As a young bridge player, I recognize that I am somewhat of a novelty at most bridge events. Even though I play hundreds of sessions a year, I still get these questions every time I play. It starts with "It's so nice to see young people playing bridge!" And then the interview begins:
How long have you been playing bridge?
I was born with a deck of cards in my hand. My mother and grandmother tag-teamed to teach me the game from the time I was just a baby. I learned addition by adding up the points in a bridge hand, and the first letters of the alphabet that I learned were A, K, Q, and J. That said, I didn't start taking the game seriously until I was about 23. When I met my husband, I started taking it really seriously, and I think it's fair to say that I've been actually playing bridge for about 2 years. I've been an ACBL member for 18 years.
What grade are you in?
Sigh. I graduated college five years ago. I'm not sure if people ask this question because I look so young, or if it's just to be patronizing. It *feels* patronizing. Please knock it off.
How old are you?
See above. My answer to this question, when I'm feeling spunky, is "How old are YOU?" But okay, okay, I turn 26 later this month. Party in Gatlinburg!
Who taught you how to play bridge?
My mother taught me, then my husband untaught me everything and started from scratch. My mother is 100% responsible for my interest in the game, but McKenzie is 100% responsible for my success.
Is this your mother?
Several of my partners are women who are a little older than I am. Very rarely do I play with my mom, but she does play. Please stop and think about how rude this question is before you ask it. It makes me very uncomfortable, and I worry that you are hurting my partner's feelings. You may think I'm 16, but my partner knows I'm 26. When my partner is in her 40's, do you think she wants to be asked if she has a 26-year-old daughter? It embarrasses me when you ask me this. If you're curious about a relationship, it's always safe to ask "How do you two know each other?" "Are you related?" or best yet, "Is this your sister?"
Are you related to Donna Compton?
Okay, not a question most juniors will get, but apparently everyone in the bridge world thinks Donna is my long lost twin. I don't know her and have never met her, but I understand I am to take this question as a compliment. Thanks, then, but no, we're not related.
So there you have it, just in case you're one of the few who've never asked me these things :)