I’ve noted before that sociologists view sports as a microcosm of society. This can definitely be said of baseball – and while I have no direct proof of what was happening behind the scenes at the Bowie Baysox game Wednesday night, the interaction between Ryan Flaherty and his fellow Baysox players certainly seemed to reflect coworker interactions we’ve all experienced.
Flaherty, who was on a rehab assignment with the Baysox, finished his work for the evening after the seventh inning. As he walked off the field, he stopped to talk to some teammates on his way to the clubhouse:
What happened next, perhaps only Ryan knows, but if baseball imitates life, I imagine it went something like this: Ryan stopped to talk to his teammates. They were friendly, perhaps even having a great conversation. But at some point, maybe that conversation started getting a little too long, and Ryan found himself trying to figure out how to extricate himself from his overly chatty coworker. I mean, we’ve all been there haven’t we? We’ve all had to deal with one of those coworkers.
I watched the action unfold from across the ballpark. At first, Ryan seemed to get in to the conversation, and sets his gear down:
The conversation drags on; Ryan untucks his shirt and starts to fidget and stretch:
But the coworker keeps talking, so he tries paying more attention to something – anything – than the conversation at hand, like watching the game (this is a common tactic designed to send the message to the overly chatty person that you have better things to do):
Perhaps he even tried to say goodbye and make his escape as another player walked by:
But, alas, Ryan wasn’t the one who was able to escape, and now he’s wondering how else he might disentangle himself:
So he tries backing away slowly, though the world appears to be speeding by as he’s stuck in place:
The next strategy is usually to keep backing away from the person who won’t stop talking, looking uncomfortable if you think it will help:
If it doesn’t work, you might have to resign yourself to being stuck there a little while longer:
But keep hoping someone else will come by to save you:
Then, slowly start making your move to escape again:
When you seen an opportunity, get out of there as fast as you can:
It matters not if someone else gets stuck with your chatty coworker – at least you have saved yourself:
Happy Friday! Enjoy some time off from your coworkers!