This is something I have always wondered. There was a point of time when I thought I talked a lot. And I guess I did. It was more like some bubbly prattle. Because the child inside me had somehow managed to live on despite the rough changes my life had undergone. But what I am talking about right now is something very different. Why do women have this compulsive need to talk …always ?
I will take the liberty to quote some of the incidents which I have been a part of passively which have now led me to take seats in restaurants and cafe’s far from any table which has more than one woman on it.
The most recent one – Leopold’s Cafe. Upper Seating Area. So I enter there with my boyfriend and on the table next to ours was this herd of women who seemed to have no idea exactly how loud and unruly they are. And dint seem to care either. We left the table in less than 5 mins for a table which was more crowded but thankfully less loud. I say less loud because there were 2 women in the next table again who erupted into loud shrieks and thunderous laughs from time to time. But I could watch F1 Races on the TV, so well, I could tolerate it.
Another one – in the local train to CST. It is common knowledge in Mumbai that not too many women travel in the normal compartments in the local trains but rather in the ladies compartments. I never ever ever even try to travel in the ladies compartment, not even when it is fall-off-the-train crowded. And for good reason. Within minutes you will know why. The train was not particularly crowded that day. Very emptyish, since we were traveling in the direction opposite to the rush. Apart from a few sideways glances at me, all the men in the compartment were silent and minding their own business. At some station, I think it was Kurla, some 5-6 women entered very boisterously and assertively sat down on the limited space available in the compartment at that point of time. That was okey. Most men are respectful towards women in general in trains. After a few minutes I realized that I could not hear the music from my ipod very well. Damn the chatter. The women were talking amongst themselves. Or that is what they thought. They might have been talking amongst themselves, but well, if I knew Marathi, I would, and so would the rest of the entire compartment, know everything about their discussion at the end of the ride. It was just so hard to ignore. No matter how loud music you play, if your headphones are not noise-cancelling, you just cant miss it.
Another random incident. I was trying to buy some furniture for my new unfurnished house. It was the middle of the day in October and I was tired of the bike ride and sweaty. To avoid a bike ride back home in the afternoon, I suggested that my boyfriend and I cool down at a cafe and wait for the sun to set. Unfortunately there was only one table left in the cafe which was crammed in the middle of other tables, without any room to move around too much. And also, I guess we were out of luck. On the table behind us there was woman sitting with a very quiet guy. This woman, could do nothing but whine. She was something from the creative arts, maybe some0ne somewhere in the media, considering the part of town that we were in. We were forced to hear all her sob stories about her colleagues and what not. We couldn’t help laughing. We were not in the best of moods, but it was really amusing. We switched to another table as soon as it got free.
Now the big question. Seriously, what is it that makes women talk so much ?
There is one theory that I came up with. It kinda makes sense to me. Dating back to the times of kings and queens. The time when men used to go out and work hard and earn a living for the household and women used to stay at home, clean the house, cook food and take care of the children. Think about it. Men were too busy working all the time to leave them too much time to spend in talking amongst themselves. Women, on the other hand, staying at home all the time, needed some time away from their daily routines doing something else. This was talking. To other similarly free and bored fellow women. They discussed their lives with each other. Every small thing. Small things, because their lives at that point of time were made up of really small everyday tasks. While on the other hand men after having spent all their energy in their work, had no energy left to talk. They wanted to enjoy some quiet peaceful time in their home. This is 0one explanation. This also explains the unending need for women to always talk about relationship issues with their guys and discussing it with their friends whereas men are more accustomed to dismissing every day trivia and avoiding any talk about it. Also, they are not very good at talking and are inwardly afraid that they will mess it up, since they are not used to it since old ages.
Another contributing theory of mine also dates back to old ages. This has to do with importance and rank in the society. Whereas men gained honor and importance in the society by dint of their work and skills, women were not allowed to have any skills or do any work other than the household work. But everyone has an inherent need for importance. Women gained their due importance by merit of their communication skills and the capacity to converse. They must have been known for the subjects which they were good at talking about, their ability to draw attention of others to their conversation, their style etc.
This also explains why w0men are generally thought of as attention-seekers. Its not really their fault. They were denied all possible attention for centuries when men devoured all the social glory and left women working on petty tasks which no one cared about.
And all of this has made the women of this century the loud, boisterous, attention-loving, tirelessly talkative creatures that we loath to sit next to in restaurants. If only ancient men knew !