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05 March, 2010

Sick and knowing someone

Yer that's me right now. Fighting off a cold. Not the "Ted Bundy" kinda sick but it's stopped me from feeling like doing things like blogging, tidying and well everything outside of just sitting and eating bagfuls of Cadbury Mini-eggs.

Anyway, I thought I'd throw in another blog post about social skills because I'm fascinated by them and I'm one of those guys that won't just do something the same way over and over again just because it's always been done that way and so I like to examine why us humanoids do things the way we do, over and over again.

Today I'm intrigued by the concept of knowing another person. Not in the biblical sense, mind you, before those of you in the back of the room start snickering. I mean how much should you really know someone else? When it comes to partners we are basically expected to know everything. Where they grew up, who there idol is, what is the favourite type of ice-cream etc.. and in this situation knowing these things and remembering them doesn't freak them out. In fact it comforts and sometimes impresses them.

But let's say you meet a new person. They tell you a couple of things about themselves and then 3 months later you meet again. You say something like "Oh, and how is your dog doing now? And have you finished that class you were taking? Did you end up going to see Avatar in the end?" and you have probably weirded them out.

Those "rules" are pretty simple to follow. Where the line blurs is with friends who you are close to. I think this is probably more true for guys..when talking to both guy friends and female friends. If I suddenly told my friend Geoff I remember his shoe size, ice cream flavour and first pet name I'm certainly heading into weirded out territory. Equally I'm probably getting a restraining order against me if I approached a female friend and recalled what dress she wore to the prom and what the colour of her toothbrush is without the topic of conversation being about either of these things.

So, how much should you really know about a friend (and more importantly admit to remembering)? I think I can stick to these guidelines:

1) It depends on the friend
2) It depends what you know
3) If they ain't talking about it, don't bring it up.
4) Don't ask, don't tell.


Paige said...

I think it depends, definitely. But I also don't bring it up unless needed. I have a weird memory. I can remember some exact details while I may not remember how I got to work that morning. So I am very aware that if I were to say to someone, "Oh come one... you remember... you were wearing that blue shirt and we were walking to lunch and you were afraid it would rain so you had your umbrella," that I would get the crazy look.

The Film Geek said...

Terrific post.

I'm fairly hyper-observant so, like Paige, I notice lots of things. If I talked about things I noted, I'd come across more like a serial killer than I already do!