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Subject: People interrupting your games rss

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Michael Yohe
United States
Austin
Texas
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I like to play at local shops with a friend of mine. We usually pick from the large demo racks and try stuff. But more than once someone has come up to us and just started talking. Usually about board games, but not always. I once was held hostage by a 19-year-old kid who wouldn't stop talking about an MMO called "Aion." I know some of the people that frequent game stores aren't social butterflies, and some are awkward, and some are trying to make friends in the only place they can relate to others. I get all of that but...I don't know. We just hate it. We really hate being interrupted. A few nights ago a woman just straight up sat at our table and started talking about her favorite books on board games. We were courteous and cordial, while inwardly seething and wishing it would end. It's worth noting that this shop has little orange cones that you put on the table if you're looking for more people. We did not have one on our table.

I guess the alternative is to buy the games (don't get me wrong, I do own some games myself) and play in my living room, but we like being out of our apartments. One of these places is a board game cafe, and we enjoy getting some tea and sitting at nice big tables and playing a game. NOT on a couch hunched over a too-small coffee table with my cat jumping on the board. Plus, neither of us is in a position to buy tons and tons of games. These demo racks are perfect for us.

I brought up to my friend after our last incident that maybe we're the problem. Maybe we're antisocial monsters. I don't know. I would never think of ruining someone's game like that. A quick interaction isn't bad at all but we're talking about people who inject themselves directly into your board gaming time.

It's really easy to just say "Tell them nicely to go away" but we all know that nobody does that. I certainly don't. I don't think I have it in me to be mean like that. I might have to start, though. So how do you feel when you're playing a game in public and people just start talking to you for extended periods of time? Does it happen to others? How (if at all) do you deal with it?
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James Ludlow
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"Sorry, we're trying to focus. Would you care to learn the rules and join us?"

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Pasi Ojala
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Make a plaque:

Game in progress,
please respect the people playing.
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jdludlow wrote:
"Sorry, we're trying to focus. Would you care to learn the rules and join us?"



Not a bad idea.
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Stefan Wijns
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If this can comfort you a bit: most people I know (including myself) think and act the same way as you. During boardgames, while fishing, etc...
Another continent, same problems. Guess it's a small world.
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Alison Mandible
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superfierostatus wrote:
It's really easy to just say "Tell them nicely to go away" but we all know that nobody does that. I certainly don't. I don't think I have it in me to be mean like that.


If you think of it as "being mean", you definitely won't be able to do it kindly. You're actually just setting a boundary. You're allowed to do that.

Ideas:

- "I'm sorry, I can't do two things at once. I'm going to go back to focusing on the game. Nice to meet you!"

- "We were enjoying playing just the two of us. Could I ask for some space?"

- "So, you interrupted us in mid-game-- can I ask whether there was something in particular you needed?"

- "Hey, so, I am not looking for a new MMO. Somebody else might be a better audience."

- "Please let us play our game."
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Pete
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This is why I dwell in my basement.

Pete (also thinks fresh air might be hazardous to his health)
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Joseph Schmoll
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I think Pete just invited you to use his basement.

But seriously, these are all good tips. Asking nicely isn't mean, and if taken that way by them, it's not your fault.

I actually like the idea of inviting them too. Unfortunately, since you're using their space you may have to deal with issues like this. But these are great ideas and hopefully you find one that clicks.
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Bryan Thunkd
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You only have to lick someone once and they'll avoid you forever.
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Atnier Rodriguez
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Thunkd wrote:
You only have to lick someone once and they'll avoid you forever.


Rule #2: Double-lick (just in case)
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Read the rulebook, plan for all contingencies, and…read the rulebook again.
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To the OP: Take it as a back-handed compliment. You looked like friendly folks that wouldn't mind a chat in the middle of a game.

Now if scruffy ol' me were at your table playing, she woulda dropped in on someone else.
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Sam Carroll
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In almost every episode of Seinfeld, you can find a point where someone (usually either Jerry or Elaine) could avoid a ton of trouble by displaying a little intestinal fortitude and being direct. And, of course, they never do, hence the humor of the show.

For example: "Oh, by the way, you never told me your name when you started making out with me in the supermarket. What's your name?"

So don't be Seinfeldian; instead, be direct. The person interrupting you is being rude; you don't have to sit there and listen to them. It's OK to tell them (politely, of course) that you're busy and you'd like some space.

Quote:
It's really easy to just say "Tell them nicely to go away" but we all know that nobody does that.


