Home > Communication, Dating and Relationships, Discover People, Goto New York, Networking > Can we just have a normal conversation?

Can we just have a normal conversation?

A few days ago I updated my facebook status to “Sometimes I don’t understand why people just can’t carry on some normal conversation”, and I got the following comments from my lovely friends: 

  • Because normal conversation is boring. (Really? Why I thought this is the best and ONLY way to really get to know anybody at all?)
  • How normal are you talking about, define normal? (Right, nowadays everyone needs a definition to be on the same page about almost everything)
  • I don’t know what a normal conversation is. I just can’t comprehend! (Knowing the person who wrote this, that totally makes sense! Kidding, I like people who can make fun of themselves. Not being too serious about yourself is the only way you can be serious about WHAT YOU DO)
  • Because there is a shadow in everybody’s mind. Or they are just not that into you (Good point, and probably true)

But since when do you need to be into someone at all to simply start a conversation? Is this really about the post-dating age where attraction is not identified by being asked on a dinner + movie date, but hided in multiple incidents of “do you want to come along to this happy hour thing?” or “my friend is having a birthday you’re welcome to join?”

Yes. We are busy. We weigh our options. We don’t want to act like desperate. We have a real life to worry about. We want some fun company but not endless drama. So we are not in a hurry to get into a relationship, so we take it slow, and we thought we are subtle.  

But wait, why am I talking about dating here? I am supposed to be talking about two people, regardless of gender, having a simple, honest, and direct conversation!

Then I realized the idea of finding a potential date is probably one of the primary drivers for some people to go to social events at all. I can’t blame that because we are human. But sometimes I can’t stop but wonder: is this really all you want to do?

Life is like a circle. You are young and poor, you go on to the beach and smoke some cigar. Or you’re young and hardworking with a super demanding job and you’re making big bucks. Then one day when you get old and retire and have tons of money, you go on to the beach and smoke some cigar. Oh why do you have to go through all the trouble to go back to exactly where you have started off? But again, this is life.

New York is an interesting place because it gives you tons of opportunities to observe how other people behave every single day. At all these social events, you see those who seems to be familiar with everyone but you know they have absolutely no friends; you encounter the awkwardness that someone will ask for your business card before even introducing himself; you see those who used to be so proud and energetic working in finance but after they got laid off during the financial crisis they simply totally lost their morale and basically disappeared from the social scene; and you see those who are happy living in Brooklyn, being a freelancer, and dancing like a queen.

The truth is: you can’t have a million friends and not a few enemies. And if you are one of us, no matter what you do, you are never going to be the richest guy in the world; and no matter how hard you work out or how much skincare or makeup you put on yourself, you are never going to be the cutest guy/girl in the world. There WILL BE someone better, in probably every sense, some where.

But so what?

Be normal, have some real interest, develop some real friends, and engage in some good conversations.

And this is what I mean by “normal”: simply live your life.


  1. lucky
    November 14, 2010 at 6:19 pm

    Dear Danye,
    It is an enriching experience to read your blogs both in English and Chinese!I started to follow your blog after you posted 给,还没有毕业的你们 on cuus. I am currently a sophomore in mt. holyoke college, and reading your blog kind of gives me a peek into the world outside the college bubble. I also started learning Japanese since middle school :D, in Shenzhen.
    I am very interested in finance, especially investment. Do you have any advice for college students as to how to prepare oneself for the interviews and job responsibitlies as an analyst in asset management firms? Thank you very much!
    Enjoy every day in NYC!

    • November 15, 2010 at 7:12 pm

      Thanks Lucky I’m glad you enjoyed reading my blogs. If you don’t mind digging through a little bit further into the “career advancement” or “job hunting” or “asset management” columns of my blog, I am sure you will find some interesting ideas.

  1. February 16, 2011 at 9:50 pm

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