Irish Culture And Customs-
Irish culture and customs of making conversation are a huge thing in Ireland. Irish people love to chat.
I have talked about the first stage of conversation, the
most likely opening topic, the follow up questions and about the stage of checking
you out in conversation here.
The Bonding Stage In Conversation
Now I am going to talk about the next phase in the
conversation where your conversation partner is going to look for things you
have in common, and wants to find out more about you.
Irish culture and customs- having a pint and sharing some humour, that's the spirit. At the Quay's Pub, Galway City.
So here is how this next stage might work out:
One of the next things you will be likely asked is about
your family. “How many in your family?” “Do you have children yourself?”
That sort of thing. Again, it is a safe topic that establishes trust
with the stranger.
But also, family IS hugely important here still and
the interest will be genuine if the conversation has progressed this far. These
days, this question makes a lot of sense to me and I sometimes find myself
asking people the same thing. Why?
We are not just individuals, but social beings as well. Understanding
your background means understanding a piece of you. That is, understanding
a piece of you without having to ask any directly personal question that you
may feel is intrusive. So it is really very polite as well. And you can ask
too and find out about their family situation.
If it’s not the family question, your Irish conversation partner is likely
to look for common ground with you. So, for example, if you are at a
concert, they could say: “Isn't the music great.” So early into the
conversation I would urge you to agree, even if you don't really think
That is, if you like them and want to keep chatting
to them. If you didn't agree, they could easily assume you had enough of them.
Sometime later on though you could slip in a comment to a different effect
though to stay faithful to yourself.
Irish Culture And Customs Of Conversation-
Another thing to expect in Irish culture is the custom of humour.
Again, humour establishes common ground and trust. And Irish people can
be VERY funny.
The two lads on the photo above (quick shot with my
smartphone) told me they hadn't seen each other in a couple of years. This was
their reunion- sharing a pint and having a laugh on a Saturday afternoon.
Humour is considered an essential part of life in Ireland!
My husband, I sometimes think, is my personal muse. He
makes me laugh a lot. Laughing together is a great thing. It is good for
both heart and soul.
A great feature in Irish humour is the ability Irish
people have to laugh at themselves. They don't take themselves too
seriously. Small mishaps or sometimes even big personal misfortunes will be
made into entertaining stories to be told in conversation.
When you have laughed together and talked about your families and hometowns,
you have done the ground works, and you are now good to go to talk about
more serious stuff if you like.
But what could also happen is that you will stay chatting
for a long time just for entertainment. About this, that and the other.
About other people ‘This guy I know...’, about funny stuff, oddities, whacky
things (Irish people love whacky stories), interests, travel experiences, you
name it. The focus will often be on what was funny or strange about the
experience. The Irish have a great sense of the ludicrous and they love to ‘have
a good laugh’.
You might not remember half of the subjects of your pub
conversations the next day, there can be so many. But you will remember
having enjoyed the chat. Irish people are great conversationists, they will
talk and talk and they will get you talking, too.
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Regards, Colm and Susanna
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