08 Dec
My Phone is Smart. But Kind of Rude.

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

I finally decided to join the 21st century and got a smart phone. Only now I realize there is an entire new etiquette that must be learned, or maybe unlearned instead. Who knew it was okay to repeatedly check your email while visiting friends?! Or being absorbed with your smart phone while you ignore you kids at the park. I see people doing this all of the time and it all seems rude and ill-mannered to me, but maybe I’m being an uptight prissy. What is the proper etiquette for using your 3G network around others?

Signed,

Etiquette Edie

_________________________________________________

Dear E.E.,

Congratulations on your smart phone! Now get ready to join a support group for your new addiction. Because in no time, you will stop judging those who ignore their children and friends and you too, will be compulsively checking emails, texts, BBM’s, tweets and Facebook updates.   Plus, how many times can you truly watch little Sally go down the slide and clap with glee? Or talk to your friends out loud?

Except for crossing the street, there is no need to look up from your Blackberry or iPhone again. And yes, I almost fell into a construction site recently because I was trying to walk and watch the Hannukah version of Dynamite. Video of flying latkes is surprisingly compelling.

Of course, if you are one of those touchy feely people that values true connections, then maybe you should go in a different direction. In that case, only check your phone once or twice when visiting friends. And use it sparingly at the playground and only for important stuff. For example, it’s absolutely acceptable to text your best mommy friend with questions like this: “It’s 50 degrees and Johnny isn’t wearing any shoes. Am I bad mother?”

And if you truly want to be present in your life, leave the phone at home once and awhile. Yes, you will probably get the shakes and you’ll likely have to rock yourself back and forth to calm your technology withdrawal symptoms. But you’ll also get to smell a lot more roses. And fall in far fewer construction sites.

Enjoy the new phone,

Kelcey, TMH

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11 Responses to “My Phone is Smart. But Kind of Rude.”

12.08.10#1

Comment by Yuliya.

Oh do not judge ye of recently acquired phone. I too find myself getting snippy with constant phone users, but I’ll be honest I’m just jealous that I haven’t read the manual and don’t really know how to configure the Twitter yet.

12.08.10#2

Comment by Betty Herbert.

H has recently acquired a smartphone after years of completely refusing to have a phone at all. Now, not only do I have to tolerate him constantly staring at the damned thing, but I also have to put up with his attempts to engage me in conversation about the relative merits of Android vs. Apple. The worst thing is, he says I’m just as bad. This is not true: my use is WORK. Right?

12.08.10#3

Comment by Old Lady In a Shoe.

I am still resisting the Smart Phones, and as such completely agree about the rampant rudeness going on. But hey, I don’t need a smartphone to ignore my kids at the playground; I just read a book or compile grocery lists. Seriously, does any mother not get bored watching their kids go across the monkey bars for the bazillionth time?

12.08.10#4

Comment by Marinka, TMH.

“Leave the phone at home”?!

Like, on purpose?

Is it still ok to breathe in oxygen, or should I be giving that a miss as well, every once in a while?

12.08.10#5

Comment by Lisa.

“Or being absorbed with your smart phone while you ignore you kids at the park”

Oh, puhleeze. Until you follow them all home for a week and clock how many hours they DO spend paying attention to their kids, give it a rest.

JubanMama Reply:

Amen to that, sister! I do occasionally check email or texts while watching my son at the playground. Has he gotten hurt? Kidnapped? Joined a cult? No, no, and no. If I spent 80% of my time watching him go down the slide over and over and over and over and over and over and over, then I think I’m well within my parental rights to see what my friends thought of my hilarious FB status update the other 20% of the time.

Jennifer Reply:

Oh, heck, who needs a smart phone to ignore your kids at the park? I find a paperback works just fine for ignoring them. 😀

12.08.10#6

Comment by Plano Mom.

My problem is the friends who have smartphones and are angry with me for leaving my phone in my purse. I have a choice whether or not to tolerate a friend/family member that ignores me – don’t spend any more time with them. But chastising me because I didn’t answer your fifth text message is a quick way to get a lecture from me.

12.08.10#7

Comment by dusty earth mother.

I am absolutely convinced that computers and smartphones burn new neural pathways in the brain. What else could explain my constant thinking in #hashtags?

Kelcey’s right. Leave it at home once in a while and give the gray matter a rest.

12.08.10#8

Comment by Leigh Ann.

But on a serious note. Watching my twins play in the gravel…or causing mass pig destruction in Angry Birds?

12.08.10#9

Comment by Mom Geek.

Hey, listen. I work for a major telecom company and have spent lots of years I can’t get back so that y’all can Facebook in carpool and trade YouTube videos at soccer practice and your teenagers can watch porn on their phones. If you don’t want to be rude to your friends, that is fine. But the least you could do is crank up the GPS tracking and burn some data! Or stream some Pandora. Thanks for helping a sistah out YO YO!

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