5 Ways to End a Conversation

in two moves or fewer

Ever feel trapped in a discussion that seems to have no way out?

It’s rude just to walk away.

The polite thing is to let people end conversations on their own terms and for their own reasons.

Of course, you can always give them one.

5 Ways to End a Conversation:

  1. Tilt your head to the side. Look confused. Ask, “Is that a euphemism?” The success of this tactic relies on waiting for the perfect opening. But don’t worry. Every conversation has one.

  2. Mid(unwanted) conversation, commence cutting open a durian, the world’s smelliest fruit. Ask your conversation partner to hold the spiky skin for you. Consume the pulpy lobes, chewing energetically with your mouth open.

  3. Act like you’re in love in a musical. Sing your responses directly into the other person’s face.

  4. Try out new accents. Switch to a new one every time the topic changes.

  5. Say, “Do you smell that?” Stop, sniff, and fan your hand in the air. “Ugh, I’m so sorry. I just never know when that’s going to happen.Note: It’s not necessary that you actually produce an aroma. To derail the conversation, it’s enough that you say it.


To be quite honest, I’m more likely to be the unwanted talker than the longsuffering listener.

If we ever find ourselves trapped in this dynamic, feel free to deploy any or all of these tactics. I promise to recognize what’s happening and gracefully exit the conversation.

Just don’t expect me to dispose of the durian skin.

That’s on you.