Experience/ de-escalation of conflict
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Thread: Experience/ de-escalation of conflict

  1. #1
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    Experience/ de-escalation of conflict

    Day before yesterday I was in my favorite barbecue joint for lunch by myself. I sat all the way in the back as far as I could on the two top tables as is my habit. I can see the front door, the cash register and was close to the exit.

    There was one table for six sort of behind me to the left in the corner. This enormous gelatinous galoot comes walking through the restaurant with an overstuffed backpack and he just looked weird. I studied him carefully as he walked by and then he sat facing the back wall and was fishing around in his backpack. I was watching him intently at this point when he switched sides of the table , pulled out a big laptop and looked directly at me and said in a loud voice “what are you looking at?”

    As he pulled out the laptop I thought to myself “here I go again“ being very concerned I would have to fight this knucklehead about twice my size and a third my age.

    I used a line that has saved my ass more than once, I said to him “are you a movie actor? I swear I’ve seen you in the movies“ he smiled and I realized everything was OK. Back in the day I probably would’ve told him I was looking at an enormous gelatinous Creeper with a backpack and a fight would have started. It’s amazing how the aging process teaches us a few things.

    I pass this on because it has helped me get out of a pickle more than once and it never seems to miss.
    Last edited by Shark1007; 02-01-2020 at 02:13 PM.

  2. #2
    Distinguished Member deadeyedick's Avatar
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    That's not how I would have handled that situation...but your method was probably smarter.

    I'd have likely said something like, "What are you, stupid or blind? I'm looking right at you."
    "It's Fumbles...it was always Fumbles."

    Dr. Calvin "Fumbles" Killshot

  3. #3
    Distinguished Member racer88's Avatar
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    Love it. Great line. Filing away in the brain, but hopefully won't have to use it.
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  5. #4
    Senior Member rayman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shark1007 View Post
    Day before yesterday I was in my favorite barbecue joint for lunch by myself. I sat all the way in the back as far as I could on the two top tables as is my habit. I can see the front door, the cash register and was close to the exit.

    There was one table for six sort of behind me to the left in the corner. This enormous gelatinous galoot comes walking through the restaurant with an overstuffed backpack and he just looked weird. I studied him carefully as he walked by and then he sat facing the back wall and was fishing around in his backpack. I was watching him intently at this point when he switched sides of the table , pulled out a big laptop and looked directly at me and said in a loud voice “what are you looking at?”

    As he pulled out the laptop I thought to myself “here I go again“ being very concerned I would have to fight this knucklehead about twice my size and a third my age.

    I used a line that has saved my ass more than once, I said to him “are you a movie actor? I swear I’ve seen you in the movies“ he smiled and I realized everything was OK. Back in the day I probably would’ve told him I was looking at an enormous gelatinous Creeper with a backpack and a fight would have started. It’s amazing how the aging process teaches us a few things.

    I pass this on because it has helped me get out of a pickle more than once and it never seems to miss.
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  6. #5
    Distinguished Member bladenbullet's Avatar
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    not hard to imagine he was noticing you staring at him and wondering..."am i gonna have to fight this old guy"...anyone ever think that youre not the only one that pays attention to whatever goes on around you and you may be much more obvious than you realize...

    oh...and congratulations for deescalating a situation you created...
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    Who knows, but glad I didn’t wind up ruining my lunch. I was really sweating what he had in the backpack and his appearance. When I left, he waved.

    If that was intended as snarky, I don’t go there. Maybe I can get some dark glasses.

  8. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by racer88 View Post
    Love it. Great line. Filing away in the brain, but hopefully won't have to use it.
    That makes two of us. Great tactic for de-escalating the situation, shark!
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  10. #9
    Distinguished Member XDMan's Avatar
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    I’m glad it worked out, but if you’ve used this line several times, then you need to work on being situationally aware without letting others be aware.
    When the music stops playing, I don't want to be caught without a chair.

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    Actually, I’ve used it twice before. Once when a rather buxom woman was creating a scene in a drug store and saw my wife staring in amazement. Same line, same result. Things like that.

    I thought I would pass it out in case someone might use it to avoid a conflict as I have learned a few things from others.

    It’s like a position I used to take when testifying as an expert witness as to amount of hours an attorney spent on a case. When they would inevitably ask “ don’t you think .... hours were a bit excessive?” I would reply “ordinarily I would, but seeing that you were the opposition and knowing the caliber of your talent and work, they needed every hour they could to avoid a loss” The response was almost always “thanks, Roger” I think conflict avoidance is our first and best defense.

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