An unlikely story

(Topic ID: 228439)

An unlikely story


By swampfire

3 months ago



Topic Stats

  • 32 posts
  • 23 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 months ago by WolfManCat
  • Topic is favorited by 3 Pinsiders

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    11
    #1 3 months ago

    There are a few good lessons in this long post, and if you want to skip to the TL;DR at the end I won’t blame you.

    I’m on week 4 of 5 weeks in Philly for work (I live in GA). I was planning to meet some coworkers in Fishtown (in Philadelphia), but that fell through. Fortunately, the original Barcade in Fishtown has great beer, and even better pins. I got my first beer, and put 4 tokens into Dr. Dude, and that’s when things went horribly, horribly wrong.

    Details are important here, so I’ll first point out that someone had walked away from ball 2. I played that game out, and it was fine. Then 4 tokens, press start, plunge. I tried to do a live catch and the ball bounced into the outhole. The flippers were stone dead, not moving at all. I hit the buttons a few more times to make sure. What I did next was bad: I power-cycled the game. I pressed start again. Again, the ball bounced off my dead flippers and into the outhole. This time, I decided the game was broken and I turned it off, for 2 reasons:

    1. If it were my game, I would want it to be off so that no more damage could happen (my Space Station’s MPU caught fire once, when a pop bumper locked on).
    2. This would let the location know that something was wrong with the game.

    Just then, the owner of the game walked up, keys in hand. He asked “Why’d you turn off the game?” I say, “The flippers are dead, I lost 4 tokens already.” He turns the game on, adds a credit. And the Flippers. Are. Working. Fine. In fact, they worked great the rest of the night.

    This gentleman took me aside and gently said, “Can I ask you not to play any more games tonight?” I was gutted. I had $10 in tokens in my pocket and I was just getting started on my lonely night. I sputtered and stammered and did a terrible job trying to explain myself. “Maybe there’s a bridge rectifier that’s marginal! That’s what my last 3 pin repairs were!” He didn’t believe me. I WOULD NOT HAVE BELIEVED ME.

    I stepped out to cool down for a while and I saw him again. I asked him to check to see if there was a loose or nearly-broken wire on one of the coils. He wasn’t in a mood to talk to me, and who could blame him? He thought I was trying to scam some free games, AND I had turned off a perfectly good game.

    By then, I was absolutely gutted. It was the first conversation I’d had in a month with someone outside work, a fellow pinball collector/enthusiast, but I’m in the doghouse. The loneliness of 4 months away from home is kicking in hard, and I’ve got a big knot in my throat. I went back in and played out my tokens, and to his credit he didn’t throw me out on my ass. The games, as usual, were perfect. JJPOTC was good to me, and I earned 1 free game.

    On the way home on the train, I was super depressed. A young girl announced to the whole train that she was hungry, and after a long silence, I gave her $5. It made me feel a little better, but still. At work, I’m the oldest guy in my group by over a decade, desperately trying to fit in. I’ve got nobody here. I have my iPad and my AppleTV.

    I want to thank the guy at Barcade for being sort of kind to me, even though he had no reason to be. And I’ll say that these are the best location games in Philly (there’s not much location pinball here).

    TL;DR:

    1. Never turn off a location game for ANY reason
    2. Please don’t assume someone is lying just because the circumstantial evidence is heavily against them.
    3. There are a lot of lonely people in the world, and a little kindness means more than you can possibly imagine

    #2 3 months ago

    As someone who is out of town a lot, I can relate to the loneliness on the road. Thanks for sharing, those are some good takeways.

    #3 3 months ago

    Look on the bright side:

    Your not stuck in China for months with 0 pins nearby...

    Have you started talking to yourself, mostly because you are the only person who understands what your saying?

    LOL

    #4 3 months ago
    Quoted from BobLangelius:

    Look on the bright side:
    Your not stuck in China for months with 0 pins nearby...
    Have you started talking to yourself, mostly because you are the only person who understands what your saying?
    LOL

    I’m sorry Bob, but that did cheer me up. I hope you get to go home soon.

    #5 3 months ago

    Did the out of town thing for a long stint once. I feel your pain. Hang in there.

