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It’s not necessary to yell into a cell phone–really May 3, 2010

Posted by Ann Bertorelli in Personal Observations.
Tags: , , , , ,

telephone struck by lightning by david.nikonvscanon on flickr I had every intention of writing something quite profound and insightful as I settled into a table in my favorite cafe. I was going to be an inspiration to all of my faithful readers. But things have changed in the last five minutes. Why, you ask. That’s because there are two people in this normally very peaceful cafe who are having conversations on their cell phones. That in itself is not a problem; we all have cell phones. But is it necessary to have the conversations at the 150-decibel sound range?

I really don’t care that the tea that the nice woman on the cell phone is thinking of buying is flavored with cardamom and vanilla and sounds really yummy. What does her husband think would be a good buying decision? Nor do I want to hear the man sitting about 15 feet from me, shouting loud enough to be heard in the next county, plan his next fishing trip with his buddy. It’s not that I don’t like people—I really do. It’s just that I don’t want to hear their damn phone conversations. And for some reason most people talk much louder on their cell phones than they do when having a face-to face conversation. Do they think they have to project their voice to where the person actually is? If two people are sitting together at a table in a restaurant they usually modulate their voices so that the people around them are not privy to their private conversation.Why does this concern go out the window when they get a cell phone in their hand?

Here’s the thing. Those tiny little microphones in our cell phones are incredibly sensitive. They can pick up the smallest sounds. So when you are yelling into them you are not only pissing off the people around you, you are killing the ear of the person on the other end of your phone. Because this habit of shouting into cell phones so annoys me, I have done my own experiment. When speaking into my cell phone I have tried speaking in a normal speaking voice as well as a softer than normal voice—kind of intimate sounding. (Could be called sexy but some people I talk to don’t want to go there—like my son for instance.) Interestingly, not one person has asked me to speak up. This leads me to the very logical conclusion that it is unnecessary to speak in a volume that is louder than in-person conversation.

I have heard rumors that cell phone calls may be allowed on airplane flights. OMG, that would be horrible. Can you imagine what it would be like to be on a five-hour flight with about 20 or so people doing business on their cell phones—at peak volume? Just shoot me….

I know this has been a bit of a rant—something I don’t ordinarily allow myself. But it is my hope that this humble little blog may reach at least one or two people who will change this behavior—or at least teach their children better manners. And if I had remembered my iPod today, I probably would have written the post I started with. But the important thing is I feel better now.




1. rachel - May 7, 2010

makes me feel better too!

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