lobbed at you and you only have 1 second to return it. It took a while to realize that you actually didn’t have to return it as a few seconds later the next ADD Conversation Tidbit was coming your way. I was totally unprepared because I didn’t come with a server and I was not interested in any of the ADD Conversation Tidbits. So I just started to dodge them. It didn’t take long for the ADD Guests to realize I wasn’t a player. So they lobbed them elsewhere. I just sat and watched the game.
I started to make list of the signs you are at an ADD Dinner Party
- interrupting – never let anyone fully respond
- talking too much – this is a setting on the server to increase speed
- talking too fast
- going off track – new lob
- not maintaining balance in relationships -lobbing from guest to guest
- impulsively blurting out words that would be better left unsaid. This really describes everything that was said.
- inappropriate body language.
You begin by asking a question to the guest on your right. When they answer, wait 2 seconds and then turn to the person on the left and ask another question.
Guest 1 to Guest 2: Did you enjoy Turkey?
Guest 2: Yes we had a great time in Turkey.
Guest 1 to Guest 3: What is in this soup?
Guest 2 to Guest 3: Hello I am Helen.
Guest 1 to Guest 4: How is your dog?
Guest 4: My dog is not doing well.
Guest 1 to Hostess: I love that new painting you have?
Hostess: Thanks I bought it at that gallery on….
Guest 3: Who went to Turkey?
Guest 2: Hey is that a new ring you are wearing where did you get it.
Summary Guest 2 went to Turkey but had no chance to talk about the trip or any observation. Guest 1 knew Guest 2 went to Turkey but really wanted to talk about the recipe for the Soup. Guest 4 wanted to talk about their pet who was sick but had their Tennis Ball Server set to low. Guest 2 gave up talking about Turkey and decide to try an Accessory Tidbit.
Nothing gets finished. Nothing gets said. There is no conversation thread. You leave with ADD Conversation Tidbits dents all over your psyche.
* ADD = Attention Deficit Disorder