    Maybe reach out to a local Pinsider for a pinball session at that same place. See if they could meet you there.
    Heck they might invite you to their home arcade - I've done that before

    Always more fun playing with others

    #6 3 months ago

    Dont sweat it Swampfire, you didnt burt anything or mean to make anyone mad. Maybe the best thing would have been to go tell someone about the game instead of taking matters into your own hands but you didn't hurt anything.

    You are a good guy and that was nice of you to give the girl some money for food, hopefully that's what she used it for. Keep your chin up buddy!

    #7 3 months ago

    I have to admit, I played about 5 more games on Dr. Dude to try to get it break again. It just mocked me. Lol.

    #8 3 months ago
    Quoted from swampfire:

    I have to admit, I played about 5 more games on Dr. Dude to try to get it break again. It just mocked me. Lol.

    Isn't that how it always works?

    #9 3 months ago

    Heck, there's gotta be a few fellow pinsiders that'll invite you for a couple home games.
    I can't stand traveling for work. I won't do it anymore. It's not worth it anymore to me.

    #10 3 months ago

    Job markets are weird. In Atlanta where I worked for 30 years, I’m competing with thousands of Georgia Tech grads. Nobody wants an old dude like me. In Philly I’m able to prove myself, and I think I’m able to hold my own with Kubernetes, Docker, etc. I’m pretty happy overall, despite the loneliness. It definitely beats endless interviews where I’m told “this is a more junior position, you should probably keep looking”.

    Getting back on topic, system 11 is such a love/hate thing for me. My Space Station is still down.

    #11 3 months ago

    If you are ever passing through Chicago, shoot me a PM.

    #12 3 months ago

    Don't let the guy get you down. I think it was rude of him to tell you not to play any more games.

    I turn off location games (and turn them back on) that are messed up all the time. It's typically at freeplay arcades, however.

    #13 3 months ago
    Quoted from SheriffBarclay:

    Don't let the guy get you down. I think it was rude of him to tell you not to play any more games. He can EAD.
    I turn off location games that are messed up all the time.

    I rebooted a few JJP games on site to clear out stuck light boards a few times.

    Wow being kicked out for Turing a game off and not an next time you have issue tell someone?

    #14 3 months ago

    The owner of the game was polite, a little upset but pretty nice about it. I was only bummed out about the situation. It’s like when you’re watching a serious foreign film and your wife walks in for the 30 seconds when people are having sex on screen. There's nothing you can really say to make it better.

    #15 3 months ago
    Quoted from BobLangelius:

    Look on the bright side:
    Your not stuck in China for months with 0 pins nearby...
    Have you started talking to yourself, mostly because you are the only person who understands what your saying?
    LOL

    Where in China are you hanging out?

    #17 3 months ago

    sorry you had this experience and really just needed a friend. If you are ever in madison for work, hit me up. Games on me and we will play all night and session some out if you want. We have over 50 on route and 5 spots to pick from. Serious offer, just give me a heads up in advance.

    I travel for work sometimes also and it can suck.

    #18 3 months ago
    Quoted from swampfire:

    There are a few good lessons in this long post, and if you want to skip to the TL;DR at the end I won’t blame you.
    I’m on week 4 of 5 weeks in Philly for work (I live in GA). I was planning to meet some coworkers in Fishtown (in Philadelphia), but that fell through. Fortunately, the original Barcade in Fishtown has great beer, and even better pins.

    If you feel like taking a drive, we have a nice location in Harrisburg which is about 90 minutes from Philly depending on where exactly you're at. The bar has 7 games and I'd be more than happy to meet you for a drink...or 3.

    Not sure if you want to drive that far or not.

    #19 3 months ago

    Hey, swampfire, sounds to me like you handled it pretty calmly in any case. You explained the situation intelligently but his head was too far up his ass to listen. So don't let it get you down.

    If I was in your place and the guy didn't want me playing his games anymore, what I'd probably done is pull that fistful of tokens out of my pocket and say to him: "You want to refund these, then? 'Cause otherwise I'm not leaving until they're all played off."

    But that's just me (perhaps more so in my younger days than now)...

    #20 3 months ago

    Hey guys, I got a really nice PM today from the owner of these games. Like I said, he’s a very decent guy and I would probably have reacted the same way (or much worse) if someone turned off my coin-op game that was working perfectly. Please support Barcade by checking out these awesome games if you’re in the area.

    Thanks for all these notes of support too. I’m not at all depressed right now, just looking forward to going home next Friday, so I can play my new Laser Cue!

