Tag Archives: Mobile Phone

“Jaw With John” – The Meal Doesn’t Come With A Side of Mobile Phone

My husband and I are parents of seven adult children, ranging in age from 25 to 34. Recently two of our kids (and one spouse) came home for a visit and we noticed they were never far from their cellphones and even at the kitchen table were on their phones texting or checking their mail.

We consider these times together special and my husband, especially, noticed that they were less “present” when on their phones texting, etc.

This Christmas all kids and spouses are coming home for our reunion. Everyone comes home and these are special times, especially since we now have grandchildren.

The out-of-towners all stay with us.

Our question is about the cellphone use during our celebrations and meal times. When we are together at the Christmas dinner table we wish our kids would put the phones away, except for picture taking.

My husband wants to set some rules during these family gatherings.

I am hesitant to set the stage with rules that might make some of these adults crabby.

What do you think? — Babi

Dear Babi:

These are the times we live in unfortunately. Where someone cannot go 10 minutes without checking their phone (this is especially true in movie theatres, but that’s another ball of wax). I admit, I am guilty of this techno-sin when it comes to mealtime but I am vigilant in my mission to stop such activity completely. At dinner, and other meals at home, I make sure to put my phone far enough away from me like in another room or at the other end of the table so I can be present in the meal and the company I am in. If I am out to dinner with friends or family or on a date I keep my phone in my pocket and don’t bring it out until it’s appropriate.

Ideally you would have all of your guests leave their phones, tablets, gaming devices etc in another room at mealtime but that could mean someone could sneak away and check it. If you were to gather them all up and have them on a table nearby, face down, it would really test their resolve. They would hear the phones vibrating on the table but not know whose phone was buzzing. It’d be like a murder mystery that you don’t want to solve because it would disrupt the meal. I have been on dinners with friends (not a bunch of people mind you) where the first person to bring out their phone had to buy a round of drinks for everyone at the table. You could do something similar, except make the punishment cleaning up instead of buying drinks.

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“Jaw With John” – Doting Mother Dotes All Day And Night

My significant other was talked into getting a cellphone by her adult children. We do not live together, but I do spend most evenings with her and I spend the night on the weekends.

Every evening between 6 and 7 a particular daughter feels the need to call, and I end up sitting at the kitchen table eating supper by myself. I can expect calls on the weekend at around 2 in the morning from one of her intoxicated kids requesting a ride.

I told her these calls were disrespectful to me and unless they were of an emergency nature they could be taken after I left. She initially agreed but now she’s back to taking the calls. Should I not have more value than a cellphone? — Miffed

Dear Miffed:

It’s called dinner, not supper. C’mon man.

Have you ever tried not eating between 6 and 7 to avoid this daughter calling during dinner? That would LITERALLY get rid of this problem entirely.

Has this drunk child not heard of Lyft, Uber or a regular old taxi? Would you rather that child drive home drunk? I’m sure you’d rather him or her drink in moderation but that clearly isn’t their endgame.

Her kids, obviously, come before you and this won’t change. She is being nice and giving them a ride when they need one and listening to them when they call. It’s called being a Mom. This is something that you will either accept or it will be a deal-breaker. Just don’t call and tell her. That’s reserved for her kids.

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“Jaw With John” – I Love Watching You Text People While We Hang Out…

My wife and I disagree on cellphone etiquette.

I do not think it is right to interrupt a conversation to take text messages during a date, at dinner or any time we are talking.

My wife says the opposite, that it is impolite to interrupt her texting to ask a question or for her not to respond to a text immediately, even if we are engaged in a date, dinner or conversation.

Your thoughts on this are greatly appreciated. — Admirer in Oregon

Dear Admirer:

Your wife is probably one of those people who leaves her phone on during a movie and when it vibrates with a text, she answers it and ruins the entire experience for everyone, isn’t she? Those people are the worst. They can’t leave their phone alone for 2+hours…

Is your wife a surgeon? Is she in charge of a NASA space mission? Is she the President of a country? If the answer to these questions is “No” then your wife is in the wrong here. Your wife is the one being impolite to you and others by saying that her phone/messages take precedence over the people in front of her. And for her to say that you are being impolite by asking her a question while she is texting is just plain bitch status. Whenever I am out on a date or with friends I am in that moment and look at my phone sparingly. She is being rude and needs to know that her behavior is no longer tolerated.

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