Banter 101

Cutting out the silly stuff such as weirdo cold-approaching and question trains allows you to bring the good stuff such as complimenting, disqualifying, building relationships and creating relaxed and sexy interactions. Here's a recent interaction of mine. Perhaps you can spot the conversational techniques we teach here at Charisma Arts. Enjoy!

I look over and see a hot girl sitting, waiting. She refuses to look my way. She seems focused on something. So I smile at the worker drone walking by.

The drone smiles back. "Can I help you with something?" she asks.

I'm stretching in the doorway. "No. I just have a natural look about myself such that I seem as if I need help. But when I do actually need help I'm going straight to you because you look as if you know a lot of things."

The drone and I joke around for a couple minutes.

I like acting nice to drones. Drones are people too. One day I will launch a drone army and enslave humankind. Muhahahahaha...

But I digress. The hot girl is looking over at me now thanks to the conversation with the drone. I smile, give her a wave. "I like your style, " I say. I like the way you matched your boots with your top."

"Thanks."

"You're welcome." I show my kicks. "I rocked these shoes just for you."

"They're good."

"You're just saying that. We both know they look like clown shoes. But thanks for being nice. You know, come to think of it I HAVE been known to twist up some balloon animals."

"I used to love those when I was a kid."

"Well, you're in luck."

I pick up a napkin, study her for a moment then fold and press the napkin through several contortions. I present the result of my labor it to her. "It's a puppy," I say.

The gob of napkin looks nothing like a puppy.

She laughs.

I shrug. "I'm not a good clown." I pick up my coffee cup. "Thankfully, you look as if you have a strong imagination." I make the napkin-mess bark a couple times.

"I do have a strong imagination," she says.

"Me too. I was never good in school so I just filled the gaps in my knowledge with make-believe."

"That's what I do actually."

I spread my hands. "Well there you go. Random meeting? I think not. Must've been fate."

"I'm an actor." she says.

"What sort of actor?"

"Stage."

"I can see that. I like how you end your sentences on a high note. It's kinda musical."

"That comes from the training."

"What? Like... Kung Fu training?"

"Ha. Musical training. I've been singing all my life."

"That makes sense." I think a moment. "It's ironic. I'm pretty tone deaf but I seem to have dated a lot of musician girls. For instance, I dated a girl who was a violin player. She had one of those perma-hickeys. I always introduced her to people on her non-hickey side."

"So you've dated a lot of girls, huh?"

"Do you really care about that? I'm thinking, not really. It just be an exercise either way for my ego. Let's talk about something different, something you find interesting. What are you doing here, If I may ask?"

She nods. "Auditioning."

"Yeah, that makes sense. It's that kind of place. Mind if I check out your script. I presume that's it right there."

"Sure." She hands over the papers. I read a few lines, which are highlighted in yellow, out loud.

"The secret to acting is in the verbs," I say. "Not the nouns. Things don't hold power. Actions do. But don't listen to me. You're the pro. I'm just some guy. You probably have your own acting ideas which work for you."

"I do. But what do you mean?"

"Emphasizing the verbs more than anything else in the dialog will make you appear as if you're not acting. The art of acting is not to act but be. At least that's the theory.

We talk about acting for a few minutes.

Then I say, "Can I ask you a personal question?"

"Sure."

"What's your relationship situation?"

"I'm single."

"Really?"

"You seem surprised."

"I am. I'm not hitting on you by the way, but a girl as attractive as you usually has a boyfriend or two."

"Well, I don't."

"Must be something wrong there. You must be crazy or something. Ha. I'm just kidding. You're awesome. I like it when people have the courage to not have to be in a relationship. Of course living here helps. This is a single city. That's why I had to move out of New York. I got into a relationship. Once that happens a person gets kicked out. The mayor came to my apartment."

She laughs.

I nod. "So, single huh? What kind of guys do you like, if you don't mind me asking?"

"Anyone who's not an actor."

"Sounds like a story there."

"I was hoping you were going to say you liked girls."

"Occasionally."

"That's hot. I'm thinking you should meet a girl I know. That is if you like hot girls. I mean I like hot girls."

"Who doesn't like hot girls? Is this your girlfriend?"

"No, I don't have a girlfriend." I finger my ring. "I got the full deal."

"Yeah, I noticed that before."

"I like being married. It's the new alternative life style. I think you would like my wife. You could be friends. She's fun. Way more fun than me."

"Yeah, we should all hang out sometime."

"It could be a double date. I'll bring a guy for you. Or it could be just the three of us. That could be a lot of fun. And let's face it, it'd make me look like the man - out and about with a couple beautiful girls. Who knows what would happen later."

"Ha. I see the kind of guy you are."

"When I met my wife her co-worker said to her I looked like a pervert - but a good pervert."

"That's not a bad title."

"That's what I was thinking. Maybe get a t-shirt. So, um, is this cool?"

"It's cool."

"Sometimes people do meet for a reason."

"Sometimes they do."

To be continued.

Want to sharpen your banter skills? Come join me at the next Conversation Camp.

All the best, Wayne