1. Cynglen
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    Cynglen Senior Member

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    Family Table Talk

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Cynglen, Dec 1, 2013.

    Hey Everyone,

    For those of us in America, Thanksgiving recently brought many families together for food, fun, and conversation. I love seeing my relatives, but (like many other families) the conversation always drifts into political discourse at some point in the day. A discussion of opposing views is all well and good, but I was relieved when we steered towards casual jokes, job stories, minor philosophizing, and otherwise less friction-prone topics.

    Now I'm curious. What are some non-political discussion topics other people have had with family (Thanksgiving or otherwise) that seem good ways to get everyone relaxed and just enjoying being around each other? Christmas is coming soon, and more family table talk will be needed!
     
  2. Andrae Smith
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    Andrae Smith Gone exploring... in the inner realm... Contributor

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    Well, my cousin and I talked for a few hours about movies and music and books. I think we talked about Thor a little bit and about the upcoming Hobbit and Star Wars. He also helped me with a bit of my writing. I asked him to listen to some of it then tell me what questions come to mind. He's got a very strong imagination so he asked a lot of things that really helped me think of the kind of details to add.
    My sister and I spent some time making a CD for my great-grandma and teacher her how to use her new CD player (she's 87). She was so cute because she kept asking why you put the CD face-down instead of face-up like a record.
     
  3. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Well, Doctor Who (and other science fiction series) tend to pop up. However, my mother starts to drift away when we do that, so the topic jumps to more inclusive topics like artistry (all of us dabble in the arts to some degree), wildlife we saw or heard during the day, target sports, foods and recipe ideas, the dog's latest antics, a few pun battles, how much we hate Black Friday, ...
     
  4. Andrae Smith
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    Andrae Smith Gone exploring... in the inner realm... Contributor

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    @Cogito, I take it you master the pun battles, right?
     
  5. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    My roomie has recently become utterly fascinated by Breaking Bad, and it's just about all he talks about these days. I've started watching the series (we got it on DVD, but I haven't seen it before) but I'm still in the first season and can't keep up with him.
     
  6. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    My son wins his share of them. We think very much alike.
     
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  7. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    we spent TG with my wife's sister's in-laws, my in-law's in-laws. How fucking boring. On my deathbed I will regret that day; hungover with the most boring people on the planet who's biggest contribution to conversation was "Who's for quirkle?"
     
  8. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Quirkle (noun) 1. Insane amounts of the sexiest sex with the sexiest people in the sexiest country on the sexiest planet in the sexiest galaxy in the whole sexy universe! Plus bacon!

    (I got that definition from a dictionary I make up myself whenever I don't understand a word but want to.)

    What's not to love?

    :)
     
  9. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    I way prefer to play your version of Quirkle!

    Unfortunately we had this silly board game aged 6+ :(
     
  10. Duchess-Yukine-Suoh
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    Duchess-Yukine-Suoh Girl #21 Contributor

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    I pity you, your wife, and all your kids for having to endure the torture that is Quirkle.
     
  11. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    My dad likes science stuff, so we talk about that once in a while. Since I don't see/talk to my parents/brothers that often, a lot of the conversation is of the "what's new with you?" variety. So just a bunch of small talk.
     
  12. Andrae Smith
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    Andrae Smith Gone exploring... in the inner realm... Contributor

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    I really hate small talk and "what's new with you" conversation... It's nice every once and a while, but it stops short of true bonding, in my opinion.
     
  13. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    "What's with you lately?"
    "Nothing... you?"
    "Nothing..."
    "Cool..."
    "Hey I saw a dead bird..."
    "Yeah?"
    "Yeah!"
    "How was it?"
    "Dead... just lying there and shit..."
    "Cool..."
     
  14. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    Blame my family. Haha. I'm always in the mood for a good discussion.

    @erebh, yup, that's pretty much how it goes.
     
