Are you going to a New Year’s Eve Party this year? Are you worried about the uncomfortable silence that might surround you when faced with a gaggle of unfamiliar party goers? Never fear – I subscribe to The Economist and despite it’s academic sounding title it’s always chock a block full of trivia. More importantly, trivia you can use to break the ice at a party on Saturday.
Here’s the recipe for instant conversation.
- Pour yourself an alcoholic drink.
- Engage in conversation with someone who is also drinking an adult beverage. (This will help if the following steps are less than successful.)
- Bring up any topic you find interesting from the following two lists of new laws going into effect next year. Start with the ever popular, “Did you know….”
- California is banning the production of foie gras.
- Bullfighting is being outlawed in the Spanish region of Catalonia.
- The EU is banning traditional battery cages for egg laying hens.
- Sweden will outlaw bestiality.
- Retailers in England will have to keep tobacco products out of sight.
- All cigarettes sold in Australia will have to be sold in “drab, dark brown” packaging.
- Russia will ban tobacco advertising.
- The Dutch will prohibit tourists from buying marijuana.
These little morsels of trivia should get the conversation going. Don’t worry if you don’t know any more than just this one fact. Let your new friend do most of the talking; they’ll later think you were really interesting. If one of these doesn’t catch fire then start again at the top of the recipe with more drinking.
(Source: The Economist, The World in 2012, “Next year, don’t” by Leo Mirani.)