We published a story at the beginning of the COVID-19 fiasco about topics to talk about that don’t relate to the pandemic, and you loved it.

So we’re back again with another rendition we hope to bring back on the monthly.

We’re charmed that you’re into the art of bringing back great conversation to the dinner table (as opposed to a tripod, lighting, and the latest iPhone for #FoodPorn), and so we’ve put together a host of topics that have caught our eyes and ears. Whether it’s from random observations, podcasts, readings, or other mediums, here are five things to talk about at dinner this month.

[Hero Image Credit: Stefan Johnson/Unsplash; Featured Image Credit: Hannah Rodrigo/Unsplash]

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Are you #TeamShower or #TeamBath?

Some people are left-handed. Some people are right-handed. Some are Cat People. Some are Dog People.

In an interesting piece published by Mr Porter, the author posed the question: Baths vs Showers: which side are you on?

And we haven’t been able to stop thinking about it since.

The bathtub: it is the ever-grammable highlight of every modern day hotel bathroom, but it is also a massive “waste” of water, especially if you’re Team Eco-friendly.

Or is it?

In an intriguing back-and-forth (together with the Mr Porter editor, who is called Tom Ford, no less), the piece really got us thinking.

Bring it up at dinner. Are you a bath person or are you a shower person? And argue your case accordingly. If you need some inspiration, we also took part in the conversation, which you can find here.

Image Credit: Hannah Rodrigo/Unsplash

If you’re speaking to a friend you haven’t spoken to in a while, try this technique.

There’s no denying that COVID-19 has us craving for connections. Whilst we’re happy to see that we can now travel domestically, travelling abroad is still posing a bit of a challenge. You’ll know this is you’re in a long distance relationship and dying to see bae, or if you have family and friends abroad.

Granted, the internet (and tagging people in memes regularly) facilitates a lot of things, but if like us, you’ve been losing touch with a few of your friends, here’s an interesting technique.

Are haikus becoming a thing again? Because we’ve been spotted them on the likes of Manrepeller and more, and enjoying them thoroughly. Whilst they’re easy to write and quite charming to read (especially in the age of low attention spans), we recently considered them as a way to catch up with long-lost friends.

Sometimes we shy away from speaking to people we haven’t spoken to in years, simply because it’s been “too long” and “so much has happened.” Try this technique. Sum up various aspects of your life in one haiku. You could categorise them by areas of life, such as ‘Love,’ ‘Career,’ ‘Family,’ and ‘Hobbies.’

Now try it at the dinner table. Maybe do one sentence (with limited syllables) instead of one haiku. It’ll be hilarious, and really get your brain going.

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How human sweat and mosquitoes could be the future

Here’s one for the nature lovers.

We’ve long admired Sonu Shivdasani’s view on the world, especially with his love for the environment and fully respecting Mother Nature in all his processes.

A recent example is about how Soneva has been working with Biogents on mosquito control at their resorts. Soneva Fushi in the Maldives aimed to bring the mosquito population down to zero, and become the first mosquito-free island in the Maldives, without damaging the natural food chain and eco-systems.

As opposed to hot fogging and mist blowing, they turned to natural resources for inspiration. By mimicking mosquito breeding sites, human sweat, and exhaled human breath, mosquitos were attracted to cleverly-designed traps, where they dried out and died. It’s a really forward-thinking technique which really worked. To date, the mosquito population has been reduced by about 95-98%, which is incredible.

The underlying message is one that permeates through to listening to the planet and responding in a way that fully respects it. Inspire your guests with this anecdote, and to be more mindful of the chemicals around us.

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Is a side hustle revolution upon us?

Have you been ordering cakes via Instagram vendors lately? Which ones? And what cakes?

In a Ted Talk, Nicaila Matthews Okome explains how a side hustle revolution is upon us, not only as we gear towards having multiple streams of income, but also as we strive for being creative and entrepreneurial. There’s something about being your own boss that accounts for a lot of the motivation, as well as feeling full-filled and #SelfMade.

Ask your dinner guests: what is a side hustle you run or would like to run? What are some of your current favourites?

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Do you drink black coffee, apple cider vinegar, or a chocolate mint frappe in the morning?

This one stems from one of our recent visits to the book store. What is it with us and being obsessed with morning routines?

There are entire books dedicated to outlining these, in several ways suggesting that an “effective” morning routine will make you more successful. It is also a common column for many lifestyle magazines, and for some reason it is something that people (is it obvious this doesn’t include us) seem to be really keen on reading. It is also something everyone of us can say something about. I mean, what’s your morning routine?

Bring this back to your dinner guests, and question them on their weekday and weekend morning routines and how this has changed over the years. Compare it to a drastic one like that of Elon Musk or Mark Wahlberg, and then draw on your own experiences. For some reason, we’ve found that our dinner party guests are thrilled to share they drink apple cider for breakfast.

Lisa Gries
Managing Editor, Bangkok
Lisa loves to travel, and is always on the lookout for the world’s best nap spots. She’s a serious Asian art history nerd, and has a knack for languages and coffee table books. She hopes to publish her own novels one day, one of which will likely be called ‘All The Great Conversations I Had In A Bangkok Speakeasy.’ It’s a work in progress.