Cell Phones – While I am personally deeply engrossed by the following conversation: “Hey, what’s up? Not much. What’s up with you?” the rest of the world does not share my enthusiasm, but must, nonetheless, listen to you, and everyone else, as they chat away on their cells. What could this many people possibly have to talk about? And who are they talking to? And, most importantly, why do they talk so loudly that I have to listen to it? Here’s the basic rule – you shouldn’t use your cell phone in any environment where other people will find it intrusive. As always, a gentleman is thoughtful of the feelings of others. You should especially not be using your cell in any situation, such as driving, where your distraction might cause danger to yourself or others.
Here are some specific places where, barring life or death emergency, you should avoid using your cell:
- places of worship
- any formal occasion such as a wedding, funeral, or religious service
- public or private performances, such as plays, poetry readings, public executions
- museums and movie theaters, concerts
- gyms, unless the noise level is such that it drowns out your conversation
TV – Unless you are older than I think, you probably can’t even remember the days before there was a TV in every barber shop, bus and train terminal, gym, bar, and restaurant in the world. And just because the world has become so shallow and vacuous as to require constant stimulation with the latest in celebrity court cases, distant disaster, and sensational crimes, that doesn’t mean that everyone should be subjected to this noise. Merchants, you may be surprised to find that just by creating a relatively inoffensive environment, you can draw people in who are desperately seeking a refuge from the constant bombardment from round-the-clock in-your-face TV.
A fundamental key to manly behavior is to be able to think clearly, and to focus attention on the people, or tasks, at hand. In many environments, with blaring TVs, radios, cell phones, etc. this is virtually impossible. Gentlemen don’t multi-task, they focus. They do one thing at a time, and they do it well.