Or you could just turn it off.

I hope this disease is not contagious. Or at least enough people have a natural immunity that it doesn’t become pandemic.

Why do people feel unable to turn their dam phones off ?

“But someone might need me!”.
Really. You’re that fucking important. If your son does get whacked by a truck while out playing I doubt his survival will depend on you. Unless you’re a world-class surgeon he’s going to be saved by medics.

“It might be important!”
More important than your life? Coz I’m going to ram that handset sideways into your esophagus if you don’t learn what voice mail means.

Sorry. Just had to vent that. Allow me to explain.

People keep complaining that they’re getting contacted at inconvenient times. A customer just visited my store to lodge a complaint that he got two non-urgent text messages from his network while driving on the motorway. It was sooo unfair and cost him loads of time because he had to pull over at the next service station to find out why his phone had been bleeping. If you don’t want to be disturbed turn your phone off. Else shut up and leave me alone. Your time can’t have been that precious if you’ve got plenty to waste coming in the store to tell me about it. You must think my time is worthless that I’ve got nothing better to do than listen to you whine.

Best one was a dude who works night shifts getting pissed off because I called him to let him know his phone was back from the service centre. I understand he might not have been at his best when I woke him, but he could have told me not to call in the morning. Or he could have switched his phone off.

I bet this is the same disease that causes people to cry in a shrill voice “I tried calling you but your phone was switched off!”.

Yes that’s right. I turned it off. Because I was doing something and I didn’t want to be disturbed. Get over yourself.

I will never understand people who are so horrifically rude as to take cell phone calls in class. Like, what the FUCK? I paid money… actually you did too… to come participate in a classroom discussion, and you’re going to flip everyone off by taking a cell phone call DURING CLASS?

This happened to me last week… here’s what happened?

  1. Cell phone rings with a voice call. “The Price Is Right” theme blares loudly. Ooh, clever.
  2. Voice call again… this time she picks up and talks for about 30 seconds. Class comes to a stop.
  3. Text message… I’m sure she thinks it’s cute that her phone actually says “hoo wee, somebody done sent me a text message” in a helium-filled voice
  4. Then… then, she says… “gosh, that’s embarrassing”

Embarrassing? How about enraging? If you don’t want your phone to embarrass you in class, I don’t know, you could maybe TURN THE GODDAMNED THING OFF? And NOT ANSWER IT?

Really, I don’t want to be one of those “you kids get off my lawn” politeness mavens. But taking cell phone calls during class is incomprehensible to me. It’s like standing up, sticking your ass in someone’s face, and farting.

There’s always going to be wankers.

I can’t help or advise, only to symathetically acknowledge: they are always going to be there.

Maybe I should stop!

I’m not sure.

People don’t “turn off” their landlines, but still get pissed if somebody calls them at midnight.

I don’t have a landline. I only have a cell phone. It is my sole contact with the outside world (apart from this here internet thingo), so I keep it on always during my normal activities (of course I turn it off when I’m somewhere like a movie, hospital, funeral, etc).

But I’ve had this debate with my parents:

“(groggily) uh… hello?”

“Did I wake you up?”

“Yes mum.”

“Well, you SHOULD be up! It’s 10am!”

“No, mum. As I’ve told you for the last SEVENTEEN YEARS, I work evening shift. This call is the equivalent of calling a 9 to 5 worker at 5am!”

“Well turn off your phone if you don’t like it!”

“No, because maybe a bank or somebody important might call me.”

“So I’m not important?”

“No, I didn’t say that, but the bank or whoever don’t know I’m a shift worker. I leave my phone on because I accept the inconvenience that doing shift work is my own decision, and those folks don’t know. They also only call me occasionally. But you, and my sister, and my dad call me just to say “Hello”, you’re retired, and can call me any time of the day. I don’t work rotating shifts or anything - I just work the same evening shift I’ve done for nearly two decades. All I ask is not to call me before lunchtime, because I will be asleep. This is not “lazy teenager sleeping in” but I’m 37 years old, I work long hours, and lunchtime is my equivalent of about 8am. I don’t call you before 9.”
No I love my mum, but sheesh. :smiley:
Anyway, all I’m saying is that it’s often a matter of just “turning it off”, that’s true. But it’s not always as simple as that.

gah the edit rule.

There are occasions when it’s nice to be immediately available, but I’d say those are rare indeed. Perhaps when a loved one far away is undergoing a critical surgery and you’re waiting to hear all is well. Or if you know that you’ll be getting a call around a certain time to tell you whether you get a promotion or something. Still, don’t all phones have a silent/vibrate mode?

(Stupid ringtones are another rant altogether.)

I swear, the majority of calls I hear always seem to include a variation of “Where are you now” and “Can you hear me?” Because, you know, I need to call my daughter at various times during the day and find out exactly where she is. :rolleyes:

I am so thankful we’re not allowed to bring cell phones into the building where I work - at least there I’m spared such inanity. As for me - my cell mostly just stays in my car. Although it hardly ever rings anyway - I don’t think even a dozen people have the number.

Yes, but we used to take them off the hook and necessity makes us walk out of range of them once in a while.

But now they have that “boo-boo-BOO!” replace the handset noise, or as the better phones have, that “ewoo-o-woo-o-woo” that sounds sort of like the scanner on the bridge of the Enterprise.

