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Cell Phone Etiquette for Dummies

Owning a cell phone does not give you the right to talk anywhere you want.

Cell phone or mobile phone technology has revealed that many, many human beings are just plain dumb and witless. So many people think owning a cell phone gives them the right to speak on any subject in any place as loud as they want at any time of the day or night with no regard for people in close vicinity.

Texting while driving is a huge example of cell phone users not respecting the rights of others.

Caption: Texting While Driving Result

I have written a previous post entitled “Smart Phones, Dumb People” after witnessing two parents sitting on a log at the beach, both twiddling on their phones while their three children played at the water’s edge, the youngest being around 3. There were 2–3-foot waves crashing on the sand, lapping at the kids’ feet. The parents were oblivious.

There are certain places where cell phone use should be off-limits. The following is my personal list:

Hospitals

Supermarkets

Movie Theatres

Playhouses

Libraries

Funerals

Buses

Family Time with the Kids

Restaurants

Lineups

Elevators

It is important in our crowded buses, stores, and living spaces to observe some basic common sense and courtesy when using cell phones. Phone etiquette is vital as our personal space becomes more eroded. Have respect for the rights of others when using your cell phone.

Questions you need to ask yourself:

Is it really necessary to check emails and texts every five minutes on the off chance you may receive an email from “that special person?”

Is checking your text messages every time your phone beeps really more important than your children when at the park, beach, or playground?

That “important” phone call you are taking on a crowded bus. Can’t you let the call go to voice mail and wait until you are off the bus to return it instead of subjecting your fellow passengers to an annoying and one-sided conversation?

When checking your groceries through the check-out, is it really necessary to take that call or check an incoming text at the same time you are scrabbling through your purse or wallet to find your debit or credit card and the reward card and while hanging onto a couple of small children? Isn’t that what voice mail, is for?

Is your life less important than checking your text messages when crossing a busy street with your head down and expecting oncoming traffic to see you?

And, what if that oncoming car is being driven by someone checking their text messages?

Do you really think people in a crowded elevator or bus want to hear your conversation with a friend about how last night’s date worked out or your latest business deal? Really?

Though I enjoy my smartphone and all the features it provides, such as being a handy-dandy encyclopedia, I sometimes wish for the good old days when there were only landlines and payphones and phone conversations were held in the privacy of one’s home or office or phone box. A time when there were much less distracted drivers and no nitwits texting while driving.

I really do think mobile phones have bought out the worst in people’s manners. Using the 82/20 rule, I would say 80 percent of people have little to no regard for the rights of others when it comes down to their cell phones. Also, results from a recent poll indicate that cell phone usage is not only habit-forming, it is also addictive; possibly the biggest non-drug addiction of the 21st century.

DON’T TEXT WHILE DRIVING: Based on recent research, fatal crash risk is 66 % higher when a driver is handling a cell phone and it is estimated that more than 800 crash deaths on United States roads in 2017 were attributed to drivers texting or using phones for things other than talking.

All phones come with mute buttons and voice mail. Think about that the next time you are at the park with your children, on a crowded bus or subway or in the library or at a supermarket checkout counter. No one wants to hear your phone conversation.

Carry on your phone calls in privacy and respect the rights of others.

If you have any comments, disagreements, or additional information on this post, please contact me either through Pippies, or through my website.

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Post Image Credit: Erik McLean, Unsplash

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Meet your Poster Michael Trigg

I grew up in New Zealand and up until I left, a genuine Kiwi. I moved to the Land of OZ (Australia) when I was 22 where I worked until moving to New Guinea. A year and a half of working in sweltering tropical heat was enough for me and I moved back to NZ. Suffering from wandering feet, I emigrated to Canada in 1969, living and working in Vancouver with some time spent working in a mine in Northern BC. After a short spell in Vancouver, I moved to California where I enjoyed surfing and the CA lifestyle.  After 6 months of the good times, I moved back to Vancouver where I ended up getting married,  settled down, fathered 3 great kids who  in turn have provided me with two wonderful grandchildren. In my working life, I have been a mechanic, a welder, an auto dealership owner, a TV producer, production manager,  marketing and sales management, an insurance specialist, owned my own insurance agency, and ran my own business consulting agency for the last 8 years. Combined with this trade, I have been writing short stories, a half dozen children's books, two film scripts, numerous business, and marketing plans, blogging and writing online articles, and generally having fun. I love writing and love feedback, good or bad - or indifferent. I love researching, learning, reading, good conversation, debating, and challenges. My hobbies are sailing, playing the guitar, reading, green travel and genealogy. What is the most important thing in my life?  Family and the environment.     
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Meet your Sharer Denise Doe

