– a true story, a participant of my training told many years back:
We had this colleague from the U.S. team around. To say it right at the beginning. We liked the colleague. He is a very nice man. And we usually get along well. He came to Germany to join our meeting. Only on that day, in the break, on the way to the company restaurant, at the table, he talked and talked and talked and talked and talked about this subject… which he found so very interesting, but we would have liked to talk about something else. I really didn’t want to talk about that subject. But also, I really didn’t want to offend him. I tried to give hints… I tried to change the subject – and that normally works, only today he came back to his subject… and talked and talked… mmh, I thought, and somehow it slipped out of my mouth: “oh, – short break –, interesting.” My tone seemed neutral to me, I didn’t raise my voice like it might be common in the German melody of the sentence. I just felt lost for words, knew no better to say. But to my surprise, he stopped talking.