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Movie theater texter is a bad actor

From a column by Jim Jenkins in The News & Observer of Raleigh:

Sophisticated folks whose lives are punctuated by cell phones and related devices, and there are a lot of them, would be aghast to be accused of bad manners. But sometimes, it seems social media — and make no mistake, it’s a positive for most of us — wins the war against social graces.

We know the obvious about cell phones: they’re a wonder. But they almost require a new edition of Emily Post on manners: people who should know better answer their phones in church, at weddings, while jogging, at their own kids’ school plays and sometimes at funerals.

(And sure, we’ve all sinned, cell phone-wise. It’s understandable when people try to get a picture as a show starts, or want to quickly text a friend that they’re on the second row.)

And then there’s the rationalization of those who boast of their good phone manners, that texting is the epitome of politeness because, after all, it’s better than talking.

Well … maybe not. Rather, grabbing for a cell phone — yes, for texting — as if it were a blood transfusion is the ultimate in self-indulgence. Trust those of us who happen to be nearby the texting troops around any theater: you didn’t need to get the call. Whoever was on the other end could have survived, unless you were a surgeon on a remote with the Cleveland Clinic. Which you were not.

No, those who engage in this kind of stuff, the kind that has an impact on innocent bystanders, just don’t get it.

In the scope of life, the truth is a few ill-timed texts in a theater on a drizzly night in March don’t amount to much, and this fellow meant no harm, I’m sure, though it helped to prompt an early exit for me.

But the faithful fans in that theater or any theater deserve to indulge their enjoyment of a minstrel on stage or actors or a movie or a symphony without the distraction of “sour notes” in the audience.

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