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Kindness Korner

Say "No" to the Ubiquitous Cell-phone


A small group of friends were huddled together at a table munching goodies and drinking coffee. One of the eight had begun to tell a sad story about her married daughter, who had a still-birth and slipped into deep depression. She was a little ways into telling of the ordeal when a cell-phone rang.

The owner of the phone pulled it out, looked at the number, and answered. She then left the group to talk on her phone. When she returned she reported that it was a neighbor’s daughter who needed a baby sitter. The initial ringing had been slightly intrusive, but the woman’s departure was a major statement. It said the phone call had higher priority than her friend’s distressing family plight. As it turned out the need for a baby-sitter stole the woman away from listening to a friend's heart-wrenching personal concern.

I have had many conversations interrupted by a buzzing cell-phone. Rarely does it bother me. But the “baby-sitter” call reminded me there is a time to ignore a ringing phone.

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