3

I come across this quite a bit and it manifests itself in different ways.

The situation I encounter the most is from people who don't seem to want to be interrupted, they need to finish getting their train of thought out at all costs before you butt in. Normally these people will fill gaps while they think with very long a loud varying versions of "Errrr", "Ermmmmmm", "Ahhh"... or repeat the next word they think they are going to say until their brain catches up.

I find it very hard to speak to these kinds of people in normal chit-chat situations, because they can sometimes talk for very long periods and cover a million and one things. I find my self having to memorise my replies as they waffle...

So, back to my question, is there a word this or this kind of person? Also although not really what this site is for, any tips on dealing with them :-)

  • 1
    Point of interest: the lower information density of a language (bits per syllable), the faster that language is spoken (syllables per second). And on average, every language communicates about the same amount of information in a given period of time. Because science. – Dan Bron Sep 15 '14 at 16:59
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    Your statement "I find my self having to memorise my replies as they waffle" immediately reminds me of this good quotes: goodreads.com/quotes/… – justhalf Sep 16 '14 at 6:56
  • I found hyperverbalism ("non-stop talking") as a symptom of ADD, but I'm not sure about it as an answer. It sounds pretty obscure. – Brian Jun 29 '16 at 20:47
5

Someone who simply blathers on and on without letting anyone else get a word in edgewise is said to "monopolize the conversation".

Cambridge Dictionary Online defines "monopolize":

"to have or take complete control of something so that others are prevented from sharing it"

  • 2
    Good catch on the fact the OP didn't say "speaking rapidly", only "preventing others from speaking". If that's what he's seeking, I agree with this answer, and think it better than my "motormouth". Regardless of OP's intent, +1 from me. – Dan Bron Sep 15 '14 at 19:48
  • This phrase describes what the person is doing, but does not describe the person. The request was for a word that describes a person who monopolizes the conversation. – GreenAsJade Sep 16 '14 at 8:08
  • @GreenAsJade, it's not a stretch to call the person a conversation monopolizer. – Kristina Lopez Sep 16 '14 at 9:05
  • @Rathony, done. – Kristina Lopez Jul 1 '16 at 18:02
15

I believe the word you're looking for is "motormouth". According to the Cambridge online dictionary:

motormouth: noun [C] UK /ˈməʊ.tə.maʊθ/ US /ˈmoʊ.t̬ə-/

informal, disapproving

a person who talks quickly and continuously, often without considering what they are saying

Similarly, the entry for Motormouth on TVTropes provides the following definition and accompanying image:

A character who speaks if not constantly then often so quickly that it's hard to make out individual words and with the appearance of not having to stop for breath which sometimes makes it sound as though the audio track has been set to Fast Forward...

image of man with speech-balloon densely packed with *blah-blah-blah*

From personal experience: when I was growing up in the 80s US, the best-known motormouth was the guy who sold "micromachines" (very small model cars). I just looked him up on Wikipedia, and his name is, indeed, "Motormouth" John Moschitta.

If you didn't grow up in the 80s US, probably the first image that pops into your head when someone describes a "person who talks very quickly, without pausing" is an auctioneer ("5 dollars from the man in red now 550 from the lady in the hat do I hear six yes six from the man in red do I hear 650 do I hear 650 from the lady in the hat no? going once going twice SOOOOOLD to the man in red for fiiiive fifty!"). And indeed, it turns out an "Alberta motormouth named best auctioneer at Stampede contest".


As for "how to deal with them"? You should thank us for the high-bandwidth connection :)

  • 1
    Point of interest: the lower information density of a language (bits per syllable), the faster that language is spoken (syllables per second). And on average, every language communicates about the same amount of information in a given period of time. Because science. – Dan Bron Sep 15 '14 at 17:11
  • 1
    Talking fast is definitely fitting for "motormouth" but the OP doesn't mention speed, only the inability to not be able to interrupt the speaker due to their filling gaps with errs and umms and stringing topics together. – Kristina Lopez Sep 15 '14 at 18:29
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    @KristinaLopez I've never heard of 'motormouth', but in Britain we usually say 'When he/she starts to talk, it's impossible to get a word in sideways' – WS2 Sep 15 '14 at 19:00
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    @WS2, we have a similar expression in the US, except we say "edgewise" rather than "sideways". – Dan Bron Sep 15 '14 at 20:47
  • 2
    Where I grew up, in the south-east of England, we use something between the two. "I can't get a word in edgeways!" – enashnash Sep 15 '14 at 23:03
3

You might want to consider the word "blatherer", in the first sense (someone who speaks rapidly) rather than the second sense (someone who speaks incoherently).

You may also want to think about:

  • "Prattler" - Someone who talks endlessly.

  • "Gabbler" - Someone who gabbles (Talks rapidly and continuously).

2

overtalker

From urbandictionary.com: A rude person that interrupts people and speaks over them if they don't concede to being interrupted. They generally have a disregard for anything others are talking about. They are known to be loud, obnoxious, and generally inconsiderate of normal social-speaking etiquette.

Also, they will often increase their volume in order to ensure others can't interrupt.

1

Another option is garrulous:

excessively talkative in a rambling, roundabout manner, especially about trivial matters. Dictionary.com

pointlessly or annoyingly talkative Merriam Webstser

Given to excessive and often trivial or rambling talk; tiresomely talkative.The Free Dictionary

protected by user140086 Jun 30 '16 at 4:58

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