Friday, December 15, 2006

Last weekend, at the crappy fabric store*, I was pleasantly surprised by a sign taped to the counter by the register that said "Please do not talk on your cell phone while paying for your items". A simple statement, but something I wish ALL stores had, not just crappy fabric stores.

(*You might wonder why one would have occasion to shop at a crappy fabric store. Well, although it smells like an unwashed foot in there, the fabric comes in every color, pattern and material imaginable and it is CHEAP: I bought enough christmas colored cotton to drape over all the tables in my apartment for my holiday party and spent less than $10)

In any case, that sign got me thinking about how cell phones, while I admit are a neccesity, usually contribute to the downfall of people who otherwise are quite nice. The talking on the phone while dealing with a cashier is a classic example. What's more rude than that? It's like 'You are not important enough to garner my full attention". I'm telling you, if I were a cashier there would be A LOT of people going home with their security tags still attached to their items if they pulled that with me.

And then last night, while out to dinner with some friends, one gentleman we were with who otherwise seemed like a nice guy, was TEXTING all through dinner. That kind of thing is maddening to me. When I go out to eat with friends, my cell phone goes on silent. If I absolutely have to make a phone call, I excuse myself and go outside. I felt like saying "Hey if there's somewhere else you'd rather be, have at it!", but of course no one is ever as mad about these things as I am.

It makes me weep for the days of payphones, I tell you.

I got a cell phone for the first time in years earlier this year, and I have to say I am still not completely comfortable with it. I usually don't answer it when I am with other people, and I rarely talk on it in public. I am the first one to admit I am a loud bitch, and incapable of talking at a normal level even when I'm in person with someone, much less when speaking through a little handheld box. Adam even threatened me today with having it shut off because I don't use it enough.

Maybe the reason for my hatred of cell phone social faux pas, and my own discomfort is that I am just not a phone person. I don't call people just to say "whatup?" unless we have plans of some kind. I would rather go SEE someone or make plans to see them than chat on the phone for hours. And if I am with friends, I believe they deserve my full atttention and any phone calls/texts can wait until I am free.

I know I am in the minority on this, but it needed to be said. Put down your phones.

(cartoon courtesy of and per Jenny's request)


Anonymous said...

You are so not the minority!! I loathe people who talk on cell phones in stores and don't even get me started on phones in restaurants!! It is my ulitmate pet peeve when someone answers a call over dinner without excusing themselves. Emergencies aside it is so f*ng rude! I have a gf who did this constantly until I said something to her so she started leaving her phone on the table so she could text back and forth. I took her phone and put it on a bus tray that the waiter took away. I asked if I was truly that boring to her? I then told her if we went out to dinner again and she pulled out that phone I was going to rocket it across the room like a baseball.

Amy said...

I couldn't agree with you more~
There is nothing more annoying than someone who is constantly monopolized by their cell and not paying one iota of attention to the people they are with. Trey rude if you ask me. The other evening while out with friends there was a couple at the next table, each on a cell phone talking to everyone but the person across the table from them. I also detest people who wander through stores calling ME on a cell phone and making me hold while they talk with sales associates, people they know, etc. I only use mine to take rude pictures of people I see out. lol

b said...

what is with the texting?!?! it annoys the hell outta me! it is so much faster and easier to just call the person, say what you got to say and be done with it! One word...RUDE!

Nicky said...

Two of my BFFs coined the nickname "Polly Pretentious" for any cell phone carrying person behaving too rude to exist.
I cannot stand when people text message obsessively while they're out. I feel like I'm not interesting enough company to merit their full attention.
Though I am guilty of calling people while shopping, 99% of the time it's to ask a question like, "Where can I find polenta?" Or "What movie did you want, again?" It's certainly not to shoot the shit. And if I have my cell phone on while we're out, it's mostly so a person who is supposed to join us can find out where we are.

clipper829 said...

I don't get the texting. I mean, why? Just make the call if you absolutely have to, I guarantee it'll be quicker! Kind of unrelated, but I also don't get people who don't have a landline phone, only cellphones. I KNOW that there's a whole explanation behind it, yadda yadda, even my husband only had a cell when I met him, but my house just doesn't feel like a home without a landline phone.

Sarah said...

im not against people using their cell phones while shopping, just like if you're in a quiet store and some yahoo comes in screaming on his phone.

also i dont have a landline and i hate not having one! however i dont want to pay for it. maybe adam will get me one for christmas :-P

clipper829 said...

That's a good xmas present. I got my bro a landline phone last year for xmas. He was kinda like "wtf" but a few months later was LOVING that shizz.

Jenny said...


Sarah said...

good call. i love that one!

Anonymous said...

Ladies, completely with you on this one. When I was studying in Scotland, one of my friends was always texting other friends while we were out with him. One night, I finally leaned over and yelled, "Hey, R, love the ones you're with!" It became our catch phrase from then on whenever he whipped out his phone.

Oh, and thanks for the Toothpaste For Dinner comic, Jenny & Sarah. You know I loooooove that guy, right? I'm his (and his wife's) Myspace friends if you want to find him that way, too. :)

Lost in Alaska said...

I love it when you're on an airplane when it lands and they announce that cell phones can now be turned on. Suddenly the plane is filled with everyone saying the exact same stupid thing, "Hi, the plane just landed."
Is this necessary? Can't people on the ground check the listing for themselves? Can't they use the Internet, telephone, what-have-you to check this information? Why does everyone with a phone have to call someone--apparently anyone will do--and tell them this? It drives me BATSHIT.

Also, I was in a public restroom the other day and a woman who was DOING NUMBER 2 was talking on her phone whilst she shat. I turned the light out on her as I left the bathroom becaus that. is. just. plain. gross.