I was recently out to lunch with my husband and in-laws. We sat on the porch outside. The porch was slightly crowded.
The people at the table behind me spent at least ten minutes watching videos on their cell phones at a volume clearly heard by all on the porch. I thought the sound of the videos were annoying. For some reason, the thing I found most distracting was the applause and laughter I could hear on the video, not the people talking.
My immediate feeling was that it was poor etiquette to watch videos at the table in a public restaurant. However, on thinking about it, I wondered if I could be justified in that thought. Was it really any worse than the noise of typical mealtime conversations? Maybe a little louder, I guess.
I’d be interested to know what you think. 0613-13
The more restaurants my hubby and I frequent, the more I notice how many TVs these establishments have turned on to news, sports, or sitcoms. It appears that the concept of a quiet dinner with pleasant music in the background has given way to diners needing to multitask while they eat. Chow down, talk with your dining partner(s) and glance up at any one (or all) of the nine TVs mounted near the ceiling.
Cell phones/smart phones are no different, in my opinion, than scads of TV screens around the dining room with the exception of size. TVs appear to be a common commodity in public dining venues and cell phones are not going to be going anywhere. I don’t own a smart phone but it is not unusual for one of my children to pull theirs out and find a Youtube video that emphasizes the point he/she has been making in the discussion. So we sit there and watch and the conversation continues. It’s not much different than staring at the TV screen and going back to discussing what you just saw on the screen.
So, in other words, chill.