Or maybe it’s just a one-track mind…
I don’t like small talk. I don’t really talk about the weather. I don’t like talking about work. I don’t enjoy family dinners where I have to recap what I’ve been up to over and over again.
Generally, I concentrate my time and energy into a few good friendships, and a few close familial relationships. I hang around people who are like me. I like beer, the outdoors, music, reading and my family–not necessarily in that order. Those are the subjects I tend to talk about.
But what I’ve noticed about myself is this: when I’m in those “mixed-company situations,” those “meet a new person situations,” those “whatever the heck situations,” and yes, those “sitting around the house with my own darned wife situations,” it always comes back to Beer.
This is my topic of choice. This is what’s on my mind. This is the way I make connections to people, places and things.
I have Least Common Denominator Syndrome, more commonly known as a “one-track mind.” The strangers I meet don’t seem to mind. Beer is interesting, after all. “Wow! You brew your own beer?” they say. Then they ask me heaps of follow-up questions, and my time and conversations are made to feel useful and comfortable.
You, too, may be afflicted. Here are a few ways you might tell:
1. When you meet someone from Northern California, you beg them to send you some Russian River.
2. When you meet someone from Michigan, you say, “Aaaahhh! They’ve got a lot of good beer up there.”
3. When someone says they just got back from a trip to Germany, you ask what all beers they had.
4. Actually, you make a lot of connections between locations/travel to beer, and when you take trips, you spend a lot of time plotting out beery destinations to optimize the trip’s delight, so lump the first four together as NUMBER ONE.
NUMBER TWO: When your spouse is telling you about their rough day at work, you suddenly exclaim, “A-ha! I know what I’m going to brew next!”
NUMBER THREE: You smell just about everything.
NUMBER FOUR: You check for clarity when drinking Sprite.
NUMBER FIVE: When you’re visiting a cemetery, your children enthusiastically point out names like Porter and McGinnis. They also scoff at Budweiser trucks driving down the highway.
NUMBER SIX: Basically, you butt into a lot of conversations on a beer-related theme (the examples are endless).
This doesn’t just happen with beer. My wife does it with yoga. She keeps telling me about crap that doesn’t interest me: poses that would help my bowels, upcoming trainings, fascinating facts. When we travel somewhere, she’s all: “Oh, I bet I could catch a class!”
A class?!?! Not when there are brewpubs to hit!
Yes, I have a slight problem, so I must work to curb my enthusiasm. It’s hard to keep it bottled up, but I’m doing a pretty good job. Perhaps you have similar issues, and I’m just here to tell you to take good care of yourself and those around you. Keep it in check, brothers and sisters.