The Social Gaff

That’s a typo, right?

It should be social gaffe with an “e ” at the end – that sort of blunder that we all make from time to time in public. The one where we say the wrong thing or use the wrong spoon. The minor public embarrassment, Right?

Wrong. The title is spelled correctly . I’m talking about the long pole with a curved hook on the end – the one you thrust into a conversation to drag out a victim, wriggling and twisting. It is distantly related to the social three-gang hook but in the case of the gaff you don’t need to bait it – you just poke and haul.

Imagine a group of people standing around at a barbecue drinking cans of beer and  waiting for the meat to be ready. You glance at the BBQ plate and note that, though you have not added anything onto it yourself, you would like some of the chops and snags. Obviously there won’t be enough for everyone – somebody’s got to go.

Select a good big juicy  victim – they are likely to have brought the best BBQ pack. Wait until the BBQ is ready to go. Then ask them if their car parking lights are still on. With any kind of luck they will slope off on the double to check – you swoop on their dinner – and they are left with nothing but salad and a bun when they get back. It takes timing, but it never fails.

Or suppose you want to remove someone from a social group. Just insinuate to three other people that your victim is worried while misconduct charges are investigated. Don’t specify what charges.

Then tell your victim that people seem to be talking about them.

You can go off and get a drink and by the time you get back they will be gone. And no-one knows exactly why. Today’s internet scandals revolve around sex, but tomorrow it might be money, politics, or religion…and people will just apply whatever they have read wherever they get a chance.

Or a simple one. Lean over into a group at a social gathering and give one of them a $ 5 bill.  Say they were right about the host and that they win the bet…Then move off and lose yourself in the crowd. Pick a complete stranger. It’ll be the best $ 5 entertainment money you’ve ever spent.



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