Too Connected: Cell phones and airports

A few weeks back I posted about a woman talking on her phone while boarding who couldn’t get her suitcase up in to the amazon phoneoverhead bin, but refused to put the phone down. This past week I had another annoying encounter with a traveler too focused on his cell phone to pay attention to his surroundings.

I was walking through PHX (again—I seem to be there all the time these days!) trying to decide if I wanted delicious pizza or delicious burger in terminal B. I was crouched at the side of the corridor looking in my bag for my wallet, against the wall and completely out of the way, when I saw a man walking and texting heading towards me. I started to say something (like, “Excuse me!” or, “Look out!”) when he literally tripped over me. Like, would have fallen completely on his face if he hadn’t braced himself against the wall. He apologized profusely, of course, but he just hadn’t seen me because he had been walking and sending an email.

Look, I get it. I really do. We are all busy people with lots of things to do, and multitasking is a part of our lives. But for Pete’s sake—pay attention to where you’re walking! Even if you’re off to the side, just STOP. Stand still for the 90 seconds it will take you to complete your email and send it, or the five seconds you need to send that text, or whatever. It is so much safer and less annoying than the alternative. What if I had been a small child, and he had tripped over me? There is no reason not to watch where you’re going, especially in a place as crowded as the airport.

Over in a city in China they are doing an experiment where part of a sidewalk on a street has a cell-phone lane. Doesn’t sound so crazy, does it??

Readers, have you had any recent encounters with people staying too connected during travel?

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  1. This is one of my big pet peeves! NOBODY is that important that they can’t have some manners and mindfulness when they’re around other people. If you look at President Obama he doesn’t even text/carry a cell phone in public 🙂 I wish we could bring back manners!

  2. I thought falling down on your face is the best way to learn. Would you never let your own child fall and learn, as a mother?

  3. Sometimes when I get fed up of dodging idiots who are looking at their phones, I yell “look up!” at them as they approach me. They startle, walk around me and walk on. Idiots.

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