I had to explain what pinball is to someone who's never heard of it

By PBandJelly

August 03, 2023

This story got frontpaged on August 10, 2023

51 days ago

On the way to play pinball at TimeWarp in Seattle, I ran into a friend who asked me what I'm doing. I said "about to go play pinball."

"What's pinball?"

He didn't know what pinball was - had never heard of it. (He's in his 50s, so... I don't know why.)

I was stumped by having to develop an improv explanation for someone with no preconceived notion.

"It's um... an arcade game. It's a table with metal balls and flipper paddles in it, and you hit the balls through an obstacle course built into the tabletop. You have to keep hitting the balls to keep them away from a hole where you lose them into the machine. It has music, graphics, and flashing lights. There are many different machines, and they are each designed based on a story - like a movie, or a popular band."

I don't think I communicated very well. I don't think that guy really knows what pinball is based on my description. 

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41 days ago

Show him some videos and pictures.

40 days ago

Your wasting your time if he doesn't know what pinball is. I'm 75 and i have a godzilla, ghostbusters, the walking dead, and where it all began for me with a balls-a-poppin.

26 days ago

Utterly bizarre that guy is in his 50s and didn’t know what pinball is. Praying for him.

18 days ago

I was so taken aback by the entire situation that I became flustered and confused in the moment!

15 days ago

Punch him in the face

7 days ago

Should have asked him what his favorite movies are until he hit a title that has a pin. Then, pull out your phone, hit up YouTube and show him a tutorial video. Explanation done.

11 hours ago

I remember going to the bank once to wire some money and when the lady setting up the transfer asked what the money was for, she didn't understand what I meant when I said a pinball machine. She might've been in her 40s or 50s, but that's the only time I encountered someone who didn't know what pinball was. With the amount of money I was sending, I think she was concerned I was being conned. :)

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