A Conversation for Modern Etiquette
Yanichka Started conversation Mar 24, 2003
There are some circumstances where a cell phone should not be used at all: turn the thing off and let voicemail take care of the calls for a little while. These are circumstances where the ringtone and ensuing conversation would be obtrusive, such as at a movie, concert, or church service. The only trouble is remembering to turn the thing back on later!
There are some circumstances where using a cell phone is fine, as long as the user does not imagine a phone booth around them, allowing them to shut out anyone who happens to be actually standing near them. Here I am thinking of a person standing in line at the supermarket. Before he or she gets to the cash register, he or she may talk away all he or she likes. Once he or she (isn't this structure annoying?) gets to the register, however, it's time to say "Look, I'll call you back in a minute," and hang up. Please remember that the person standing behind the cash register is just that-- a person, and should be treated as such.
And then there are some circumstances where using a cell phone is fine with me, but it seems to irritate the rest of civilization, such as in a restaurant. If a person is sitting alone at a table, and the phone rings, and he or she (oh not that again) talks at a normal (i.e. not loud) volume, what's the problem? The only difference between this conversation and the one at the next table is that you can only see one of the people in this conversation.
As long as you don't ignore the people standing around you, and don't talk really loudly, and the conversation doesn't intrude on what you're doing, talk all you want.
That's what I think, anyway.
Amy: ear-deep in novels, poetics, and historical documents. Posted Mar 24, 2003
I once got in heaps of trouble for leaving my cell phone off during a concert.
Me and my boyfriend (U113478) went to a 4th of July celebration at the local park last summer, where the city Symphony Orchestra performs music (with the Lancaster "concussion" section - cannons, just for the 1812 Overture) and they do fireworka when it gets dark enough. We were supposed to meet up with a group of my friends at the entrance to the park, and sit with them and goof off the whole time. Well, they weren't there when we arrived at the parking lot/car park of the mall (the mall and park are right next to each other, there is a walkway that goes under the highway that separates them), so we decided to go ahead and go into the park and sit down in the outdoor ampitheatre, because it eventually gets very hard to see if you're not very close. We got there, sat down on a blanket, and kept an eye out for my friends - but saw neither hide nor hair of them (except one old friend of mine I wasn't planning on coming across).
Unknown to me, my friends were trying to call my cell phone the *entire* night, if only to get ahold of me and Richard so we could get a ride home as I don't drive. It's not as if we would have heard it ring during the concert anyway... especially once the fireworks started. After the evening was over, I turned my cell back on to call my dad to pick us up, and I turn the phone right back off because the battery's almost dead. Well, turns out while I turned it off, my dad tried to call me again, to tell me that he had to pick me up at a specific spot - so I got rather yelled at when he did find us.
Thinking that was it, I pled stupidity and lack of foresight, and went to bed that night thinking that mess was over with. Not so. About two days later, I got a *very* irate phone call from a friend of mine who *only then* decided to call me about that night, swearing that she called me about 50 times.
*sigh* Technically it was their fault, because they never even got to the park for another half hour after when they said they'd meet us there.
There is only one thing worse than being Gosho, and that is not being Gosho Posted Mar 25, 2003
Speaking as someone "behind the register", I find it very disrespectful and lacking in good manners to either be talking on the phone at the checkout or to answer the phone and carry on the conversation, or to answer it and not say something like "Can you hold on, I'm at a checkout - I'll be with you in a couple of moments."
Customer service these days seems to make people feel that it's ok to treat sales assistants the way that servants were treated 100 years ago, and make sales assistants too scared to talk back even when a customer is being insufferably rude... except for a few of us who have been around for a while and have the courage of our convictions.
Like one of my co-workers who told a customer yakking on the phone when they walked up to the checkout "I think it's best if we wait until you've finished your other conversation *looks over customer's shoulder*... NEXT IN LINE!"
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