Ramblings of a Tampa engineer
selective focus photo of woman raising middle finger
Photo by Igor Miske / Unsplash

A few weeks ago I went out to a semi-fancy dinner on date night. This place was so small and had to have about 10 tables in total. That small atmosphere paired with quiet music and not many patrons made it a very quiet and elegant dining experience. As we enjoyed some dumplings and sangria the door opened into the restaurant and immediately I could recognize the audio of a phone on speaker.

This became the loudest noise in the restaurant within the moment of entering. Not only was the phone on speaker, but the woman holding the phone spoke back quite loudly into the device. I was immediately tilted and looking across from me - so was she. Who uses speaker phone in a public area? Not only that, but who walks into a fancy establishment and continues to talk on speaker phone?

It appeared the individual was here to pick up some food for one of the delivery services, but it wasn't ready. Watching this individual then sit down on a 4-top table and still be talking on her speaker phone blew my mind. Did she not parse the vibe of the establishment and/or pick up on the patrons social cues all looking over at her?

As we discussed this at our table together - thankfully a restaurant staff member walked up to her carrying a bag of food. She stood up talking on the phone and walked out with the delivery.

As she left I thought quickly in my head that either it had to be 1 of 2 things.

  1. This person gives zero fucks about anything and anyone - their way or the highway.
  2. This person is obnoxiously oblivious to social surroundings.

Now of course it could have been an emergency or a combination of a few other things, but this just tilted me beyond belief.

Kotlety @ Babushka's

At least an excellent meal arrived to distract from that annoyance. This got me thinking to how its nearly a daily experience to have someone just not respecting someone else in terms of social etiquette.

Nothing like standing in line for a burrito and the individual in front of me is balancing yelling into their phone while talking to the employee. Asking them to repeat everything because they are balancing two conversations at once. Have our lives become so busy we have to stay on a call for the minute it takes to order a burrito? At least in that situation I wasn't in a rush and could instead watch this odd encounter as someone balanced a conversation on the phone while trying to order 2 burritos.

Even more recently - a group of 4 walking on the park trail who refused to budge when runners approached them. Who takes up the entire trail and doesn't split when others are approaching? I sure didn't like having to run through the swampy muddy grass as I passed them.

We are all on this Earth together and time and time again I'm blown away from the inept social etiquette others have. Instead of doing anything in the moment to call out any behavior - I'll write a post to rehash the memories.

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