2. Sign up for a few good email newsletters to score some extra factoids for casual conversation.
3. Whenever people are talking about the economy, just say, “It was all downhill after they repealed Glass-Steagall.”
After that, if you want to be able to enter a second level of conversation without running away, here’s some background. If not, probably just run away.
5. On that note, have a favorite writer, book and artist ready to name drop.
Nothing is worse than sitting there awkwardly as you try to think of a book — literally ANY BOOK THAT’S EVER BEEN PUBLISHED. Not a good look.
9. Refer to an NPR personality by his or her first name only.
“I was listening to Ira this morning.” If they have to ask, you win.
Warning: also kinda douche-y.
12. Write emails with proper punctuation and capitalization.
Even writing in all lowercase can make you seem kinda silly.
13. Become knowledgeable about one random thing.
- People are much less likely to call bullshit on what you’re saying because of the randomness.
- After the first time you bring it up, it will come up in conversation more than you’d think, multiplying your “smart points.” (Note: not a thing.)
- You’ll know some weird, interesting stuff.
- It can sneakily mask that you don’t know lots of other, obvious stuff.
- The Army Corps of Engineers and North Dakota police have ordered protesters to leave the Dakota Access Pipeline site by this afternoon or face arrest.
- Seven Earth-sized planets that could have water and possibly sustain life have been discovered orbiting a dwarf star, NASA announced today.
- The ACLU is suing the city of Milwaukee and its police for allegedly performing thousands of illegal stop-and-frisk searches that targeted minorities.
- #Peggygate: West Elm offers full refunds for the notoriously disintegrating Peggy Couch days after pulling it from its website and stores👏