And now I shall proceed to show my curmudgeonly ass.
So I wander into my local Barnes & Noble Travel Section to see if Weird Virginia--Your Travel Guide to Virginia's Local Legends and Best Kept Secrets is worth the cover price of $19.95* when I'm suddenly surrounded and aurally assaulted in the narrow aisle by not one, not two, but three people yakking on their cell phones simultaneously.
It felt like a D & D melee attack and there I was without my +5 Gauntlets of Bitch-Slapping.
Now, I acknowledge (grudgingly) that bookstores are not libraries with enforced rules of quiet, that the neurotypical require almost constant social interaction whether face-to-face or electronically (though I'm at a loss as to why), and I've got nothing against cell phones--I'm not that curmudgeonly; hell, I own one myself--but people! Disconnect once in a while! What in God's name is so important that it can't wait till you get somewhere a little less public?
(And I assure you these conversations to which I was forced to bear witness were not emergencies)
Lest you think I am a lone voice crying in the wilderness, allow me to direct your attention to the following:
Cell Phone Etiquette: 10 Dos And Dont's
The Ten Commandments of Cell Phone Etiquette and an update.
'Nuff said? Good. All that's left is to do something about DWMP**
It's okay--hardbound, profusely illustrated, full o' stuff--but typically superficial for a book of this type; it lacks the kind of depth and substance I prefer in a travel book, though that's not to say it wouldn't make a great gift for someone. I walked out with Redmond O'Hanlon's Trawler--A Journey Through the North Atlantic ($14.95 trade paperback) instead.
**DWMP--Driving With Maryland Plates. Why is it whenever I see people doing something truly outrageous in their car they are (1) drunk, (2) futzing around with their cell phone, or (3) sporting Maryland license plates?