Standing around with strangers in social scenarios can be just the worst. You have no common ground other than that moment's current awkwardness. Cool. Here's a trick that will help you determine a lot about the person: "what are you listening to these days?".
I employed said strategy at DTHB to my friends husband. Prior to the conversation, I thought he might die of social anxiety, but music made up the ground between us. I was England. He was France. Our musical common ground served as the Chunnel connecting our distant worlds. As a bonus, he totally blew my mind with the weirdness of an answer.
He told me to listen to Canada's Timber Timbre. "It's a guy with a guitar and a kick drum. There's a woman who plays violin, too." WHAT?! I went home and found this gem:
Creep On Creepin' On is the album all this weird stuff happens and it's rad.