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5 Ways to Deal With Dinner Party Guests Who Won't Put Down Their Phones

post #1 of 8
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http://www.thekitchn.com/?page=18

 

Hate this with the fury of a thousand screaming demons. A couple years ago I invited an old friend over for a nice 4th of July weekend. We were renting this amazing house on a lake with our own private beach, and dock. Use of the canoes, beautiful picturesque forest, seriously, a nice getaway for someone who lives with relatives in the city, not to mention a wonderful opportunity to reconnect with old friends who had been through quite a lot together, instead he chose to be on his phone texting the entire weekend. The wrath I unleashed on him two weeks later when i confronted him about it was epic, and I haven't spoken to him since then. I do feel badly that I was that angry and hurt about it, but how the hell you're going to spend the weekend at someone's home whose cooking you this amazing meal, and spend most of it on the sofa texting?

 

My sister, and ex best friend have done it while visiting me too. It's so extremely rude. These are people I was able to talk to and have long meaningful conversations with before texting, FB, Twitter existed. What has happened to people?

 

 

I vote for collecting the phones in a basket, as you do keys in case someone is too drunk to drive home. If it bothers them that much to be separated from their phones, and they begin to exhibit signs of anxiety and withdrawal symptoms throughout the dinner party, they can have their phone back, but they will never be invited back again.

“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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post #2 of 8

How rude! I would have been too shocked to say anything at first but probably would have indicated my irritation somehow at the time, to give the person a chance to modify his behavior. A second incident would definitely result in the person not being invited again. Luckily, my friends all seem to leave the phones entirely alone at gatherings. I don't remember ever seeing anyone gazing into their screen at any kind of party, much less at table.

post #3 of 8

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Edited by tweakz - 10/27/14 at 10:41am
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tweakz View Post
 

How dare they deem something else in life more important than you and your values especially when they took time out to physically be with you! 

 

My mother will blame her children rather than blame herself for us not wanting to be around her.

 

If you lay out your expectations ahead of time then fine, but people have to adapt to different social protocols.

 

The ones that bother me are the ones that walk slowly in clusters as to block those who walk faster or would like to get around them. Those who get to the counter and after a long wait don't know what they want because they were on their phone.

 

Rude to me is imposing on people for selfish reasons, and expecting others to isolate themselves from others seems like an imposition to me but also speaks volumes.

 

I understand you're bothered and why, but for you to expect their sole attention is rude to them. I'm not that kind of person, but I also will migrate to friends who are like me. Marriages fail when couples try to change each other. -Just move on.

 

When you're hosting a special weekend event for friends you haven't seen in a long while, and you spend hundreds of dollars on food  and other preparations to make everything special, and perfect, yes, I do expect them not to be on their phone as you're trying to engage them in meaningful conversation throughout their stay. yeah, I'm so selfish.. I did not say I expected their sole attention 100% of the time they were there. But why even accept the invitation if they prefer being on their phone? it's becoming increasingly common for people to accept invitations to only be glued to their phones while there. I see it all the time at all kinds of events. The fact that you don't think that's rude at all, and think I'm the one asking for too much astounds me.

 

I think the reason you're annoyed by the fact that I think it's rude for people to do that is because you probably behave that way yourself, and so you're getting a little defensive, instead of trying to see how incredibly rude it is. Don't worry, FB and Twitter will always be there, but the friends who care about you, and who have been with you through thick and thin may not be, especially after you behave that way.

“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

Reply
post #5 of 8
It wouldnt't work in a home (without some sort of rules adaptation) but I have become a fan of stacking. That is to say, if you are out for dinner or drinks, everybody at the table stacks their phones in the middle. The first person who goes for their phone picks up the tab.
post #6 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by AllanMcPherson View Post

It wouldnt't work in a home (without some sort of rules adaptation) but I have become a fan of stacking. That is to say, if you are out for dinner or drinks, everybody at the table stacks their phones in the middle. The first person who goes for their phone picks up the tab.


Allen's is the best so far.

 

I too live and work in the beautiful country and when I have friends to stay here I tell them that cell phone and internet service is very unpredictable (which it is) but they too sit at my counter to check their email and Facebook and texts their friends.

When we are offline (which happens quite a lot) they simply switch over to their cell phones games. I have never tried this but I am tempted to simply turn off my modem and router and tell people that the system is down       :)

post #7 of 8

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Edited by tweakz - 10/27/14 at 10:38am
post #8 of 8

If a home party, use placecards which tell you where to sit. If you don't deposit phone at entrance, you do not get placecard.

 

I like first one that goes for phone picks up tab when dining out.

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