I began working as a waitress about five years ago. The cell phones of those days might look archaic compared to the streamlined mini-computers most people carry around today. Darwin himself would be impressed by this incredible evolution and equally unimpressed by the lack of evolution in an accompanying code of ethics regarding their use.
The cell phone craze took off so suddenly that an unspoken standard of politeness, such as that existing in a library, was never firmly established and seems to have deteriorated at a similar rate that the phones themselves have progressed. Today, I do not wait on a single table whose occupants are not seen using their phones at least once a meal. Its as if a deluge of computer chips and QWERTY keyboards have dropped an illustrious, hand-held holy grail into the hands of every U.S. man, woman and child. Most people are so engrossed in what lies behind a plastic screen that they can barely avert their eyes for a moment to order, let alone to converse with the people who have joined them for dinner.
Upon gloomy observation, I can't help but wonder: Has mankind lost its interest in the current moment? With everyone's attention somewhere else, even the company of friends and loved ones seems to be wrongly prioritized. I wish the instruction manuals would include a little blurb: "Not to be used at the dinner table."