How would you handle a rude passenger in the confined space of an airline lounge?
First, an explanation on the title. I try hard not to ever generalize in a negative way, but I don’t think there is anything wrong with positive generalizations when not done in a patronizing manner. And in this case, my travels and work experience over the years have showed me how courteous and honest Canadians are, as a general rule. Thus, the guy’s nationality does not directly factor into the story, but was too noticeable to ignore.
While eating my breakfast in the brand new United Polaris Lounge at LAX, a gentleman sat down in the dining room. He ordered a cup of coffee and Eggs Benedict than whipped out his mobile phone. He proceeded to have an extended and loud conversation with either a friend or business colleague about his travels. How did I know he was Canadian? He started his day in Toronto and his conversation was peppered with “a-boat” and “eh” (Canadian raising). He worked for a pharmaceutical company and was off to Shanghai.
I know we humans often suffer from the log/speck issue (we judge others about something small while doing something much worse). Perhaps I was doing something annoying myself (though I hope not). But cell phone conversations in restaurants annoy me so much. They drive me crazy.
And yet I don’t think it is my role to turn around and tell the passenger to take his conversation to one of the phone rooms or at least outside the dining room. That may have been more effective than writing about it after the fact, but what position of authority did I have to force this guy to stop blabbing so loudly on his phone? There were no signs barring mobile phone use. But sometimes things are common sense, right? There also isn’t a “No Smoking” sign in the restaurant and I doubt anyone has attempted to light up.
Maybe this little incident should cause me to rethink my position on the use of mobile phones in-flight. See, I don’t care if someone uses their mobile phone as long as they keep their voice down. It is when someone practically yells into their phone, as this gentleman did, that I want to take the phone and drown it in the guy’s beer.