Stupidity and Saying Too Much

Have you ever engaged in conversation with someone and realized midway or even early on, that you’ve revealed more information than you wanted and consequently, longed for a really reliable getaway car? That was me this past weekend.

It’s junior golf tournament season once more which means I’m out there walking the courses, while watching Junior play; thus increasing the odds of my running into stupers (short, yet again, for nerve-wrackingly stupid persons). Most parents, coaches and other assorted junior golf entourage generally suffer from jumbled nerves, which makes them easily agitated, which makes them somewhat crazy.

On Hole 5, I needed to escape the fidgety, hyperactive parents around me, so I walked ahead for some alone time to regain my sanity and calm. I did and marveled at the peacefulness…for about one minute. Suddenly a new parent appeared on the cart path, walking toward me with a gait reserved for Kentucky Derby thoroughbreds headed for the finish line.

“Good,” I thought, “she won’t want to stop and chat.”

Wrong. She halted long enough to ask what time my son’s group went out so she figure out what hole her child was on. Her parting words to me were,

“Isn’t it cold today? I should have worn my parka that I wear when I visit my older son who’s going to school at Harvard. I’ve gotta go find my younger son who’s a really good player and won the _______ tournament last May.”

As she left, I thought, that’s nice that her son’s at an Ivy League university and her other one’s a great player; no doubt she’s proud, but why tell me? I’ll never see her again. I vowed not to give out so much information to people I don’t know. It sounds so unnecessary.

Fast forward to the end of Hole 5, minutes later.

I’m standing at the putting green with what appears to be a fatherly type. We exchange greetings. Then I notice the name on his hat. I say,

“Butch? It’s me, Keli. You used to be my son’s golf coach.”

He says hello and we make small talk until he asks who my son’s current coach is. Plagued by a sudden attack of guilt for no longer using Butch as teacher, I suddenly share too much information as to why Son stopped seeing him, revealing a few unnecessary details that I’m certain my son would not have appreciated. I feel tarnished. As I turn away, Butch responds that he now works at an elite golf training center with elite junior golfers and charges elite prices. I leave, wishing him great success, but feeling like I wish I’d kept my mouth closed and avoided interaction.

Every time I talk too much, I feel like I’ve given a piece of myself away. For free. This is especially true when talking to virtual strangers; people that don’t even know my name. My son had very good reasons for switching golf coaches; it didn’t require explaining, nor did Butch ask for one. I volunteered in a wild effort to smooth out barely perceptible wrinkles. In short, I was the one going a bit crazy.

Researchers claim talking too much can increase anxiety, depression and most importantly, stupidity.  We instantly see how unbecoming it is when others say too much; there’s no reason for us to do the same. Oversharing results from underthinking which is the shortest path to stupidity.

Think first, last and always.


8 Responses to “Stupidity and Saying Too Much”

  1. Onedia says:

    Guilty, Chronically Guilty. I try not too, but I do not process as well when I talk. It even made it into my medical records that I tend to “overtalk the caregiver” yikes!

    I have several theories and my blessed sweet man does try to nudge me but so little in life is “black or white” too much gray scale in there that needs more explanation.

    Sighhhh, now I am really embarrassed at the number of people who may label me as a stupe.

  2. MC says:

    I hate it when I do this! So many times words have slipped out -whole sentences, and I think, why did I just tell her that? Idiot!

  3. Suzie says:

    I am also guilty of talking too much and giving information to people without them asking. But I know I am safe, because no body listens to me any way. When I am in the middle of my conversation they walk away.

  4. Tom says:

    I wouldn’t worry too much. You were attempting to make someone feel better. Guilt induced exposure. There are worse things….like that woman telling you about her successes (children).

  5. Elaine says:

    I’m guilty of this too occasionally and like MC I immediately think, why did I tell her that? I take with me this:

    “Oversharing results from underthinking”

  6. jessica says:

    I know this so well and yet I CAN’T STOP TALKING. I have learned that the quieter I am the more others talk and then walk away feeling the way I USED to. Why, oh why, can I not make that a permanent behavior?

  7. Paulyn says:

    Oh yes, sometimes I say more than enough too… and when this happens, believe me I always find myself wishing I never cross paths with that person ever again!

  8. Ferd says:

    Yeah, count me in, I sometimes say way more than I need to, and sometimes I regret it.

    But I have learned a lot from Princess Gail. She is the kind of person who takes her time processing and considering what she heard, and then responds with the minimum. She is often mistaken for being cold, or aloof. There are times when she doesn’t respond at all! She is a very boundaried person, to a fault. And when I examine it, she is always appropriate. At those times when she doesn’t respond, the other person doesn’t deserve a response. People who take the time to get to know her realize that she is actually a very intelligent person, and appreciate her wisdom and counsel. She’s taught me that when speaking, less is usually better than more. But you might gather from my drawn out response that I am still learning! Ha!

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.