And as a parallel to this thread, why do people fume that you have your mobile off? Its my mobile, I’m not a member of your personal staff, why do I need it on to facilitate you? Especially in those cases where I’m leaving it off in anticipation of a rant from same person.


UhwahohGod grab phone phone says 23:30 sweetJesusonacross who’s calling at these hours “lo?”

“Oh there you are you don’t know what your brother just did to me! Well this morning but…”


“I was real busy all day and…”


“Oh, my, what?”

“It’s half past 11 at night, you weirdo. I thought it was the police calling me cos you were in the hospital or something! I loveya and stuff but don’t ever again call me at these hours unless someone is dying. Or better, dead.”

“Half past 11? Oh, my, you’re right! K, loveyou, bye”

I do keep the phone on because there have been several medical emergencies at ungodly hours and for some reason (well, being female) I’m supposed to be able to handle those even from another continent… but sweet baby Jesus in the manger, waking people from a sound sleep just to talk about the weather or complain that your son will wear the shirt his wife bought him for his birthday rather than the one you did should be illegal. It’s certainly immoral.

Scene: the Sports Hall of a top English Private School, which has been converted into an exam room for 150 pupils.

Cast: 150 pupils, 7 members of staff

Intro: Before entering, the pupils are advised (both in writing AND verbally) that all mobile phones are strictly prohibited. The mere possession of a phone means you will be ejected from the exam and given a result of 0%.

Action: 20 minutes into the exam, the teachers are patrolling and monitoring the hard-working pupils. There is complete silence, with an air of intense concentration.


All work stops as pupils crane their necks looking for the thoughtless idiot. The staff frantically turn their heads, trying to precisely locate the sound.
After a short while … the senior teacher turns bright red :o , grabs his jacket and runs out the room. Strangely the sound of ringing follows him…

I especially love sitting at a table talking with friends, then suddenly, as if cued by voices in their head, they all whip out their little electronic pacifiers and start thumbing around with them. Fucking numbnuts.

If a cell phone so much as beeps in class, I throw chalk at the culprit.

I teach math, so I’m allowed to be anti-social. And I fucking hate electronic noise.

Yes, some people are. Not the kind who’d be in an undergraduate class (except maybe as a teacher), but certainly the kind who’d be at a restaurant or a movie theater. The next time you’re going in for an emergency procedure try to imagine all the cell phones that had to ring to get everyone to your side before you died.

The thing about these people is that…
Hold on a sec, I got a call.

It’s not going to get better, that’s for sure. I imagine a world where babies are implanted with phone chips at birth so everyone can just talk to anyone at any time. We’ll be a society of people who never shut up but will never be talking to anyone present.


Just tonight, I was at a dinner with a group of people I know from another forum. My phone rings. I take the call there at the table. It’s my dad. He’s nearly eighty and very frail. He lives alone. There is a scared little boy tone in his voice…
“Hi dad, what’s up?”

“I… I can’t… can’t call anybody. Nobody is answering.”

“Well, I’m here. What’s wrong?”


“Yes dad, I can hear you. Hang on, I’ll go outside where it’s quieter.” (I excuse myself from the table) “Are you there?”
“I don’t feel well.”

“Dad, you’re a diabetic. Have you eaten?”

“Can you come over?”

“Not now because I’m forty miles away, but of course if it’s an emergency, I can.”

"“No, it’s not… I don’t feel quite right.”

“Eat something dad, and go to bed.”

“I’m about to. Can you come over tomorrow?”

“Yes. I promise. I’ll be there.”
That’s why I don’t tend to turn my phone off much.

I have thought for a long time (i.e. well before cell phones) that you ought to be able to make calls at different urgency levels. The callee ought to be able to tell the difference (from the style of ring, or a light display on the phone, or something) between an “I’m calling just to chat if you’re not busy” call and an “I need to get ahold of you” call and a “this is an emergency!” call. They should be able to set their phone so it will ring for some levels but not others. It should be illegal for phone solicitors, survey takers, etc., to call at anything above a low urgency level.

Yes, I’m sure the woman in front of me at the dollar store was being paged for a life-saving emergency when she answered her phone in the midst of checkout. I could tell, you know, because I could overhear the conversation she was having instead of paying for her stuff so I could get to the register and pay for my stuff.

RudeGirl:Hey wassup?
Clerk at register: Is this your item?
RG: Naw I’m at the dollawsto.
Clerk: Is this your item?
RG: Naw I ain’t wid him no mo.
Clerk: Is this your item?
RG: Naw, he done - HEY that ain’t mine! Don’t you be ringing up some shit ain’t mine!

Yes, there are times and places that cell phones and pagers are necessary. I have often found that those for whom they are necessary know how to use them properly.

A young lady was having tea with Queen Elizabeth II. The young lady’s cellphone went off. The Queen smiled patiently. “You’d better answer that,” she said. “It might be someone important.”

I was with my cousin some time ago, and my cell phone rang. I had it on specifically because I was far away from home and wanted to be sure to have it in case, you know, whatever. Anyway, I picked up the phone, saw it was no one important, and put the phone back into my pocket.

He looked at me, totally shocked. “Aren’t you going to pick it up?”

I said, “No, I’m talking to you.” You would have thought the sky turned yellow with pink polka dots from his reaction. “But…someone’s calling!”

And they can wait! Of course, he picks up his cellphone all the time. I think this is rude - my friends do it, too, so I have to deal with it. “Hang on, I gotta get this.” But I’m right in front of you! Talking to you!