Mr. Manners Speaks (or Doesn’t)

Okay, listen up, people. And I don’t just mean you twenty-something-Generation X-Y types either. I’m talking heavy-duty, born in the ’40s and ’50s Boomer Bambinos too.

You’re at a meal with others. Enjoying good food and good conversation. Your cell phone, smart phone, pad, pod or doodad rings, beeps, chimes, vibrates, intones or otherwise comes to life. What do you do?

A. Answer the phone and chat it up while your friends keep eating and talking.

B. Don’t answer the phone and let it ring out.

C. Get up from the table, withdraw to a secure location, and answer the phone.

The correct answer is not ever A. I’m talking (well, actually you are the one talking) mega-rudeness, galactic vulgarity, whacked-out boorish behavior.

Answers B and C are completely acceptable. A? Never!

All right. I’m done now with my very polite rant.

Author: Andy Le Peau

I've been an editor and writer for over forty years. I am passionate about ideas and how we can express them clearly, beautifully, and persuasively. I love reading good books, talking about them, and recommending them. I thoroughly enjoy my family who help me continue on the path of a lifelong learner.

12 thoughts on “Mr. Manners Speaks (or Doesn’t)”

  1. My fav: turn the pad/pod/doodad off. Or, if one HAS to take a call, let others know that you are expecting it and pre-apologize for the interruption. That would be mega-manners, galactic gallantry, digital decorum. 🙂

  2. Amen! We need and desperately require a return to courtesy and consideration of others. Only an emergency (as in a doctor or a parent with a child in dire trouble justifies an A)People understand about things like that, but the c option should even take care of receiving such as that. Kudos to Mr. Le Peau. Is that name another spelling for Poe? As in the River Po in Italy?

  3. No. Not a distant relative of Edgar Allan, though many have tried to make that connection. Nonetheless, he is one of my favorite writers.

  4. I would suggest, Dr James Willingham, that A is *never* an option. It is rude to your fellow diners and to the person you’re talking to. If you are a doctor or parent with child in trouble, you still need to move to somewhere quieter once you’ve answered your phone so you can pay full attention to what they’re saying and not make an important decision based on potentially incomplete or incorrect information.

  5. I believe I did say that the c option would take care of it…, but I do remember when doctors would receive emergency calls in services….I really wasn’t trying to counter Mr. Le Peau.

  6. My vote: D. Regarding A, a friend who had a bad habit of A-ing me took a casual call when she and I were supposed to be spending time together. Fed up, I got out my phone, and called my dad so as to embark on my own casual call. She ended her call pretty quickly, apologized (after I ended my call), and hasn’t A’d me since.

  7. I agree, and of course husband you know that makes it right, that D is the only option unless as was suggested, you know ahead there is a call you have to take and apologize a head of time. And that is the right answer.

    Your adoring wife (:

  8. Yes, definitely the husband must agree with the wife. Mine ranks among the greats :), and agreeing with her is a pleasure :). And from Monsieur Le Peau’s readiness to agree, one must conclude so is Madame Le Peau> Happy thought :)!

Comments are closed.