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There is something daring in seeking out an exchange with someone, especially a stranger.
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Rather, the French frequently enjoy pretending that they don’t like their jobs. “They will be offended, believing you’re trying to put them into a box,” Barlow, a French-Canadian, tells Quartz.
“And they just don’t think it’s interesting to work for a living.
And, of course, those weak ties to someone who’s vacationing at the same place as you may organically stretch into a lifelong friendship.
One final tip: If you tend to be neurotic when talking to people, and anxious about what they might think of you, recognize that your concern might paradoxically make you a jerk.
It’s one of many customs in which American cultural norms deviate from those of the UK and Europe.
In most places in the world, asking a stranger what kind of work he or she does, especially without any pretext, is frowned upon. ” is finally becoming a tainted question in North America, too.
However, the typical French openers that may translate with more ease are things like, “Which part of the country are you from? ” which, in France, could imply you are not French, Barlow explains.
That could be a danger in the US, too, where immigration and citizenship have become fiercely debated topics.) Relatedly, any questions about geography or the food in a person’s hometown or region tend to get people chatting.
As an alternative, one of the easiest routes into a conversation may be to remark on a shared experience—yes, you can have these with a stranger; think of the weather, or the spread on offer at a party.
Post Senning suggests an ice breaker like, “Looks like it’s about to rain” or “This food looks delicious.” But these mini-commentaries don’t always have to be that mundane.
Consider what the writer Jennifer Latson learned about herself while doing research for a recent book.