Unsurprisingly, ring tones have joined branded clothing, vanity plates and the vehicles attached to those vanity plates, as emblems of individual expression. People are out there right now asking themselves (apologies to Chuck Palahniuk), “What sort of ring tone defines me as a person?”
Super Mario Brothers?
‘Memory’ from Cats?
He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands?
Sanford and Son?
For those of you struggling with this decision, my suggestion is to turn the question around. Ask instead “What does it say about me as a person that I would deliberately subject friends, colleagues and complete strangers to irritating little spurts of noise pollution that in turn precede the infliction of longer, more irritating intervals of one-half of a conversation?”
It’s like the prick of a dentist’s needle before lengthy drilling, except at the dentist’s at least you know it’s coming and that it’s for your own good. That’s right, bad cell phone manners are broadcast dentistry performed on the unsuspecting.
I have this swell fantasy where I walk straight up to a person whose phone is ejaculating the William Tell Overture and let them have it with a belt from an aeresol-powered, portable air horn.
So the next time your phone begins bleating ‘Where Have All the Flowers Gone?’ and you see me smiling, either I’m thinking my happy thought, or the package recently arrived.