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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 49 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Help me keep Brian from doing something regretable.  (Read 1700 times)
Jack Spencer Jr
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« on: July 13, 2003, 09:37:49 AM »

The situation with the other group for Brian outlined in the Social contract stuff Diaries of a Dysfunctional group thread has gone downhill, at least for Brian. Jerry laid it on the wife that he'll be asking Brian to not comeback. The situation is pretty weird, as I imagine most human interaction is.

I can understand that Kat, and probably Jerry were not happy about his post just before their little picnic. That's just bad timing, but conversely it was rather rotten timing for Jerry to tell the wife his decision on this on the morning we were burying her grandmother, like she didn't have enough to think about.

That aside, she really does not want Brian to be kicked out and will probably leave the game herself if that does happen. She's currently got some kind of bid going in to try to get Jerry to reconsider.

The basis for the decision seems strange to me. After Brian's last update, it seemed like a relative peace had been arrived at. To Brian, at least. It seemed like status quo to me. Lots of talking, nothing getting done. But Jerry said he had decided that Brian will not be asked back when the game switches back to Metalfire, or however it's spelled. His reasoning was that since no one said anything for or against him, that it was his decision, that the group had made it his decision. Funny since neither Brian nor the wife recalls anyone being kicked out was an issue on the table. When she pressed him about this later, he did his usual dancing around the question but noted some things his brother-in-law had said.

Jerry's brother-in-law is not  part of the group and, to my knowledge has never even met Brian. All he really knows is what Jerry has told him. But he told Jerry that Brian's playing style has changed much if at all since college and it really doesn't work well with the group.

I sort of agree with this and this leads to the meat here which led me to bother posting this on the Forge.

Basically, Brian has only played with Jerry and most recently me. and that's it. The entire time he was in California, nothing. Most of his playing has been fighting uphill against Jerry.

I recall Jerry telling me about Brian's first playing experience. I think I posted this before, but I relate it again.

A sci-fi game, not that it matter. Brian's character is sleeping on his bed in his room. A bad guy bursts in the door. Brian says:

"I jump out of bed, knock the guy out and go running down the hallway"

Jerry says:

"OK, you're sitting up on the bed."

This is a microcosm for Brian's entire gaming career. Always Brian trying to do *this* and Jerry telling him he can't do *that* for a number of reasons or rationalizations that Jerry presents.

So, with the prospect of being kicked out, Brian says he want to go out in a blaze of glory. He says he wants to confront the group, make each one at least give an answer rather than sitting there looking at their shoes. I can understand that. The behind the back shit has been going on too long in the typical passive-agressive manner. But he also says he wants to make them cry or to say his piece before the cops show up. I don't think that's a good idea.
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Hunter Logan
Member

Posts: 86


« Reply #1 on: July 13, 2003, 09:54:24 AM »

This is a particularly ugly situation, but I think it has all gone beyond the point of no return. Brian's plan is founded in anger and doomed to fail. The back-biting and passive aggression is small and petty. There is no "blaze of glory." If it is as you say, then Brian's only goal is to hurt people. He may succeed in doing this, but he will hurt himself first and last. So, the best thing for him to do is walk away and not look back. I'm sure he can find another game group, and he will be just fine.
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C. Edwards
Member

Posts: 558

savage / sublime


« Reply #2 on: July 13, 2003, 10:57:37 AM »

Hey Jack,

I can be a pretty confrontational guy when something has me riled up. I believe in getting everything out on the table, no matter how ugly. So, after following the threads about this group of people I think that they deserve to have somebody get up in their face and shake things up.

Since I don't know Brian I have no idea if he's the guy for the job. It may not accomplish anything in the long run but not smacking down that kind of shitty behavior when you have the opportunity is just as bad as promoting it yourself. Normally I would suggest that Brian should take a more reasonable approach, but these do not sound the least bit like reasonable people.

Brian has my best wishes on his 'going ape-shit' endeavor.

-Chris
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Ron Edwards
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« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2003, 05:55:27 AM »

Hi there,

One of the difficulties with this thread, Jack, is that Brian is right here at the Forge too. It's hard to tell whether I'm having a dialogue with him or with you, in responding to your post.

So my question is, Brian, are you interested in anyone's point of view for this issue? I'm not talking about advice - which is not the issue - I'm talking about feedback, period.

If so, then I have a comment or two; if not, then the thread oughta be closed.

Best,
Ron
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brianm
Member

Posts: 8


« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2003, 06:34:59 PM »

To Ron Edwards your were having a dialoge with Jack, He just emailed me a link to this discussion.To Ron Edwards your were having a dialoge with Jack, He just emailed me a link to this discussion.

First off I was slightly misquoted  ďa blaze of gloryĒ was not the words I used.  What I said was a blaze of fire, burning bridges that sort of thing, very different meaning.

My strategy if you want to call it that is this:  I show up
(1) Ask jerry whatís this about being kicked out.

(2) Confront the others going around the table one at time if they want me out of the group.
 At this point I donít think any of the others want me out of the group (except kat), and doubt that than any will speak against me.  They avoid confrontation  

(3) At this point jerry will back down or I will share many thought with the group.

To Hunter Logan if I decide to I will hurt a couple of the others far more than I will wound myself.

