It is always nice to sit down at a bridge table and play with friendly people. Etiquette is generally defined as conventional requirements as to social behavior. The popularity and universality of the game of bridge relies heavily upon the players being well-mannered and courteous. This attitude towards each and every player is expected and should be maintained at all times. Unfortunately, this is not the case. We are only humans with emotions and we can not be self-disciplined at all times under all circumstances.
We have all met those rude and obnoxious players in our bridge past. No one has ever escaped that certain look, that certain irony in the voice, that gesture which disturbs us emotionally and mentally. It is possible that we have been guilty of doing the same. Perhaps we let our emotions get the better of us, and we simply became rude and obnoxious. If we catch ourselves being less than polite, then that is the time to exercise self-discipline. Take a deep breath, go get ourselves a cup of free coffee, or excuse ourselves and make that trip to the bathroom.
Therefore, if we all make that special effort to be courteous to one and all, perhaps the game, the play and the atmosphere can become more enjoyable for one and all.
The Laws as stated in The Official Encyclopedia of Bridge, Laws 74.A.2 and 74.B:
Law 74.A.2 Etiquette of Word and Action A player should carefully avoid any remark or action that might cause annoyance or embarrassment to another player or might interfere with the enjoyment of the game. Law 74.B B. Etiquette As a matter of courtesy a player should refrain from: 1. paying insufficient attention to the game. 2. making gratuitous comments during the auction and play. 3. detaching a card before it is his turn to play. 4. prolonging play unnecessarily (as in playing on although he knows that all the tricks are surely his) for the purpose of disconcerting an opponent. 5. summoning and addressing the Director in a manner discourteous to him or to other contestants.
Other Elements of the Game Regarding Manners
Following are some articles to look at, read, take to heart, heed and adhere to. Please take the time to read them. Some involve the Laws of Contract Bridge because this part of the game is taken seriously by the sponsoring organizations. The policy of Zero Tolerance has been introduced. There are civilized and heated discussions about this policy. However, using your common sense and courtesy, undermined by reading the following, will permit you to become that nice Bridge Lady or that wonderful Bridge Gentleman.
Concentration - An essential for the Declarer
Conduct - An essential element of behavior at the Bridge Table
Propriety - An article on general manners at the Bridge Table
Zero Tolerance - All about the new policy of ACBL
All bridge players, all participants at the bridge clubs, at national and international tournaments indeed hope, expect, and trust to meet only nice and polite, courteous and friendly people at the bridge table. They should not be disappointed.
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