Our neighborhood game plays dealer's choice with many strange variations and a few non-standard hand ranking. Is it acceptable to ask for clarification after the hand had been started? A few players say no.
Where I work we deal mixed games at very high limits. It is perfectly acceptable, even for the super sensitive high limit players for a person whom has little or no experience with a game to ask questions, before the hand, after the hand and during the hand. It should be no problem with your local game to ask for rule clarification at anytime. If they think not, Read Romanmik's comment over a few times until you decide it might be better to find another game, because as he said it is simple why they won't.