I leave my cell phoneÂ off when meetingÂ people in a social setting. I don’t want to offendÂ my companionsÂ by having it ring or buzz while they are talking. AndÂ you’ll never find meÂ making calls or sending text messages in the middle of a conversation.Â I think it’sÂ rude.
But I’ve been in the company of others who have no problem with it. They spend more time taking calls and text messaging than they spendÂ conversing withÂ me.Â It’s like they’reÂ telling me I’m not important enough to have their full attention. It’s kind of insulting.
Now, I’m willing to concede that I may just be a bit old fashioned in this regard, but the observation is no less accurate.
And on a related matter, it’s difficult for me to believeÂ that every singleÂ person with a cell phone jammed to his or her ear while driving (and endangering others) needs to be on the phone at that particular moment.Â How muchÂ of what weÂ need to communicateÂ to other people isÂ so important or time-sensitive that we risk other people’s safety? I’d wager most of it can wait. AndÂ I’d wager further thatÂ a majorityÂ of the “driving cell phone conversations” I witness on a daily basis areÂ excruciatingly mundane andÂ probably irrelevant to anything.
So what do you think:
Has the proliferation of personal contact devices had an adverse effect on manners; are “courteous” and “considerate”Â yesterday’s fads? And, has the ease at which we can connect with othersÂ usingÂ these devices distorted our sense of what’s important?