Quotation by Michael Agar

New Yorkers speak more quickly and shift topics more rapidly. We all know that. But the way it's done is fascinating. At least it fascinated me when I first moved to New York. Someone has the floor and talks. As soon as I know what they are going to say, I can jump in, finish the sentence to show I understand, and take off into my own turn. The northern California I know isn't like that. Someone talks, and I lie back and listen and let them roll for a while. When they're done, there'll be a pause that will flash like a green light to announce that someone else can have the floor.
Michael Agar, U.S. anthropologist, educator. "Speech Act Lumber and Paint," Language Shock: Understanding the Culture of Conversation, William Morrow (1994).
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