Sunday, April 06, 2008

If you can’t hear me, why are you shouting?

Why do people speak louder into their phones when they can’t hear the person on the other line? I do it myself. It’s like wiping your cheek when you see an eyelash on someone else’s face, or hitting the imaginary brakes when you’re in the passenger seat.

I can promise you, increasing the volume of your own voice has no affect on theirs.

I get it. We can’t live without our cell phones. But it seems to me more often than not, we can’t hear people very well when we’re on them and it’s usually our own fault. We love the convenience, but taking a call outside, in the car, in a store, in a bar, in a restaurant (really? do you have to?), is more trouble than its worth due to the competing noise around us. And we end up annoying everyone.

What’s even more frustrating is when you’re in a quiet setting when someone takes a call from someone on their cell phone who can’t be heard. Your officemate or library neighbor just speaks progressively louder, and eliminates all chances of membership in Mensa.

No matter how hard I try, I cannot get the earpiece volume for my mobile phone up beyond the top bar. It’s like repeatedly hitting the elevator call button in futility when it doesn’t arrive fast enough – of course, if it did arrive fast enough we’d all completely freak out during the ride when our heads pounded into the ceiling and there was still no view of Wonkaville. I think if the elevator manufacturers started making the light toggle on and off every time we hit the button, they might actually break us of this moronic habit. Again, I do it myself.

So the next time you’re on the phone and can’t hear, please go somewhere that you can, or ask the person to call you back on a better line (if that’s a reasonable request). At least stop shouting.

And I lied about Mensa ( The only requirement for membership is a high IQ – common sense and decorum are optional, and apparently don’t correlate with intelligence. There will always be plenty of rude, loud people, genius or not-so-genius, screaming into their cell phones, repeatedly punching elevator buttons and providing more fodder for my blogs.


Ginger and I said...

Well Mike, I admire your recognition of this obscure "fad" that seems to have captured so many people in today's society. As I was reading your blog my mind made the intuitive connection beyond just the cell phone. Humans do not have patience, expecting other people to improve their flaws if they talk louder or something. I hate it. Ignorant people need to realize to be patient. Well that is it. Like your writing. write back


Mike said...

I appreciate your comments and kind words. Guess it's time to check out your music on Myspace.