Anyone who blogs, can tell you that the themes of the blog are generally centered around things that irk the spit out of the blogger. I like to mix it up a bit, with encouragement, funny stories, current events, etc. However, I have opted to be ordinary today, and talk about something that is burning me a little bit, and in an effort not to physically hurt someone, blog about it. I'm sure everyone remembers the Dave Chappelle skit about the Habitual Linestepper. Many of us have encountered such people, and call many of them friends. The girl in your crew that always seems to get caught in the bathroom with someone's boyfriend at a party; the friend that no matter how many times you mark the point of no return in their night of drinking, still can't seem to stay two drinks away from that mark; the friend that walks in your house, goes directly to your fridge and turns your milk carton up to their mouth, empties it, and then puts it back in; or even the relative that calls at 7am Saturday morning, asks if you're asleep, and immediately starts talking about nonsense (isn't everything nonsense at 7am on Saturday morning?). While all of these would easily serve as a comical blog entry, I'd like to identify a subsector of the Habitual Linesteppers; a group that can easily be missed if you don't pay attention...The Habitual Circle Talker.
I got the idea for this blog from events that have been unfolding in my life over the past few weeks. It all came to a head yesterday, when my BFF and I were watching Ellen, and she was interviewing one of the contestants for the upcoming Miss California Pageant. Ellen asked the girl how she planned to win the pageant. The girl started her answer by saying, "It's such an honor to even participate in the Miss California Pageant...it's been a dream of mine since I was a very young girl. It's so important to consider...blah blah blah". Ok, *is this thing on?* Did you even hear the question? The reason I inserted the blah's is because that's the only part of her answer I remember...I stopped listening, and only paid attention to the show again, when Jam said, "She didn't answer the question!". Excuse me, Little Miss "I want to be Miss California", you're a Habitual Circle Talker.
One person in particular, with whom I've been forced to communicate on a regular basis, has mastered this art. Should write a book really. For a while, I hadn't actually been paying attention to anything she said, so it didn't really matter. She'd send a painfully long email or text message, or go on and on in a phone conversation, and you know how, you'll throw filler questions out to people just so they think you're into what they're saying? For the longest, this is how my interaction with this person has gone. Only recently, have I been interested, or invested in what comes spewing out of the whole in her face, and am now becoming increasingly fed up with the lack of respect for my intelligence. Because when it all comes down to it, that's what it really is, right? These people have mastered the art of talking in a circle to disguise the fact that they don't really have anything of substance to say. They've done so much work in putting on the facade that would make them appear knowledgeable, or able to play this "part", but they're a fraud, which is why, when put in a position where questions have to be answered, or input is required, they resort to talking in a circle, and can only hope that 1. You're so dumb that you buy it, 2. You aren't really paying attention anyway, 3. They talked in SUCH a circle that you can't remember what they're even talking about, or 3. By some divine intervention, you're able to put the foolishness together in a way that remotely makes sense, or at least ponder it long enough to give them time to come up with a better story.
I think the part that burns me up the most, is that the easiest way to disguise the fact that you don't have anything of substance to say, is just to shut up. It's a novel idea...almost so simple that it HAS to work. It's almost amusing to watch a habitual circle talker at work. At some point during the conversation (I use this term loosely, as most cases are just one sided, because no intelligent person can participate in an actual conversation with a circle talker without exposing them) you can almost see their eyes glaze over, and a look come across their face that says "I don't really know what I'm talking about, but I was way too deep in this conversation by the time I realized it, and can't back out now."
Everyone is guilty of talking in a circle at least on occasion. Most times it happens like this...you start a normal conversation, and realize that you aren't being well received at all, or you're being misunderstood, and instead of just shutting up and regrouping, you kind of take a roundabout route to get back on track. That whole time you were trying to get back on track...you were talking in a circle, and I promise, you'll be hard pressed to remember anything you said on that detour. Don't feel bad, it's normal...we all do it...I did it the other day. This, a habitual circle talker, does not make.
It's easy to identify habitual circle talkers, and even easier to expose them, once identified. Anyone, colleague, friend, classmate, whoever, that is incapable of sending a two line email, is almost always a habitual circle talker. The person who can't ever seem to get their thoughts in the 160 characters allotted for text messages, is probably a habitual circle talker. The person that never answers a yes or no question with a yes or no...habitual circle talker. The person that always says things like, "so much is going on", or "the response has been crazy", or "I'm working on a ton of stuff", or anything general like that, but can never provide a list of tasks embarked upon, with the result of each...is probably a habitual circle talker, and probably doesn't really have too much of anything going on. If you aren't amused in the least by this post, YOU are a habitual circle talker, and for the love of God, and the fear of being exposed as a fraud, please shut up until you have something to say that someone wants to hear.