So there I was, yet again, wandering about among hundreds of people with nothing to say to any of them. I started thinking about what it is that people talk about...what is "small talk"? And I think I figured out my problem. I have worked very hard not to have any opinions. Without opinion,s you don't get in to fights with people about religion or politics or sports. And without opinions you don't become some overbearing boor who imposes some (usually incorrect and more usually boring if not downright offensive) ill thought out point of view about a current events story that I have never even heard of.
But the flip side of not having that strong opinion is that I have nothing to engage anyone about. Someone walks up and says "how's things" and I say "getting by" and that's about it. If he brings up elections, a local team or something spiritual, I usually beg out. Not that I don't have, deep inside, some preference, feelings or opinion, but these conversations are never the kind which lead to any persuasion, conclusion or really anything productive. So I demure and the conversation dies out. It isn't that I'm not deep or am inarticulate, it is just that I find most people and their opinions either beneath my level of discourse, or above it enough that I would rather devote the proper time, attention and energy to discussing it.
So without opinions that I have any interest in sharing, I'm stuck not having anyone to talk to as just filler conversation.