I was in a cash game with some friends. We were playing on a octagon shaped table that still had the railing and "racetrack". In addition, the middle of the table still had the nylon material. Anyways, I had a stack of 14 $1 chips that I was shuffling around and playing with. I had folded my hand and decided to use the restroom real quick before the next hand was dealt. When I returned I noticed my chips were missing. The person next to me had a stack of 14 $1 chips. When I confronted him about it he said he didn't take anything. Then a couple other players came in to his defense and said that my chips were "on the table". First of all, my chips were just on the nylon material right in front of my pile that was in the "racetrack". My question is... what is considered the table? I was out of the hand, I didn't bet anything into the pot, so since my chips were barely on the nylon material they are considered "on the table" and I have to forfeit my chips? Any explanation of "on the table" would be much appreciated.
The term "on the table" seems to be something made up by your "friends" to fit the occasion. While there are a number of rules and nuances about what makes a bet that goes into the pot, they are all predicated on the player actually being in the seat and aware that they are making a bet. It may be that since your chips were out there a little bit they accidently dragged them into the middle and when asked about it they were not really aware that it had happened. But once you said hey where are my chips they should of had some inkling that something was wrong. But it seems they choose to give you a line of BS instead of making things right. At any rate by hook or crook, they stole your chips, and you should go with Paprarazzi's conclusion and not play with those friends again, not even marbles.