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Question
Posted by: Liza | 2011/04/21

Being polite - CS, please ignore the post without a subject

CS - please answer this post and not the previous identical one since it doesn''t have a subject and cannot be accessed from the forum.

I take the train to work every morning. My problem is with this woman who takes the same train as I do. She latched onto me as her train buddy and she just cannot stop talking. She also talks the most BS I''ve ever heard. I mentioned that I''m a computer programmer (once when I got in a word edgewise), now she thinks that she knows everything about computers BUT she only knows enough to be dangerous according to me. She goes on and on about how great she is with computers - but she talks so much rubbish that it doesn''t even make sense. She tries to make it sound like she has the technical knowledge, but she throws technical terms into her verbal diarrea that has absolutely nothing to do with what she''s talking about.

I''ve tried to put her off by taking a book with and opening the book to read as soon as I get onto the train, but the verbal diarrea just continues. Her conversation is just so enervating (because I continually have to try and figure out what the h#ll she''s talking about). It''''s gotten so bad that I now sometimes just get a later train to avoid her, but then I get to work 30 minutes later.

What should I do? I want to be polite, but that might not be an option any longer...

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

I know the type. You never meet one when you're lonely or bored and would like a chatterer, do you ?
Several thoughts.
One, you could enlist the help of anyone else who regularly uses that train and carriage, and beg them to sit with you and not budge, so there's no room for Ms BigBek. When she comes, just shrug and smile.
Two, just be direct. Say something lime :"I'm sure all his is very fascinating, but I'm afraid I have a lot on my mind for work which I have to concentrate on, and so I'm not available for talking. Sorry. " And if he doesn't take the hint, just say firmly, "Please, I asked you to leave me out of your conversation - I have stuff I really need to think about / read ... and can't concentrate."
Three, there's probably no need to actually listen to anything she says, as she probably wants to talk much more than she wants to be heard. Drop in the odd "Uh-huh", and "Oh really ?" and let her drviel on.
Four, you don't have to buy an Ipod or such gadget, but get anything with earphone ( preferably ) or ear buds, and plug them in. The dadget doesn't even have to work. But it'll cut down the volume of her chat, and again, smile, point to the earphones, and shrug as though you can't here her. It need not BE an Ipod, just to look like some audio gadget.
People who are as rude as she is being, don't really deserve people who are polite back, so don't feel absolutely driven to be polite.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Maria | 2011/04/21

Look even that might not work, some people are so thick skinned, she might tap you on the shoulder and expect you to take the earphones off and listen to her anyway. You may have to go the direct route: Sorry, but sitting on the train in the mornings is when I relax and mentally prepare myself for my day, and I prefer not to talk to people.

Good luck!

Reply to Maria
Posted by: Liza | 2011/04/21

Unfortunately I have a very basic cellphone - i.e. no music or headphones...

Reply to Liza
Posted by: Lin | 2011/04/21

Do you have a cellphone with music on it? Put the walk and talk in your ears (even if it doesn''t have music on  -) )

Reply to Lin
Posted by: Liza | 2011/04/21

Hmmm. Will first have to go and buy an ipod/mp3 player. Can''t really afford that right now...

Reply to Liza
Posted by: Romany | 2011/04/21

This is an easy one and has happened to many of us before I am sure.
Get an I -Pod, stick it into your ears, lean back and close your eyes...........

Reply to Romany
Posted by: Maria | 2011/04/21

Can you not sit in a different carriage from her? Even if you have to get off and move to a different carriage when the train stops at a station. Otherwise try earphones?

Reply to Maria
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011/04/21

I know the type. You never meet one when you're lonely or bored and would like a chatterer, do you ?
Several thoughts.
One, you could enlist the help of anyone else who regularly uses that train and carriage, and beg them to sit with you and not budge, so there's no room for Ms BigBek. When she comes, just shrug and smile.
Two, just be direct. Say something lime :"I'm sure all his is very fascinating, but I'm afraid I have a lot on my mind for work which I have to concentrate on, and so I'm not available for talking. Sorry. " And if he doesn't take the hint, just say firmly, "Please, I asked you to leave me out of your conversation - I have stuff I really need to think about / read ... and can't concentrate."
Three, there's probably no need to actually listen to anything she says, as she probably wants to talk much more than she wants to be heard. Drop in the odd "Uh-huh", and "Oh really ?" and let her drviel on.
Four, you don't have to buy an Ipod or such gadget, but get anything with earphone ( preferably ) or ear buds, and plug them in. The dadget doesn't even have to work. But it'll cut down the volume of her chat, and again, smile, point to the earphones, and shrug as though you can't here her. It need not BE an Ipod, just to look like some audio gadget.
People who are as rude as she is being, don't really deserve people who are polite back, so don't feel absolutely driven to be polite.

Reply to cybershrink

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