How to Escape a Jaw Flapper

My family says it takes a good 20 minutes for me to leave:

  • A meeting
  • Church
  • Grocery Store
  • An empty parking lot

Hey!!! Can I help it, I’m too lazy to call someone for a luncheon or after-work  chat?  When I finally run into them in the toilet paper aisle of Box-Mart, I’m going to catch up on everything.

So here are some tips for ending a conversation with me or someone like me who’s flapping their jaws.

 How To Escape a Boring Conversation

STRATEGY 1: Make a positive ending comment.  This is the UNIVERSAL signal for wrapping up.

GOOD Example:

  • “I’m glad we talked.”
  • “You’ve given me some things to think about.”
  • “I enjoyed our conversation.”

BAD Example:

  • “Barb…isn’t that your husband…leaving the parking lot without you?”

STRATEGY 2: Review and Plan.  Again, this is another signal indicating you’ve heard the person and the conversation has come to a close.

  • GOOD Example:            “Thanks for letting me know the details. (The review of the conversation).  “I’ll get back to you and let you know.” (The plan.)
  • The Good Grief Example:  “Barb! My eyes are rolling in the sockets with all these details. (The review). Just e-mail me (so I can delete it as soon as I get it.) (The Plan)

STRATEGY 3:  The Excuse AND Reason.

You’re allegedly ending the conversation NOT because you want to run away, pulling your ears and screaming, but because you have something else that MUST be done.

The excuse and reason MUST be used together…you’ll see why in this bad example.

  • Poor Example:  “Hi. Well, gotta go.”  This response doesn’t work even though every teenager has tried to make to make it work. (And adding a wave, while walking away doesn’t make it any better.)
  • Better Example: “Sorry, Barb. Gotta go. I’m late for a meeting.”

HINT:  If you’re using the Excuse Strategy, at least make your reasons believable.

  • “I’ve got to wash the chickens.”
    • “Clean out the fridge before the milk expires.”  or
      • “I’m late for a meeting that we didn’t invite you to.”

Are not acceptable excuses. Put on your thinking cap or another mouth filter.

BONUS TIP:Smiley

Of course, the best time to escape is when there’s a lull in the conversation, but if you’re visiting with someone like me who can talk as I breathe both in and out, you’ll have to interrupt. I know you hate to do it.  But believe me, it’s quite helpful. I appreciate it every time I’m interrupted with:

Hurry, honey. I’ll slow down at the corner.

“Sorry, Barb. I’ve got to let you go.  Your husband is driving out of the parking lot.”

Photos: clock:sleepinyour hat, car:thirdculturejp
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About Barb

I escaped from a hardscrabble farm in Oklahoma. I'm not sure why people think I have an accent. I miss the sunshine, but not the fried foods.
This entry was posted in A Laugh, Change, Humor, Life, Satire and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

53 Responses to How to Escape a Jaw Flapper

  1. Silva Gang says:

    Absolutely hilarious Barb! It’s usually my husband who is the talker, so I start by giving him a gentle squeeze on the arm. 10 minutes later, it is more of a gorilla death grip, ha ha! By the way, people wash chickens… and that’s a viable excuse to use?! My God, all this time I could have been using that one! FYI- I’m literally clueless when it comes to farm animals. Does this chicken-washing process just involve water, or do people use soap? As you can tell, I am really intrigued by this. 😉

    Like

    • Barb says:

      OOOOOhhhh, the ol’ squeeze trick. Yeah, when I see the squeeze coming, I move out of arm’s reach, until I figured out it was my husband’s way of herding me toward the door.

      Like

  2. ah i have learned some new skills

    Like

  3. winsomebella says:

    I will remember these tips if my about-face beeline to aisle 14 does not work and I cannot escape the jaw flapper.

    Like

  4. Al says:

    This is exactly why I always carry mace with me.

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Uh…Al? Uh…do you carry Mace to spray someone who’s bothering you with talking, or is to spray your wife and make her quit talking?

      Like

      • Al says:

        Actually, I was kidding about the mace. I have a built in defense system. I’m hearing impaired. I have to ask people to repeat themselves so often that they cross the street when they see me coming. Who knew an affliction could come in handy?

        Like

  5. Judy says:

    I love this what a great blog you have. I am a follower now. cheers Judy 🙂
    judysp.wordpress.com

    Like

  6. 😀 Now picturing you hurtling after the car….thanks for the laugh this afternoon…

    Like

  7. I’ve memorised these tips, Barb. They may come in handy one day, thanks for the help!

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Hey Tom!! It’s good to see you.
      “Come in handy ONE DAY?” You’d better give me your phone number so I can call and you can practice or else I’m afraid you’ll forget this handy advice when you really really need it. How’s you calling plan?

      Like

  8. You crack me up! I hope I run into you in the toilet paper aisle sometime soon! Margie

    Like

  9. Elyse says:

    I’m sending this to everyone in my husband’s family. Because they NEVER know when to shut up. They continue talking when you leave the room. I used to be polite but gave up. They don’t realize I am being rude, so I don’t think I will roast in hell for doing it.

