I have pet pee that I recently discovered. I was crammed in with several others on a bus ride when this woman’s cell phone just rang like a fast approaching fire truck. The rising Star Wars ringtone sounded like the tune of impending doom, compounded by the fact we were all trying to stay away from each other’s nostrils and armpits.
I don’t know about you, but a packed two-hour commute with someone’s ridiculously loud ringtone playing in the background isn’t my idea of good morning, or good afternoon or night for that matter. Why can’t people just vibrate their phones or at least turn down the volume of their phones when they’re out and about?
Turns out I’m not the only one complaining about annoying phones. The NY Philharmonic actually had to stop mid-show until the cause of the furor was effectively silenced. Having done so, Conductor Alan Gilbert sparked a vibrant national debate about cell phone etiquette, which seems to have disappeared since people have become more and more fixated on their handy gadgets like chewing gum in shoes. What exactly are the things you shouldn’t do with your phone? Non-Americans need to be reminded now.
Sets a loud MIDI ringtone
Please. We now have a choice. I don’t want to sound arrogant, but I’m going to take the plunge. If you need to enjoy your fake-sounding Star Wars theme (or some other annoying jingle), then tone it down, at least. Read your phone’s user guide. There’s a volume button somewhere.
Talking to other people on the phone as if he is deaf
I’d be more forgiving if it were New Year’s Day or if you were Brad Pitt. But that’s just you, your phone, and a bunch of strangers who can’t help but hear about your nose job and other personal details they don’t want to hear. Whisper words are onomatopoeic and very practical to do in this situation. Or better yet, you can take calls where it’s more likely.
Text or answer calls when you should be listening
I’m sure you’ve experienced it. You are in the middle of your great story when your friend’s cell phone rings and he tries to multitask by skillfully listening to you and texting on his cell phone. Unfortunately, his skills in this department are as fictitious as Harry Potter. At the end of your date, you can’t even remember the last time he looked you in the eye during your brief time together.
I understand that there are times when we have to answer emergency calls or texts. Well, you can quietly excuse yourself or ask for a minute to reply to your public. Or, if you’re supposed to be busy with other people, you can subscribe to call routing functions from phone service providers like RingCentral and Google Voice, so calls can easily be routed to voicemail. The point is to show respect to the people you are physically with in real-time.
There was a time when we were told the importance of looking someone in the eye and listening when someone else was talking. Phones are supposed to connect people. Don’t make them cause to drive other people out.
Image Credit : YourKidsed