So be the first!
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Nibble Wut?
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It's a public space, where social interaction is a risk you'll have to take - go somewhere remote and unpopulated if it offends you so. Chances are, if you're not spending much money, they've been sent by management to try and encourage you to actually buy the game and take it home already laugh
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George Louie
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stop using deodorant.. or eat more beans!!

If you want to be totally non-confrontational, just ignore them.

or you could try to put a positive spin on it, and say "wow!! I'd love to chat about with you more, how about you stop back in a couple of hours when I'm finished my game."
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Stephen Williams
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superfierostatus wrote:

It's really easy to just say "Tell them nicely to go away" but we all know that nobody does that. I certainly don't. I don't think I have it in me to be mean like that.


If a completely random person I didn't know just sat down at a table where me and my friends were playing a game, I absolutely would tell them to go away. Politely, of course. It's not mean as long as you say please.

superfierostatus wrote:

So how do you feel when you're playing a game in public and people just start talking to you for extended periods of time? Does it happen to others? How (if at all) do you deal with it?


I've never had a complete stranger sit down at our table mid-game and start chatting. I've had friends do it, but they usually know enough to not talk the entire time while we're playing.

There was one guy I knew who always talked while playing the game we had sat down (together) to play, though. Frequently when he was supposed to be taking his turn. I just kept politely reminding him to take his turn instead of responding to the rambling commentary. That gaming group wrapped up recently, so the problem resolved itself before I had to take more drastic action, though.
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Mike Beiter
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I hate getting interrupted mid game. Thankfully I send out a "Do not talk to me and get the BEEP away from me" vibe to strangers and even friends in some cases when I am focused on a game.

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Pete
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You could learn to fart on command...

Pete (has been trying for decades but just can't manage it)
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James
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plezercruz wrote:
You could learn to fart on command...

Pete (has been trying for decades but just can't manage it)


This must be a terrible, yet tried and true, solution.

Jim (assumes Pete has a friend named "Command")
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Josh Chen
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parp wrote:
It's a public space, where social interaction is a risk you'll have to take - go somewhere remote and unpopulated if it offends you so.


Pretty much this. Maybe this is why I am afraid to go game at public places so I game at home. Board game meetups doesn't really fit into the OP's situation.

You probably should just tell them to leave you alone or just ignore them. They will get the message.

If you take the high road, why not try to "evangelize" our hobby and try to get them into the hobby?
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Ben Parker
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a1bert wrote:
Make a plaque:

Game in progress,
please respect the people playing.


Or just "Beware: rude gamers in progress"

Our game base is my friend's share house, so there are often housemates who come in and chat about unrelated things. That's just life, man. It hardly ever happened when I played at the game store. People just weren't that friendly.
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Michael Yohe
United States
Austin
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I'M the rude one? They're the rude ones. If you've never been subjected to this than maybe it's not your place to say.

Also, housemates =\= random strangers seemingly with Aspergers Syndrome.
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Thunkd wrote:
You only have to lick someone once and they'll avoid you forever.


With the OP's seeming bad luck these people would like it. shake
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Craig H
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MajaiofDreams wrote:
I hate getting interrupted mid game. Thankfully I send out a "Do not talk to me and get the BEEP away from me" vibe to strangers and even friends in some cases when I am focused on a game.



Do you give seminars ? That sounds like a really useful skill to learn !

I have more trouble with some of my friend-opponents talking to me during my turn. Sometimes I've been tempted to obviously show that I am no longer thinking one bit about the game and focus 100% on what they are saying - maybe they would get the hint.

I have had what the OP described happen a few times though and also asked "maybe I'm the odd one as most people seem to enjoy social interaction" But then I decided nah, I'm right in being annoyed !
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wayne r
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I've had that happen infrequently. There are a couplel ways I personally handle it:

1. Just ignore him completely. I don't respond. I don't face him. Basically, I don't acknowledge the perp is even there. usually they get the message with that cold shoulder stance.

2. I indirectly let the perp know that he is distracting by telling my fellow gamers out loud that we need to focus to finish this game either due to time constraint or to move onto a different game.
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Michael Yohe
United States
Austin
Texas
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MajaiofDreams wrote:
I hate getting interrupted mid game. Thankfully I send out a "Do not talk to me and get the BEEP away from me" vibe to strangers and even friends in some cases when I am focused on a game.



This is what I try sometimes, but dude these people just don't get it. I think the core issue is that board game stores attract a higher than normal population of socially awkward and inexperienced people. Higher chance of them being unable to read body language or understand a tone.
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