Tuesday, January 13, 2015

                                                              The Chatterbox


     It may be an old concept, an old word, but it is alive and well and living in every social circle. I would love to tell you this term may be applied to men as well as women, and, yes, I have witnessed a few of the male species who qualify, but I’m sorry to say, that women are the reigning queens of chatter. 

     My personal definition of “chatterbox” is a person who talks non-stop, usually at a very quick pace sans breathing. Often the person will look you right in the eye, unafraid of your disapproving facial expression or weary body language. The person is so totally engrossed in her own story that your reaction or comprehension never occurs to her. She is on a roll, and nothing will stop her. If you are fortunate, her monologue might be of interest; however, generally, it is stream of consciousness drivel.

      In case you have never encountered such a person, here is a brief example of how it might go:

     “The other day, I ran into this friend of mine whom I met several years ago at a Tupperware Party--you know those home parties where people buy plastic containers--youknowthekindyouputleftoversandsuchinwellshewastellingmeaboutafriendofhersthatwentononeofthoserivercruiseslastsummeror,no,itwasthesummerbefore. . . “ blah, blah, blah.
   
     Normally, the monologue begins with a story about someone you’ve never heard of and won’t ever know and could care less about. It then snakes into stories of that person’s friends whom even she doesn’t know and weaves in and out of peoples’ stories that you couldn’t possibly be interested in. The pace gathers speed as the story unfolds, and you realize that you may have to call EMS because she may begin hyperventilating any second. Actually, you are almost hyperventilating yourself trying to keep up with her tale while you try to decide whether “Polite” is a quality you no longer embrace.

    By the time she might sneak a little oxygen, you’re so exhausted listening that even if you had something to say, you feel like you couldn’t keep up the pace she has set, and you assume she would only grasp what you are saying if it was in her own time signature. After attempting to follow her boring diatribe, you very quickly realize that she would not understand or be able to relate on any level to anything substantive you have to say anyway. So you withdraw.

    Do you know any of these people? Is there a planet we could send them to?