Dear Reader: I am extremely passionate about: family and the importance of letting family members know that they are loved, cherished, and can achieve whatever they dream regardless of their gender; ecological and sustainable, community-based rough diamond mining and gold mining in the Republic of Liberia, West Africa; health and wellness as it relates to strengthening the immunity and helping women and men cope with the swings in weight gain and weight loss due to flawed diet systems; and helping people work from anywhere in 100% legitimate online work-from-home opportunities within the ever-growing gig economy.   Let's start with what may be a screaming question in the minds of some of my readers: How did I get into mining? The short answer is, by default. You see, my great-grandmother, grandmother, and mother were all rough diamond miners in the same region and town I seasonally mine in today in Liberia. Sounds glamorous, but you would not believe the heartache and struggle these women endured!   I started my work life when I was a 12-year-old in Liberia. My jobs were doing the filing and office work for my dad part-time and working the cash register in the small cosmetics department of my aunt's supermarket the rest of the time during summer holidays.   There were no child labor laws in Liberia at the time. Even though they exist on paper today, Liberia, much like many Third World countries, does painfully little to enforce the rights of children, women, land occupiers and owners, the underserved, and the socially abandoned. No one can draw attention to and right these wrongs but us!   For example, when I was a 5 or 6-year-old, I told my dad that I wanted to be an "international business woman." Yes, it was quite an announcement! I remember thinking obsessively about it before I finally plucked up the courage to make my very important announcement.   The reason for even thinking about international business at that tender age was because my dad sold hard woods from the forests of Liberia to buyers in far regions of the globe. I must admit, I had a privileged and idyllic childhood.   In my young, newly-formed mind, it seemed perfectly natural to want to be just like my father. However, I soon learned that I was a girl and then I learned what it meant to be a girl. This cruel new revelation absolutely crushed my dreams. When I was told that because I was a girl, I was not allowed to travel with my dad up-country to his logging site, I felt like some mysterious  villain had just let the air out of my beloved balloon before my very eyes.   I wish it ended there! It didn't. Next, I was told that only my (obviously disinterested) older brother was allowed to go with my dad to the bush. Make no mistake, it took a little time for me to suck in some air after this sudden shock. Amazingly, I never let this nor many other ensuing injustices keep me down for long. By eight, I had a t-shirt to prove it that said, "I can beat any boy on the block!"   For various and similar reasons, working in corporate America reminded me of being a "girl" in Liberia. Except this time, I was a "black woman." I'll elaborate more in a later blog. For now, let's just say that I didn't get to fast-track my way through college in Ohio like my parents and some teachers planned.   Once again, fate had other plans for yours truly. As a 20-year-old first semester senior, the bloodiest civil war in the history of Liberia was well under way. What's more, the repercussions of the war would not end for me for another 22 years, as this was when I finally got to go back to my beloved Liberia.   During the gruesome war, my father was put under house arrest and his business was destroyed, albeit no less than the entire nation. To my naïve surprise, my college tuition was back-burnered indefinitely. Warring Liberia did not care that I had a 3.67 GPA; proofread college papers for many of my friends (who did end up graduating); and was on track to graduate that year with double Bachelors of Arts in English and Fine Arts.   Undaunted in 2011, after years of working in corporate America, I finally walked the stage with a Bachelor of Science in Business. A few years later in 2013 and after years of insisting that I come back to Liberia by my mother, I went back to Liberia for a second time.   The bloody coup and later civil war (a timeframe from 1980 to 1997 with a few breaks in between) were finally over. Mom wanted help mining and needed my continuing financial support, which began in 1995 when she was in exile as a refugee in the Ivory Coast. Tragically, cancer claimed her life just six months later on June 21, 2014 at 5:55 PM.   Crucially, my mother was always encouraging me to follow my dreams. She was not rich in finances, but she was a billionaire in support and belief in me. Her blinding light of absolute love for my brother and I has never been absent in our entire lives.   A few months later, the 2014 Ebola crisis began waging its own war on the lives of Liberians. I remained in Liberia throughout the crisis and volunteered my time to help create awareness about the virus. I actively participated in the effort of government leaders and officials to craft many simple direct messaging public awareness campaigns. The diverse and underserved populations received these messages by radio, billboards, television, and word-of-mouth. The messages were in their various dialects, so they could quickly understand Ebola and how they could implement measures to save their lives.   Locally, in our mining community, I held meetings with local leaders and influencers to make sure that every man, woman, and child understood how the virus was transmitted. I used the network of the government's regional and local mining agents to spread the message to the underserved local migrant and permanent mine workers about: hand sanitation and hygiene; vigilance about strangers entering towns and villages who also had to wash their hands and receive temperature checks for signs of fever; social distancing; and how to recognize Ebola virus symptoms.   My efforts in the interior occurred over a month before the national government could send tracers and trainers out to villages. As a U.S. citizen and active member of Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP - https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/before-you-go/step.html), I received Ebola alerts over a month before any word got out to the cities and the bush.   As a result of this and the efforts of many brave and persistent Liberians throughout the nation--some of whom lost their lives to the virus--our local mining community and the county as a whole recorded zero cases from the transmission of the Ebola virus during the crisis. The few "suspect cases" were caught at checkpoints and reported to the heathcare tracers as infected people migrating to less populated areas from the capital of Monrovia or elsewhere within nation.   Fast-forward to today and the #SARSCoV2 global landscape that's forever changing our world and planet in ways we cannot yet comprehend fully. Immunity, community, support, work-from-home jobs, trust, and caring are the urgent themes in our new normal. I want to make a lasting difference that I can be proud of and can share with everyone who wants to listen.   Let's make a lasting difference together by supporting the abused, the poor, the homeless, the essential, and non-essential workers with everything we have to offer.   Thank you for reading my bio, #staysafe and #stayathome.   Sincerely, Denise Doe

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