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Bookish Pet Peeve #1: Bookstore Cell Phone Blabbermouth

Every bookstore has one.

This guy, he lurks the aisles like a predator of silence. With his cell phone against his ear, his weapon is his voice. Loud, obnoxious, overly chatty.

You hear the Bookstore Cell Phone Blabbermouth long before you see him. He’s not reading books. He’s not even looking for a book.

He came in the store to buy his wife a $50 gift card, but he’s been on the phone for 20 minutes. And you, along with the 47 other people in the store, have heard every word.

This guy says words like “meeting” and “business” and “shareholder” and “bro.” He strings those words together into sentences like, “Bro, we need to set up a business meeting with shareholders!”

Or he might say things like “You need to fire Alex yesterday! We don’t have time for this, bro!”

The younger version of Bookstore Cell Phone Blabbermouth will say things like “She got hammered last night, bro!” or “What time are you guys going to the club tonight?”

Every detail from Bookstore Cell Phone Blabbermouth’s personal and professional life is broadcast worthy. The cellphone is his microphone. The bookstore is his stage. The bookstore’s customers are his audience. You will listen to what he has to say!

He’s probably wearing a blue-tooth because Bookstore Cell Phone Blabbermouth doesn’t realize that using a blue tooth was a total douchebag move even in 2005. Now, even hard-core douchebags know better.

But Bookstore Cell Phone Blabbermouth doesn’t have time to worry about such nonsense. He’s important, and he wants to make sure you know it.

His life is such a flurry of activity, such a litany of urgent telephone calls and demands, that you just have no idea. This guy, he can’t even step into a bookstore to buy his wife a $50 gift card without some important person calling him to discuss some really important stuff. Can you imagine that type of power?

So as you relax on your plush leather chair in your bookstore of choice, sipping on coffee and reading a little Sylvia Plath on a Tuesday afternoon, just know that, at any moment, Bookstore Cell Phone Blabbermouth could show up unannounced. Or, check that, he’ll announce his presence as soon as he steps in the front door.

Bookstore Cell Phone Blabbermouth is the walking, talking version of a fart. As soon as he enters the room, everyone clears out.

When you hear him coming, you’d be wise to just buy your books and get out. He’s going to be there awhile. Your ears will thank you.

(Image: Wired Magazine)

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27 Comments Post a comment
  1. Matt #

    Yes, every book store has one of these guys. Great post!

    Like

    March 8, 2013
  2. Cellphone blabbermouth in bookstores and public transport.Annoying, aren’t they? Especially when you’re not trying to eavesdrop it’s like compulsory eavesdropping. The stage comparison is great! Sure feels like it.

    Like

    March 8, 2013
  3. I can picture it now you just sat down with some great sci fi like Fahrenheit 451, and a book about owning your first cat and this guy comes in and ruins it! You are right though, he is a total douche.

    Like

    March 8, 2013
    • Don’t tell anyone I own that cat book.

      Like

      March 8, 2013
  4. Cellphone blabbermouth’s just love to hear their own voice. I’m pretty sure my dad is one (if he ever visited a bookstore, but he does it in supermarkets). He buys Bluetooth headsets for every single phone he has. And if he can’t hear his own voice, he isn’t satisfied – so he just cranks his voice volume up. Especially when he wants to look like he has some authority.

    Such a good post though! 🙂

    Like

    March 8, 2013
  5. I don’t like people being loud in bookstores, period. I know it’s not a library, but I don’t think it’s too much to ask people to keep their voices down.

    Like

    March 8, 2013
  6. sylviemarieheroux #

    LOL! How about standing right in front of him and staring him down until he feels so bad he has to leave? Why should you be the one leaving the bookstore if it is a place you enjoy so much? Assert your rights to quiet bookstore browsing, Robert! The other patrons will only thank you.

    Like

    March 8, 2013
    • You’re right! Maybe I need to bow up next time.

      Like

      March 8, 2013
  7. I only go to bookstores that don’t allow cell phone conversations inside. The independent bookstores in SF usually have hand drawn comics (e.g. someone stomping on a cell phone) or a quote “We love you but not your cell phone.” :o)

    Like

    March 8, 2013
    • Yeah, I think the loud talkers are much more common at the big chain stores.

      Like

      March 8, 2013
      • sylviemarieheroux #

        Ah, ah, I was just coming back to your blog to say something like that… small independent bookshops are for hardcore “bookies” and you’re much less likely to encounter Cellphone Blabbermouth there. They might not even sell gift cards.

        Like

        March 8, 2013
  8. Worst case of Bookstore Cell Phone Blabbermouth: the campus Barnes and Nobles during finals season – and there’s always that one kid who would rather talk on his iPhone 10 than study, thus making it impossible for anyone else.

    Like

    March 8, 2013
  9. So right! Even across the pond in the UK we have these intrusive individuals ruining the ambiance of being among books we so enjoy in book shops. I hope many a douche bag reads this blog and reflects but I know very few would even have the insight to realise they come across this way.

    Like

    March 9, 2013
  10. One of my pet peeves, too. Love the picture. Hilarious!

    Like

    August 5, 2013

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