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21 Dinner Party Conversation Starters for Awkward Silences

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Maybe the conversation came to a halt after it got a little too heated (thank you, primaries), or you accepted an invitation only to realize that you don't have anything in common with your neighbors aside from an address. When your tablemate dropped his fork, you said, "Darn it!" just to break the silence.

What not to say: "First I sewed one pom pom onto the table runner, then I sewed a second on, then a third..."
What not to say: "First I sewed one pom pom onto the table runner, then I sewed a second on, then a third..." Photo by James Ransom

For those moments when the awkward silence is, well awkward, it can be useful to have a fallback (because "How 'bout them Yankees?" will only get you so far). Here are 25 things to say when you don't have anything to say at all:


1. "What's your cat's moon sign?"

2. "Who's the last person you blocked on Facebook?"

3. "Tell me about your mother."


4. "What do you think of when I say the word Cerulean?"

Photo by Harry Kong

5. "Are you ready for this jelly?"

6. "This one time, in band camp..."

7. "What was your favorite joke from The Book of Mormon?"

8. "What do you see when I splatter the gravy from my potatoes on my plate, like this?"

9. "Which one's your favorite child? No, really."

10. "Who do you think should be next season's Bachelor?"

11. "If you could have dinner with any person, living or temporarily resurrected zombie, who would it be?"

Photo by James Ransom

12. "Can you lick your elbow?"

13. "Is Beyoncé queen?"

14. "Lannisters or Starks?"

15. "What would you say if I told you this dinner isn't actually vegetarian?"

16. "Are bell-bottoms having a moment?"

17. "Are you a cat person or a kitten person?"

18. "Will you still feed me when I'm sixty-four?"

Photo by James Ransom

19. "What's the weirdest thing you've ever bought on Craigslist?"

20. "Seriously though: Do you think Rose could have made room for Jack on the door?"

21. "Is it time for dessert yet?"

How do you break the ice? Help us out in the comments below.

Tags: dinner party, conversation starter, dinner conversation