look into my eyes

July 7th, 2006

"If you're not looking into my eyes when I'm talking to you then I don't think you respect me." Do you know these people? Get off your high horse already. All it means is that I'm able to carry on a conversation while doing something else. Ie. I'm economizing on my time. It may come as a shock, but everyday conversation is not some noble art, it's a very common and cheap thing, any two people can have a go anytime at all.

And at the heart of the issue, not every conversation is engaging enough to require that kind of undivided attention. If I were speaking to say Jerry Seinfeld about his writing process or say Miguel de Icaza about his next vision in the linux space, I just might want to concentrate fully on that. But if I'm having an everyday conversation about some issue that isn't immensely gripping, I'm not going to. In any case, it's a drag to keep up that staring contest beyond the first 5-10 minutes anyway.

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3 Responses to "look into my eyes"

  1. erik says:

    If anything, the staring makes it difficult for me to concentrate. I'm thinking to myself: "How much should I be staring? OK time to briefly look away, then verbally verify you're listening, then look back" and crap like that. It's no good :D

  2. ash says:

    I think the random quote I saw next to this post is appropriate here

    "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
    ~Samuel Johnson (1709-1784)~

    There's nothing more annoying than trying to hold a conversation with someone who looks like they're not listening (even if they are). If you're bored you should say so and show a litle honesty, or else not get annoyed when people complain.

  3. numerodix says:

    You can't be serious. Do you really talk like that to everyone at every occasion? Showing that you're not interested in the conversation is one thing and I catch myself doing that from time to time, yes shame on me. But there is a way to keep a conversation going perfectly well without a staring contest. I get really bored with that, so I start looking around the room and stuff. It doesn't mean I'm not interested, I can still keep my focus on the subject.