When I go on the bus, even the Charedi bus, most of the people are clutching their [usually kosher] phones.
Why is that? Isn't the bus ride a PER-FECT TIME to say the eternal, stirring, powerful words of Dovid Ha-melech in Tehillim? To go through shnayim mikra vi-echad targum? Learn a few mishnayos? Or maybe just sit in silence and think. Or just BE.
Why must there be words? And if one MUST speak - what is wrong with the guy sitting next to him?? Why does it have to be an impersonal conversation on the phone?
People are trying to fill a void. Does the phone conversation really fill that void?? And what about the annoyance of all of the surrounding people who are forced to listen to a conversation that they are not interested in hearing. To date I have yet to see ONE SOLE PERSON ask the people around him [or her] if they mind if he has a noisy phone conversation. People just do it with NO CONSIDERATION regarding the feelings of those in the vicinity. Pilei Plaos.
Public space should be respected. For the same reason that one shouldn't smoke in places where it would bother others [even though people do], so too one shouldn't speak in places where it would bother others.
Am I crazy?? I don't think so but I write this blog in the hope that either people will consider what I say or that they will set me straight and explain to me that it is really OK to have a loud conversation in a public place where it disturbs others.
Since I get virtually zero feedback from the readers I will never know if my words had an effect - but I hope that at least one person will think twice before taking out their phone.
Less texting, less talking, less scrolling, watching and surfing.
More thinking, davening and learning.
More soul - less body.