Who needs tact when you have over-sharing?

What is this mysteriously magical pull between my brain and someone I barely know? Why do I feel the need to bridge the gap by telling them something they never expected? And why do I always share things you're supposed to keep to yourself?

Yes, those times when normal chit-chat would do but I fill it with nuggets from my life, hard, gold, treasure-finds that leave people at a loss for words - which then leaves another hole in the conversation for me to fill with something else.

It's as if one piece of information, unasked for but wholly perfect for the moment it pops into my brain, then opens the door for all the others. As if one metaphorical cat, instead of running into the garden, turns round and opens the door wide for the rest of the cats to pour through.

All I had to do was fill in one simple piece of conversational by-the-by. There was no invitation to share (whoever really needed one?), there was no suitable opening only the size and shape of that one share: I could have talked about the weather and it would have been good.

But no! Why talk about the weather when you can open a door into your life and let all the cats out? Wouldn't people rather have this great little conversation-stopper than the same old guff about the cold and the rain?

Personally, I love it when I get gossip instead of guff. People over-share and they are safe with me. If it's too much I say to them, 'That's probably more than you should be telling me!' So then they know they're over-sharing. Also, they're always surprised it's too much information, so at least I know I'm not the only one who finds it confusing.

Unfortunately no one ever seems to say that to me. Rather they listen, trying to fix their face into Not-Surprise so that they can respond when I finally shut my mouth.

So I apologise if this great bit of gossip is over-sharing, or that tidbit about my toilet habits; don't worry if you have no comeback to this as your silence will be taken as rapt interest and I'll just carry on where I left off, if I ever did leave off.

When we have to move on and I realise I did it again, at least you'll know me better than either of us expected. The best of friendships can start this way, you know? And you might feel like over-sharing yourself sometime. I promise to tell you if it's too much, but also I'm full of great advice for that little problem of yours.

See how great over-sharing can be!


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