FURTHER to my earlier posting on confronting inconsiderate mobile phone users on trains, Nigel Harris (no relation) of Rail Magazine has posted on his own suggested solution in his blog. It’s actually the best suggestion yet and I’m looking forward to trying it out one day.
My only problem on that occasion was that I was in the Quiet Zone, where notices specifically prohibited the use of mobile phones. I have never understood the general public hostility to people using mobiles aboard trains. It is surely one of the most tired and over-used comedian’s routine to bang on about train passengers yelling “I’m on the train!” into their phone.
I mean, why wouldn’t they? Why shouldn’t they? They are, after all, on the train, so the information they’re communicating to their loved one is accurate. No-one seems to have a problem with using a mobile to tell your loved one that you’re in a shop or in the office or in the car*. But if you’re in a train, that’s a no-no, apparently.
And if the person who’s annoying you by conveying factually accurate information to his wife using a piece of technology which most people have these days is speaking too loudly, could that be because the noise of the train is making it difficult for the person on the other end of the line to hear?
Personally, I’m convinced that the “I’m on the train” hostility is a hang-over from the early days of the mobile phone, when only “yuppies” (golly, remember them?) and the elite could afford to own them and there existed a certain resentment/ jealousy against their owners from the rest of us.
Now that mobiles are as common as the cold, maybe it’s time we showed a bit more tolerance and moved on.
Unless you’re in the Quiet Zone. Obviously.
* provided you’re using a hands-free kit, of course