    Like

    • Barb says:

      You’ve gotta love folks who don’t take offense no matter what you do. Let’s experiment and step it up a notch. Start wearing noise-muffling headphones when you visit and tell us if they said you’d roast in hell for it.

      Like

  10. mj monaghan says:

    Such useful tips, Barb.

    Would love to stay and comment, but I think the dryer just stopped. hehehe

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Now that’s a real excuse. I’ll cut off anyone so I don’t have to iron clothes. This is an pre-accepted excuse like : Island Travelers:” Gotta Pick Up my Kid”, or Digispictography’s “Gotta Get Some Sleep, I Work Nights.”
      But you’ve got to worry that they’ll call back in 10 minutes when they think you’ve finished folding.

      Like

  11. El Guapo says:

    I would like to print this on a t-shirt and give it to several people I know to wear in public.

    Like

  12. Phil says:

    Hello, I must be leaving…

    Like

  13. In the cell phone lot at the airport recently, fully expecting the call was from the person telling me they had landed, a relentless talker was on the other end. “Oh no”, I actually said, “I can’t talk now.” Then I had to recover explaining, “I’m at the airport picking up x and I thought it was them! Gotta go. Can we pleeeease talk later? I’m waiting for THEIR call.” “Yes…but…you see…” Click.

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Good for you. Do you ever look at the incoming number and then decide not to answer it because you just don’t have time to get into a looooong conversation. Whoever invented voice mail is my friend. Hey!!!! Maybe that’s why I get put on voice mail so much???

      Like

  14. digipicsphotography says:

    You are too funny!
    I just say I have to get some sleep to work tonite. Works well for me, since I do work at nite. 🙂

    Like

    • Barb says:

      I work at night too. Yeeeeeeah. Yeeeeah, (scratching chin and thinking) that could work for me. I usually write until about 2am. (but no one considers that work),

      Like

      • digipicsphotography says:

        That’s because they are sleeping and don’t see you working. Both of my sons never understood why I couldn’t stay awake all day after working all night. They slept while I worked. It wasn’t until they both got jobs requiring them to work odd, late hours that they finally understood.

        Like

  15. Thanks Barb. It is kind of hard to end a conversation particularly the if the other party doesn’t seem want to stop. Great tips indeed. One of my excuses? I sometimes say, “Oh, gotta go, I still have to pick up my son !” Works everytime.

    Like

  16. I had an acquaintance once who was a strenuous talker and so oblivious to input that I’d try the reason gambit and make it as silly as possible, because bless her heart, she never noticed. “I’d love to stay and chat, but I have to polish the dog.” Or, “I’m on fire.” Or, “let’s do this again when you’re not so annoying.” Ha ha! she’d say, and then motor right on. It was kind of fun, actually.

    Like

  17. momaescriva says:

    I guess it’s time to end the conversation when you’re backed against the wall and have fallen asleep.

    Like

  18. dorannrule says:

    This is so funny – and so true, but sorry, “Gotta go before the ice cream melts!” 🙂

    Like

  19. dan says:

    I usually say “Hey! I think I just saw your son/daughter getting a tattoo by a biker in the bar on second street.”

    Like

  20. My husband and I are amateur radio operators, and go to a lot of meetings. No matter how long the meetings may run, it is absolutely imperative for a bunch of us to hold an after-the-meeting meeting in the parking lot afterwards. (Sometimes, they even last longer than the actual meetings do!) Ditto when we’re visiting with friends. Whether it’s at our house or theirs, there always has to be a lengthy obligatory good-bye chat while standing in the living room, preparing to depart. At times, it spills out onto the porch and/or the driveway. So, I know just what you mean. Too funny.

    Like

    • Barb says:

      You’re my kinda woman. Following people out on the porch and to their cars is one of my favorite gabbing techniques. And outside, I can keep an eye out for my husband driving out of the parking lot.

      Like

  21. Roxie Matthews says:

    Geeze, and I have trouble getting to talk to you at all. How about I set up coffee date for us? I love to talk with you!

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Oh, yes. Let’s meet at the grocery store where we can block the aisles and let people walk around us. We’ll learn some new cuss words that way. (Yes, Roxie. Let’s talk).

      Like

  22. Jon says:

    These are great tips! Minnesotans take forever to say goodbye and I think some of the bad examples might be appropriate under certain conditions. Is nodding off acceptable?

    Like

  23. katecrimmins says:

    Reminds me of my former in-laws! We would be at a family gathering for 4 or 5 hours. As soon as we said we were leaving, they started saying all the things they wanted to tell us but didn’t in the previous hours. I always told my ex to announce that we were leaving as soon as we got there. He didn’t see any humor in that (and perhaps that’s why he’s my ex!) Also, I have to wash my hair was always a good excuse when I was in high school. It wasn’t very subtle but kids aren’t.

    Like

  24. ansuyo says:

    Hilarious! I so appreciate the advice because I am not a talker and have a hard time drawing those lines. I’ve learned to stop responding. That works with some people. I have one friend who would just keep going, so a needed bathroom trip or something like comes in handy when I’m ready for a change. 😀

    Like

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