One way that Americans move quickly from small to big talk is holding events centered around a common theme. These themes can be anything from the Information in Engineering Conference to MerCon (a mermaid-themed conference). At these conferences, it’s customary for people to only use a little small talk, then quickly segue into big talk based on the conference theme.
One of the best known examples of one of these events is Comic Con.
The first Comic Con was held in San Diego in 1970, when a group of comic and science fiction fans decided to showcase some of their favorite comic books and other forms of popular art.
The one day event was such a large success, attracting about 100 people, that its founders decided to throw a three day convention later that year (which attracted over 300 people).
Over the decades, Comic Cons have become so popular that they can be found all over the world, and some of the bigger events can have more than 200,000 people in attendance.