At a party/lunch/work function/bar/medical convention, a conversation is going well, but dangerous territory is broached.
The Enemy: ‘What’s your Favorite [insert media example here] of all time?’
The Victim: ‘Oh gosh, there are so many, I don’t know, I can’t think of anything, I…I guess [you blurt out the title of some widely-acknowledged lesser exponent of an artist’s creative oeuvre, ie Prince’s ‘Under the Cherry Moon’ instead of ‘Purple Rain’ or Clint Eastwood’s ‘Paint Your Wagon’ instead of ‘Unforgiven’].
YOU HAVE DIED.
How to avoid such a fate? Where is the reset button of life?
There isn’t one, but those who aren’t willing to learn from history are doomed to repeat it!
If you had known the maneuver known (in my head) as the Reverse Highlander, this wouldn’t have happened.
Are you ready to learn it?
‘So what’s your favorite [blahblahbla] of all time?’
Step One: ‘Well, there can’t be only one.’
See what I did there?
Step One allows you time to gather your thoughts, organize, and target them instead of just shotgunning them all over the face of whoever you’re speaking with. I fully realize that the average person does not live in fear of conversational faux pas like long pauses, losing one’s train of thought or stuttering, but there’s no harm in being prepared and practicing good conversational skills.
Step Two: You’ve gathered your thoughts, and can now progress with the conversation like a stone cold orator, which if I know kids these days is every kid’s dream.
‘Of course I enjoy [Neil Gaiman’s film adaptation of Coraline/most of his books/his accent] but there can’t be only one favorite. And even though it landed heavily on the side of suck, there was something fun about his Beowulf adaptation.’
And that kids, is the Reverse Highlander.
Because there can’t be only one.