Dear Blake,

Last weekend, my companion and I went to one of our favorite restaurants for an intimate dinner. Per social distancing regulations, a mid-70s couple was seated approximately 15 to 18 feet away. Halfway through our meal, they began FaceTiming with their great-grandchildren and family.

Their conversation continued for more than 10 minutes, with exchanges about what presents “Jack” had received for his birthday and what the mother was fixing for dinner. To say that our dinner was rudely interrupted by their overly loud and personal FaceTime discussions would be an understatement.

I kept thinking that, surely, when they told their family members that they were having dinner at a restaurant, the conversation would have been politely discontinued by one of them. I didn’t even feel like staying for the usual coffee and dessert and, on my way out of the restaurant, I stopped by their table to gently but firmly say I thought they had been extremely rude. The man stood up and accused me of being the one who was being rude. He went so far as to run after our car yelling as we pulled out of the parking lot. Is it wrong to politely make people aware of their inconsiderate actions when it affects others?

Signed, Horace
From Santa Fe, New Mexico

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Dear Horace,

I do not think you were rude by confronting the man in the restaurant. I am still wondering why you didn’t entertain the option of grabbing his cell phone… and smashing it on his hollow head. So, here are some other options I think you should’ve entertained. You could’ve sat the table next to him and played some very offensive gangster rap or heavy metal music, with the maximum volume on your phone. And continued doing that until a restaurant employees told you both to either turn your phones off or get out. Or get close enough to him to see the video of his grandkids, tell him they are ugly, and then demand that he pays for the gas you had to use to come to the restaurant, because you lost your appetite looking at his adolescent hideous relatives. And if you wanted to clear his table, you should’ve walked up him looking depressed. If he asked you what was wrong, you should’ve told him that you tested positive for Covid-20, which is the latest strain of the virus, that attaches itself to electronic devices within 500 feet of anywhere you would breathe. Hopefully when he abruptly leaves, he would’ve already paid for the meal, thus you’d dine for free too. Finally, if he followed you outside yelling, you should’ve floored it as if you were going to run him over. And when he fell down terrified and fainted, he’d never do that again, or at least until after he got his newly broken hip replaced. I hope this helps.

Blake

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