By lunchtime, I was tired of tedious work discussions. Doesn't anyone have fun hobbies they like to talk about FFS? I purposely sat a table with some millennial whose face was buried in his phone. He didn't so much as glance up when I sat across from him. Perfect. I took out my phone and proceeded to text and chat with friends while I was eating my steak and parsnips.
Another man sat down, and I quickly glanced up to see if I knew him and needed to make small talk. I did not, and he avoided my eyes, so I assumed another millennial sans manners. I went back to my food and phone. The first dude abruptly finished, left his plate and utensils strewn about, and walked away. I glanced over at the second one to see his reaction, if any. He looked as taken aback as I was, so I joked that he must have been raised in a barn. Dude says, I have a barn now, and I'm not that rude. It turned out he lives in rural Florida and has 40 acres of farmland. And he's no millennial.
We ended up having a brilliant lunch conversation about non-work related stuff. He is attempting to raise native Florida fruit plants, like cherries, plums, huckleberries, and pears. Who knew those were native? We reminisced about Florida in our childhood. He grew up somewhat near to me. I learned about how he raises cattle, pigs, and poultry. We talked about rednecks and skinheads, and he noticed my Doc Martens and complimented me on them. We enjoyably spent the time together and barely mentioned the convention. It was refreshing.