(FAQ) What if your opponent is an ass?

(About the Author)

Some players are so wrapped up in their own world, they can't even recognize other players as being worthy of respect. In previous decades, you could walk into any pool hall and watch some of these arrogant SOBs strut their stuff in their own little kingdoms.

Nowadays, the worst cases have been relegated to little hole-in-the-wall bars and dives. But there are always wanna-be bullies who couldn't recognize common courtesy if it was <insert an appropriate simile here>. 😉

Anyway, we all have played shooters who make extra efforts for us to dislike them. Routine activities include poor table courtesy (interrupting your line of thinking while shooting), Basically, every day you don't see the individual is a blessing from heaven.

Places with pool tables look unkindly upon individuals who take their aggression and confrontations from the table to a physical level. Such activities can get you kicked out or even banned from playing. Not to mention, that these types of elevated activities tend to draw in nearby buddies, ready to helpfully make their muscles available.

Generally, upon finding yourself face to face with such a person, maintain a facade of disinterested courtesy. Hold tight onto your temper. Keep the communication to a minimum, and do not let your mental cleverness with insults escape your control. Such words is wasted on the less fortunate in the mental department (plus it tends to generate swift movements of things, such as fists, feet, etc.).

At a certain point, you may have to take additional action. In a league match, ask the team captains to bring the feral beast under control. If they cannot settle the problem, simply withdraw from the match. Also file a formal complaint to the league operator/manager. Provide as much detail as possible and copy the information to both team captains.

In a pool hall, your familiarity with the manager can get him/her involved in bringing the situation under control and back to a level of civil discourse. But, if you're in a strange place, you are already tagged as the victim of a crime scene. Take a potty break and get out. Abandon your sneaky pete and any money on the table. Use the experience as a lesson to stay out of such environments.

Just as you learn from mistakes on the table and make changes in your fundamentals, also apply some of that common sense learning process to how you handle opponents. It's a rough and tumble world out there, with obvious and hidden dangers. Keep your wits about you and learn how to play with opponents of all personalities.

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