No one knows etiquette anymore

A couple weeks ago, my lovely bride mailed an invitation for a dinner party to a half-dozen friends. The invite clearly stated, in big bold letters: "RSVP". After three days, no one had replied. She became distraught, sure in her knowledge that our friends abandoned us.

For the uncultured out there who may be reading this (though I have a hard time envisioning that any readers of this blog may be considered "uncultured"), RSVP is short for the French phrase, répondez s'il vous plaît  - translated, this means: "Please respond". Further translated for the truly dense: "Yo, dude - tell me if you're coming to the party, for reals."

On the day and appointed time for the party, all six of our friends show up, gleefully unaware of their social faux pas.

No one knows etiquette anymore, apparently.

The joke was on them, though. My wife prepared nothing for dinner.

Back to the Belts

Yesterday, I noticed that my stores of minerals were running low. Well, actually, I tried to start a manufacturing job and I got an error message.

"Oh," says I to myself. "I'm out of tritanium. Time to mine, I guess." 

I log onto my mining alt, hop into a Mack, undock, and head for an asteroid belt.  

I often do this during working  hours. I have my company-assigned laptop running Outlook and Skype, upon which I conduct my business. And right next to it is my big PC on which I play EVE Online, at the same time. Mining in high sec space is an easy thing to do when I'm working. I often will be stripping roids to nothing while having conference calls with colleagues in Beijing and Brussels. I just need to remember to keep the sound turned down during my calls.

I forgot to do this once, which was a bit difficult to explain.

Me: "So, gentlemen, it appears that we are on schedule and on budget for this project, and that we should complete the first phase of the implementation on time." 

PC (loudly): "The asteroid is depleted." 

Brussels: "What was that?"

Me: "Uh, nothing - just an alert from my other PC. Never mind."

I glared hard at the PC for embarrassing me, but I don't think it cared. Stupid PC.

Ah, the joy of roid mining...

Ah, the joy of roid mining...

Mining Manners

Anyway, there I am, happily mining away in Belt VI-2, switching crystals and roids from time to time, and shuttling loads back to the nearest station. While I'm doing real work on the laptop, I glance over at the PC every so often to make sure everything is running smoothly.

Everything is humming along nicely, and then a Procurer warps in on my belt. I check the pilot, and see that it's someone from EVE University. Of course, I'm on an alt, so they don't know that the UNI is my main's corp. Still, it's nice to see a friendly blue square on the overview.

The Procurer moves slowly towards me, and then stops about 100 meters away.

I was at a party once when I was introduced to a new neighbor. We shook hands, and started to chat. I quickly discovered that this guy had no idea what "personal space" meant. He stood four inches away from me, talking into my face, apparently oblivious about how uncomfortable he was making me.

I was getting the same semi-creepy feeling from the Procurer. 

So, I set my speed to 10 meters per second and slowly sidled away from him, about 1,500 meters down the belt. He didn't move, so I figured we were copacetic. 

I'm working on two Plag roids, slowly grinding them into my ore hold.  On the overview, there are about fifty asteroids left in the belt - plenty of targets for a while.

And then, my boundary-challenged Procurer companion starts to mine one of the two Plagioclase roids that I am mining.

I have a brief "WTF?" moment.

Then I remind myself that this pilot is a fellow UNI, who hasn't been playing EVE Online for very long. He probably just picked a roid off the overview and started mining it, not realizing that I was working on it.

I decide to get his attention, gently but firmly. I put both my lasers on the roid he's mining, and start pulsing them. That means I'm pulling ore into my cargo hold more often than he, who is grinding away in long complete cycles. In no time at all, the asteroid is depleted.

He sits there for a minute, not doing anything. He must be AFK, I figure, as I target two new roids - Scordite, this time - and start to mine those.  Well, hopefully, he got the point and he'll target his own roids this time, I think to myself.

His laser flips back on - mining one of my Scordite roids. 

Coincidence? I don't think so. This guy's just being an ass, whether he knows it or not. Time for a convo. I hail him (paying a CSPA charge), and after a few seconds, the convo panel appears.

Nev's alt  > Do me a favor and don't mine the same asteroids that I am mining, OK?

There's no answer. I let a minute go by. No response.

Hmm, time to throw a little weight around - maybe that will help him get the lesson.

Nev's alt > By the way, this is the alt of Neville Smit, UNI director.
Rude miner > and why would he say something like that?

I facepalm and sigh. Seriously, dude? 

Nev's alt > Fine, stand by.

I start the launcher, and get my Neville Smit character online. Nev joins the convo.

Neville Smit > And here I am.  NOW do you believe me?
Neville Smit > It's bad form to mine the same asteroids of another miner in the same belt.

There's a pause for a minute, while this slowly registers. 

Rude miner > oh
Rude miner > hi there neville
Rude miner > i see
Rude miner > im sorry
Neville Smit > Thanks - fly safe.  o7

He shuts down, and warps off.

No one knows etiquette anymore, apparently.

Fly safe! o7