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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Thinking While Talking

I don't know about anyone else, but when I have a conversation with someone, I like that conversation to move along in a meaningful manner.  This especially holds true when I am at work or about to start work.  I got into a certain mode when working where most if not all of my focus is concentrated on getting things done in the most efficient way possible.  Therefore, I do not always pick up my phone while working as it disrupts my flow.  Not only that, it is not always possible for me to pick up the phone while working as I could be in the middle of painting something where I can't really stop.   I like to keep any conversations I have with people during the work day to a minimum so I can get as much done as possible.  Well, enough of an intro into my conversation preferences.  The reason I am writing about this today is due in large part to a job I just started this week.  Its another exterior and will probably take me a little while to get all the work done.  Anyway, as I was about to start work yesterday, the home owner called me.  As it was my second day on the job and he was away on Monday, I felt I had to pick up the phone.  Now, whenever this gentleman calls, I always debate picking up the phone versus letting him just leave me a message.  This man is super nice, always polite, yet he absolutely loves to talk.  When I mean he loves to talk, I mean he loves to talk.  Not that there is a problem with his love of talking, I just don't always have the time to listen to him talk. 

Take yesterday for example.  He was just calling in the morning to make sure I was all set with getting started.  That's it, yet the conversation soon morphed into other things he was thinking of like paint color and what not.  Needless to say, a conversation that should have taken 5 minutes or less stretched to at least 20 minutes.   Yesterday was no anomaly.  I believe almost every conversation I have had with him over the phone has lasted at least 20 minutes if not longer.  For the most part, he does all the talking.  To make a comparison, it is almost like reading a book that was written using a style known as "stream of conscience."  Picture taking almost any book by Jack Kerouac and starting to read it.  Sometimes its tough to know when to stop reading because it just keeps on going and going and going and you don't want to stop in the middle of something good.  Well, that is like this person, he just talks and talks, most times I feel while he is thinking, and it is just a constant stream coming through the phone.  I find it almost impossible to interrupt him and get in a word edgewise.  Its not like he is just talking senselessly, everything he says is related to the overall theme of our conversation, its just over loaded with every detail relating to a certain topic.  Yesterday he was talking about paint color and how he hadn't really figured out the exact hue or sheen and still needed to talk to the company and figure out if he needed the two primer's they recommend or just one and if they could tint them and then depending on the color picked how it will look with the shutters being put on the house versus the roof and the rest of the siding and really making sure that it all comes together and doesn't look too out of place because if the trim is too dark then it might clash with the shutters so lighter might be better but we also have to make sure that it doesn't clash with the roof because otherwise it will get lost and then you won't even notice it.....  Get the point?

In any case, I will see him this morning before he goes to work and I am sure that I will be talking to him for about half an hour before I can actually start working.  To be honest, I am sure that we will be talking about paint color again.  So what do I do with this guy?  I listen, that's it, and sometimes my mind actually starts wandering to other things I have to do during the day.  I did that a few times yesterday while on the phone and I still managed to keep with the conversation and keep track of what he was discussing with me.  I just somehow managed to listen for the key points and disregard the rest of the little details he was sharing.   That's the way this guy operates and I am just going to have to deal with it.  Its not that it bothers me, I just wish sometimes that he got to the point a little quicker and expedited our conversation so we could both get back to work.  Oh well, at least he doesn't work from home or it would probably take me 4 months to get the house painted.  In addition, he works longer days so that's a distinct advantage for me as well.  If I wasn't working on his house, I would have no problem having conversation with him, its just when I want to work, I really want to work and don't want any interruptions.  It is what it is, life is full of interruptions and the best we can do is deal with them as they come along.  Every interruption is an opportunity.  As long as I keep that in mind, everything goes smoothly.  (I just wish he would grow a filter when talking to me). 

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