An Open Brief Note to the Person Sitting Next to Me in the United Club at LaGuardia

Dear Person Sitting Next to Me,

It is absolutely a marvel of technology that people around the world can Facetime each other. Amazing, no? You can have a video conversation for free with someone who (apparently) is in Israel while you’re in the airport in New York. That is just the most amazing thing, no.

You know what else is amazing? How AMAZINGLY RUDE it is to have a conversation over Facetime at full volume in a roomful of people.

I’m truly happy about your nephew’s Bar Mitzvah in Jerusalem, and about the family’s preparation for “Purim in Yerushalayim” as the person on the other end keeps saying. Really, that is wonderful.

You know what else is wonderful? Me not listening to you blabbering to your grandkids for 25 minutes.

Oh wait, it’s Jack’s birthday? Ohhhh, that completely excuses how unbelievably inappropriate it is for you to have this conversation at full blast (remember, with Facetime EVERYONE ELSE can hear both sides of the conversation). But you said how happy you were that he was able to celebrate the birthday with you over Facetime.

You know what else is happy? Me, when they call your flight so you’re no longer sitting next to me.

It just got better! She’s repeating the whole conversation to her husband, who was SITTING NEXT TO HER, as if he did not just hear the entire thing (which would be impossible, as both of us are 2 feet from her and heard every “wait – you’re breaking up!”.

Whew, she had to go to the bathroom. Finally some peace.


  1. Next time this happens I suggest you take out your Iphone, record the whole stuid conversation, then when the loudmouth is through, you take out your recording device and play it back, at full volume, while you are watching said stupid call.

  2. i laughed out loud while reading this – the “purim in yerushalayim” part did me in….. the sad part is i can think of atleast 10 people off the top of my head that this could have been.

  3. You should watch movie trailers or tv shows on your iPhone/iPad at full blast and ask her to turn her iPad down so you can hear your show. I think the irony would be amazing.

  4. That stinks!

    Last year after I got stranded in Chicago overnight after the Chicago Seminars, I had to catch a 5:45am flight out of ORD.

    (ORD-DEN-MCI, which makes no sense right? And getting home at noon on Monday instead of 7pm on Sunday? so I’m crabby)

    And who shows up at the gate at 5:10 but an angsty late-teen with her cell phone glued to her ear. Who is she talking to at FIVE A.M.? And she’s going on and on about some boy and how he did this and didn’t do that. Loud.

    It was not facetime, so I only got one side of the conversation.

    Which maybe was even more maddening, because I couldn’t tell if the person on the other end of the phone was saying what obviously needed to be said, which was:

    “The dude does not like you. MOVE ON!” I was about to say it myself.

    Mercifully, cell phone usage is not allowed on planes, so eventually she had to shut up.

    I feel your pain.


  5. Self hating jew. Wow.

  6. i was in yerushalayim for purim and indeed it is very geshmack. chalk it up to an old bubby doing what bubbies do best