Warning: this is a little mean 😂
A little while ago I happened across this tweet and wondered whether Ryan would say the same if he knew a child or young person with a fixed interest (disclaimer: I don't know Ryan and he very well might!):
Even with someone who can talk for an eternity on a particular topic or interest, the above is still true - maybe even more so. It's just that it takes a lot to stay interested for the duration of their excitement, and it's even more difficult to ask engaging questions when you don't really know much about the topic.
I've heard a statistic that our intelligence is the average of the five people with which we spend the most time. I think this might be true of general knowledge too. At different points through time I have become quite informed on topics that have nothing to do with my day-to-day life, like Mind Craft, Thomas the Tank Engine and the mechanical workings of washing machines. The most obscure and yet fascinating topic was exposed plumbing and pipework in buildings.
I feel over the years, I have developed quite the skill in the art of asking informed questions on topics I know nothing about 😂.
Our Ryan is right. It is one of the nicest things we can do. There are benefit for us too. We learn to listen and our patience grows; we become a more considerate person. We don't have to be nice all the time - we're not angels! We can't allow it to happen in every conversation - it's not practical or reality. But, our Ryan is right ... it is one of the nicest things we can do.