conversation

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conversation piece

Something unusual or interesting that becomes or is intended to become the topic of conversation when it is encountered by other people. Did you see Helen's new chair that's shaped like a giant red stiletto shoe? Yes, it's quite the conversation piece! Jane's new hairstyle became a conversation piece in the office because people couldn't believe she would cut her hair so short.
See also: conversation, piece

make conversation

To chat with someone simply for the sake of talking. I hate having to make conversation with the adults my parents invite to their dinner parties. A: "It's none of your business what I do for work." B: "I was just trying to make conversation, no need to be so sensitive!"
See also: conversation, make

strike up a conversation (with one)

To begin a speaking with one; to strike up a conversation with one. I just find it so hard to strike up a conversation with someone I don't know. They kept getting interrupted every time they tried striking up a conversation.
See also: conversation, strike, up

open a conversation (with one)

To begin a speaking with one; to strike up a conversation with one. I just find it so hard to open a conversation with someone I don't know. They kept getting interrupted every time they tried opening a conversation.
See also: conversation, open

open a conversation

to start a conversation. (See also strike up a conversation.) I tried to open a conversation with him, but he had nothing to say. She opened a conversation with an inquiry into my health, which got me talking about my favorite subject.
See also: conversation, open

strike up a conversation

to start a conversation (with someone). I struck up an interesting conversation with someone on the bus yesterday. It's easy to strike up a conversation with someone when you're traveling.
See also: conversation, strike, up

conversation piece

An unusual object that arouses comment or interest, as in That bust of Aunt Nettie is ugly but it's an excellent conversation piece. In the early 1700s this same term was used for a particular kind of painting that represented a group, often a family, arranged as though they were conversing with one another. Later in the century the term was extended to any object that stimulates conversation.
See also: conversation, piece

make conversation

Engage someone in talking purely for its own sake, make small talk, as in She had a real talent for making conversation with strangers. [c. 1920]
See also: conversation, make
References in periodicals archive ?
Jaye Grant and Lo Rene have conversationally addressed areas that beginning artists and songwriters often ignore.
"With standup material, if you say it kind of conversationally it sounds kind of odd.
During the interview, speak naturally, conversationally, without jargon, acronyms, technical terms or alphabet soup, just as though you're talking to your mother or someone who doesn't know a thing about what you do.
A portion of the poems in All of Your Messages Have Been Erased continue in this conversationally confessional mode, including one about a son fishing, another that encompasses a Kentucky childhood of squirrel burgoo and casual cruelty, and yet another about missing a mother's last breath.
Instead, viewers get a ringside view as David and his celebrity sparring partners take part in some one-on-one boxing training and banter, pulling no punches both in the ring and conversationally.
The researchers suggest that the happy life is social and conversationally deep rather than solitary and superficial.
In my view The Devil and Kate is a perfect jewel of an opera, which is waiting to be liberated from the clutches of morning school or afternoon family performances; it is a gem with literary and musical qualities that were already noticed by the critics when it was first presented, a work that is exceptionally tightly constructed, terse and conversationally snappy like few others, and abridgments and alterations should be considered criminal.
Most important, the user can interact conversationally with the app and every other conversationally enabled mobile app on the phone.
The narrator, Karen Wild, spoke conversationally as she moved around the stage.
Barbers and other male patrons also discussed the issue conversationally.
All this science-y stuff is presented conversationally and leavened with lots of personal stories and humor.
Once you can use it conversationally, it will be easy to use in an interesting way during an appointment.
These findings suggest that the happy life is social and conversationally deep, rather than solitary and superficial.
Once you've broken the ice with either of those responses, it's a pretty safe bet that conversationally you will be able to keep things moving as long as necessary.
Rare indeed are novels with such unstilted, conversationally real dialogue, and authentic patois as this one.