    #21 3 months ago

    Man, I can tell you it's bummed me out when the businesses have treated me like I'm a liar. I once told them I turned off a game because it wasn't working, and they accused me of being the one who turned it on. Like, why would I do that? I don't feel like wasting my money on a broken game.

    A different time, I was having my best game ever on Attack From Mars. It was 30 minutes from closing time, and the security guy told me "last game of the night" - I was still playing that credit 15 minutes later, had a 17 billion score, and he accused me of starting a new game and lying about it. It was such a bummer being accused of being a liar. I stopped going because who needs that when you're looking to have fun?

    #22 3 months ago

    I don't get it, how can turning it on/off scam free games? Hmm, better not answer,then everyone will know it.

    #23 3 months ago

    Hey, I just want to be clear. The guy reached out and apologized to me, which he didn’t really need to do. It’s a happy ending! Those can happen on Pinside sometimes. Enjoy your weekends everyone.

    #24 3 months ago
    Quoted from swampfire:

    Hey, I just want to be clear. The guy reached out and apologized to me, which he didn’t really need to do. It’s a happy ending! Those can happen on Pinside sometimes. Enjoy your weekends everyone.

    Very cool. He must be on Pinside!
    Pinsiders are the best (most of them)!

    #25 3 months ago

    I once turned a DE Hook off at a party, there was a little bit of a smoke smell , the guy turned it back on said he diddnt smell it.
    He acted grumpy an like i was trying to be a wiseguy or something.
    Few minutes later someone reported smoke comming under the glass at the left bottom
    Kickback coil fried and board dammage.

    I would always be greatfull if you turn my stuff of to protect it!
    And i wil always turn off a pin in need of my help

    #26 3 months ago
    Quoted from Toucanf16:

    Where in China are you hanging out?

    Nanjing for me - I spend two months per year there. No pinball in sight...
    May be we could start the Chinese Pinball Club? (Lucky you, you have an arcade nearby in Hong-Kong!)

    Quoted from swampfire:

    Enjoy your weekends everyone.

    And thanks for sharing your story!

    12
    #27 3 months ago

    You just went to the wrong place... here’s how you make week 5 better :

    Go to Pinball Gallery in Malvern, PA just north of the city. Bill and Sherry Disney are great hosts and friends. 60 plus pinballs and all sorts of other arcade games. And the best : plenty of people at all hours of day and night to hang out with (oh and they are all probably a little obsessed with pinball)...

    AND... If you PM me your name I’m contacting Pinball Gallery and buying you an all day pass on PinballSTAR that will be waiting for you at the front desk. I know money wasn’t your issue, but now you have no excuse to not get there and enjoy a day / night of pinball amongst friends you just don’t know yet.. I hope you take me up on it.

    Joe Newhart / PinballSTAR

    Pinball Gallery :
    http://www.pinballgallery.net/

    #28 3 months ago

    If you are ever in ATL hit me up.

    #29 3 months ago
    Quoted from pinnyheadhead:

    If you are ever in ATL hit me up.

    He lives here silly.

    #30 3 months ago

    Congrats on not escalating the sit and getting a perma-ban. It sucks to have to dress incognito just to sneak in and play pinball. I was almost thrown out of EightyTwo in LA last year for aggressive nudging. It is easy to become enraged when you are asked to stand down and you don’t feel in the wrong. But it is usually best to acquiesce and change to meet the demands of management.

    My biggest regret when traveling was missing my pets. I could talk to the spouse on the phone but was kept in the dark about the everyday stupid stuff my pets did and I missed.

    #31 3 months ago
    Quoted from PinballSTAR:

    AND... If you PM me your name I’m contacting Pinball Gallery and buying you an all day pass on PinballSTAR that will be waiting for you at the front desk.

    What a cool thing to offer for a fellow pinballer. I don't know you, but I like your style! Nice way to help swamp find a new place to play and to hopefully make some new friends. Well done sir!

    Dave

    #32 3 months ago

    Sucks when people won't give you the benefit of the doubt, especially when you intentions were nothing but good. It would be nice if people had more open hearts, but with all the bad out there its no surprise many of those hearts have hardened shut.

    Glad the operator let you play out your quarters and even reached out to you later. He really should have believed you in the first place though. Not sure why anybody with the intent of ripping somebody off (for a few bucks) would go to such lengths in explaining themselves.

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