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  15. Duchess-Yukine-Suoh
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    Duchess-Yukine-Suoh Girl #21 Contributor

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    This is why I can't stand it when the whole family gets together. I try to just go see my grandma when it's just her, my mom, and I and I ask her questions about her life. She has some good stories, i.e.:
    Me: "So, did Grandpa ever take you to Ireland?"
    Grandma: "Yes, and when we had to get laundry done over there we had to go to the laundromat, because it was a rural area and they only had a scrubboard. So, Mae, Mick, and I drove down the laundromat. It took us two hours to get there!"
    Me: "Two hours?"
    Grandma: "Mainly because we stopped at all the pubs along the way."
    Me: "Oh, I see."
     
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  16. Garball
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    Garball Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand. Supporter Contributor

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    Questions like these always come up around the dinner table:

    How could the invisible man see?
    If you can't travel faster than the speed of light, does light accelerate towards a black hole?
    Gary Larson or Bill Waterson?

    I like when it's cold enough to get a fire going in the pit. That's when the best conversations take place.
    "Good fire."
    "Yup."
    each takes a sip of their drink and stares blankly at fire
     
  17. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    You've got an awesome grandma. :)
     
  18. Andrae Smith
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    Andrae Smith Gone exploring... in the inner realm... Contributor

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    That's so cool! See, I love when My great grandma (Gram) get's together with either of her two remaining brothers (she had 6 siblings and one just passed earlier this year), because they always get into story war. This happens most with my Uncle Herbert:

    Herbert: Back in the day, I used to have these records, see. It was back way before CD's. And Lue would--
    Gram: Herbert! Don't you tell no fibs now.
    Herbert: Oh hush up Lue, and let me tell the story.
    Gram: (sassy black lady voice) Why? You don't get the stories straight no way.
    Herbert: What? Yes I do. I have a great memory.
    Gram: Oh there you go telling stories already. I remember when--
    Herbert: Hey hey hey, I was talkin', Lue. It's my story. Now you made me lose my place.
    Gram: (sarcastically) Sorry, Herbert.
    One of us: (to Herbert) You had these records before they were CD's...
    Herbert: Oh, right. I had these songs on records and Lue would borrow them. Then One day I loaned them to her and I never saw them again.
    Gram: Herbert, you know I didn't take your records. You loaned them to your brother, Bob. Remember?
    Herbert: (coyly) No I didn't. I wasn't talking to him.
    Gram: Herbert! you know ...
    ...
    ...
     
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2013
  19. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    Well, everyone in my family agrees politically, so we usually have a few minutes discussion about how crazy a lot of other people are.

    As far as actual discussion -- well, usually what comes up is how batshit crazy my in-laws (my husband's parents) are. Usually, it's them and my parents, and sometimes my brother. My parents stay over, but my inlaws just come around noon and leave around 6. They are out of touch with reality, and don't interact with that many people, partly because everyone thinks they're strange. So they bicker and my MIL will go over the same stories every year about how great my husband was as a little boy. After they leave, my mother will ask why my MIL has to re-state the same uninteresting non-stories year after year.

    This year, though, my inlaws backed out because my younger son had a cold. They're afraid of germs. So, when my parents and brother got here, we just talked about how idiotic, asinine and insane the inlaws are. Then there was some disgruntlement about the wine I selected. Otherwise, we sat around and had lots of wine and beer, and we had a lot of food.
     
  20. Alesia
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    Alesia Pen names: AJ Connor, Carey Connolly Contributor

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    This Thanksgiving we went to my GF's sisters house. Somehow I ended up sitting at the table housing all of the 70+ year old women (mind you I'm a 27 year old male) discussing cats, medication, arthritis, and where to get good bargains on health care costs.
     
  21. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Ugh. We never let discussions turn into "organ recitals", i.e. talking about aches and pains, and doctor visits, and dire outcomes.
     
  22. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    Normally when someone is telling a story I don't listen to a single word - instead I'm too busy practicing mine in my head and waiting for my turn. Does anybody else do this?
     
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  23. Garball
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    Garball Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand. Supporter Contributor

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    I'm just thinking, "Don't cuss. Don't cuss. Don't cuss."
     
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  24. maidahla
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    maidahla Active Member

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    Family is nice. Usually, they HAVE to love you. Friends are better. They CHOOSE to love you.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 21, 2014

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