Thanks C. Edwards I intend to take the kids gloves off and tell it like it is. (if thatís the way things go)  To speak the ugly truth and share my opinions.  I like your line Ē going ape-shit' endeavor. ď

TO Ron Edwards I am happy to hear your points of view; I think I have already decided on a plan of action though.  Or feel free to close the thread if you think itís of no value to anyone else on the site.
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Alan
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Posts: 1012


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« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2003, 08:09:50 PM »

Hi Brian,

If other players do admit they don't want you to leave, and Jerry backs down, what then?  Will you continue to play with this group?  Will the group be any fun to play with after this?
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- Alan

A Writer's Blog: http://www.alanbarclay.com
Ron Edwards
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« Reply #6 on: July 15, 2003, 06:23:36 AM »

Hi Brian,

Seems to me as if your only goal is to strike back at people who you consider to have hurt your feelings (treated you with disrespect).

My point of view - take it or leave it - is that this kind of behavior is pretty low. Never mind what they've done, said, or how they've treated you. As far as I can tell, you don't respect or like them. So why give them any of your time at all? They aren't going to see your point of view or feel bad about anything. The more you burn them, the more they are going to feel righteous.

What I mean by "low" is this: it's the reaction of a teenager whose ego has been injured because of what others say. He wants to hurt them. He wants to make them feel sorry. He wants his ego back the way it was. He cares more about what they think than anything else in the world.

I have no particular vested interest in what you do. I'm not trying to help you, nor to tell you what I think you ought to do next.

I am saying that the people in question seem, based on your and Jack's previous comments, like a pretty marginal, isolated bunch. Why shoot fish in a barrel? Why kick crippled dogs? Why tie yourself to these folks at all?

They didn't steal your money, take your stuff, hurt you physically, or lie about you to others. Any of those things happens, sure - take steps to defend yourself. But this is about your ego, and being rejected from a group that you don't respect anyway. Is rejection such an issue for you, that you resent it even from feebs and fools?

What you describe is more broken social behavior within an already-broken context. It makes you more like them and ties you closer to them.

As I say, do whatever it is you're gonna do. Please don't explain yourself to me further, because your position provokes my contempt. However, if anyone else wants to continue this dialogue with you here, that's OK.

Best,
Ron
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Valamir
Member

Posts: 5574


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« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2003, 07:02:40 AM »

I'd have to echo Ron's comments here.  It seems pretty pointless in the grand scheme of things.  I understand those tendencies well.  When I know I'm right and they're full of shit I want to do the verbal equivelant of throwing them on the ground, planting my knee in the small of their back, twisting their arm and making them scream uncle.  I want to hear them say "you're right, we're wrong".  

Thing is, that's completely petty, unenlightened, and pointless.

Its not ego, its the absence of a healthy ego.  

Healthy ego says "I know I'm right and these people are full of shit.  I've heard and evaluated the situation and am comfortable with my conclusion.  I can walk away satisfied that I'm the bigger person.  I don't care if they think I'm to blame and that I'm the one whose wrong, because they are small petty people whose opinion means zero to me".

Unhealthy ego says "I need to hear them say it.  I need to see them squirm before I can feel good about myself".  That simply says to me that you aren't confident you're right.  You aren't confident that you've reached the right decision.  You're indecisive and looking for confirmation and reinforcement from people you believe you can browbeat that confirmation and reinforcement out of."

The latter is a very sucky place to be.
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Jack Spencer Jr
Guest
« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2003, 08:33:36 AM »

You guys realize that you've just stroked *my* ego pretty good for leaving the way I did. I pretty much decided it's not worth it and I stopped going. Jerry thinks I'm a RPG snob and I don't care.

Well, part of me cares. Part of me want to go over there and go Carrie on their asses. Blast them all with my telekenetic powers and tear their souls apart with my funky chains that come out of the darknest.

But it's not worth it.
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Alan
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Posts: 1012


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« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2003, 09:02:46 AM »

The best revenge is living well.

Go and create a functional group with other people.
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- Alan

A Writer's Blog: http://www.alanbarclay.com
J B Bell
Member

Posts: 267


« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2003, 05:46:36 PM »

What Ron said, and I'd like to add just a bit.

It's true that living well is the best revenge--it's also true that leaving relatively gracefully will give you access later in life to what is still good in the people you're in opposition to now.  Even if they don't see it now it will secure your reputation as a cool-headed person who isn't into shitting on others, even when they behave badly towards you.  The people who have hurt your feelings (and I don't use that phrase meaning to trivialize the experience) must have seen something of value in you to be your friend, and they're more likely to remember it if you don't give them extra reasons to be self-righteous about your departure.

So when your paths cross again (as is likely, it's a small world), what they'll remember is your dignity, not your "blaze", and they'll feel they can approach you for renewed friendship.  I've gone both ways and I have lasting regrets for the times I went out with fire instead of just leaving in peace.  When everyone is older and hopefully wiser you'll be able to pick up again on the good parts without having to slog through fixing a bunch of "issues" created by a nasty parting.

Decent behavior isn't just about helping your present reputation, it's an investment.
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"Have mechanics that focus on what the game is about. Then gloss the rest." --Mike Holmes
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