Saturday, August 25, 2012

She was boring.

My friend said this to me recently, talking about someone she'd recently broken bread with.

I knew the woman she was talking about and I agree, she's rather vanilla, although the thought hadn't occurred to me until she mentioned it.

What makes someone not boring? Interesting hobbies? Engaging stories? Humor? A visible passion for something, anything?

I used to work with a woman who was pee-in-your-pants funny. She was completely and unapologetically selfish and her observations were often spot-on but things you'd never say out loud if your parents raised you with any sense of decency. She was not boring in the slightest.

As an aside, I'm beginning to think you are either born with the humor gene or not. My dad and cousin David are funny, and they have the same sense of one-line humor. One of The Pinks says the funniest things.

One of my fairly new friends has an interesting backstory. Actually a bunch of my friends do. They're not Americans. They've lived outside the US. They've traveled to unusual places and will eat weird food without a second thought. Or they grew up in non-traditional families or have overcome tough odds to land on their feet. Dave tells me that none of my friends are alike. Maybe I am bored with people like myself?

I love the picture above, taken at our house Thanksgiving 2009. I am thankful for friends and family. And the people in this picture are all interesting. There are as many non-Americans as there are Americans. Dave and I like hosting an eclectic Thanksgiving -- the more the merrier.

Thing 1 tells me that she likes living in a small town because it's friendly and you often see people you know. I'd much prefer the diversity, the anonymity, of a large city.

In business and in social situations, it seems that unboring people are good storytellers. Jim is an amazing storyteller. You can visualize the people in his stories and he is dang funny. I think back to his stories days later. I wonder if Jim tells stories at work, too.

My CEO is a good storyteller. He comes up with clever lines and memorable quips during every conversation we have. Is this a common thread binding serial entrepreneurs?

Dave is naturally on, a natural people person. When we go out and I'm not in the mood I remind myself that I need to be on, that if I accept a social invitation it's my responsibility to bring it.



Anonymous said...

Agreed Leslie. People need to bring their "A" game when social. It amazes me that folks take the time (babysitters, prepping, driving) to plan an outing with friends but don't go the extra mile to tell a funny story or two. Sad really.

I have been reading your blog lately and quite enjoy your entries.

A fan in Austin,
Kelsey (friends with Sara)

Paige said...

Naturally, I agree with you. I would LOVE to live in the city but obviously we have a thing about schools. I do feel like the 'burbs give us more time/opportunities to get to know people somewhat different than us. Hanging out at a long field trip or an entire soccer season will allow you to get to know any of those other parents really well! They may be same socio-economic background NOW, but a lot have so many good stories/traditions that they come from, just like your Thanksgiving table.

I loved your sitting Shiva post. What a fantastic tradition.