Dear Father Hood: how do you make conversation with other parents in the park?
*Channels inner Sir David Attenborough voice.* And so, as winter turns to spring, the parents of young children begin to emerge from their homes and stagger downhill to the nearest play park.
Initially, these tired males and females keep themselves to themselves, but after a few minutes of yelling words like “stop”, “no”, “be careful” and “don’t touch that”, they spot other fully-grown members of the human species and start to yearn for the opportunity to discuss politics, popular culture, sport or, let’s be honest, anything other than Fireman Sam or Fortnite. And that’s when they… …wish they’d come to Father-Hood.co.uk and read this article before leaving the house.
A foolproof system
I say this for two reasons. First, because, after spending the last two summers attempting to make conversation with other parents in the park, I know how daunting and difficult it can be. Second, because, after spending the last two summers attempting to make conversation with other parents in the park, I believe that I have come up with a foolproof system for breaking the ice with the vast majority of these ladies and gentlemen.
Seriously? Yes, seriously. Just follow the below flow chart and easy conversation will result 95% of the time.
The other 5%
Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. If this is such a foolproof system, how come it only works 95% of the time? Honestly? It’s because, no matter how nice you are or how much conversation you try to make, around 5% of the parents you meet in the park will have absolutely no interest in speaking to you. It’s sad, but it’s life, and the key thing to remember in these situations is that it’s their loss, not yours.
Got that? Great, then get out there and get chatting, because a world of grown-up, parental conversation awaits.
Until next time…