When Meeting a New Person, Stick to General Questions.

One of the best ways to turn small talk into interesting conversation is by asking questions. Ask more general questions to learn more about someone without an intrusive reaction.

Even if you make seemingly innocent assumptions, they can be confusing for both you and your new friend. For example, when you meet a younger woman and an older woman, you might think that they are a mother and daughter. But if you assume that (and ask about it), it can lead to a rather awkward situation if they turn out to be sisters, a date, or just friends. Use the broader question: “Who is this?” and not “Is this your daughter?” and spare yourself the awkward situation.

The Art of Small Talk: 5 Questions You Shouldn’t Ask | The art of masculinity

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