Tired of people talking during events?

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by sue1967, Apr 11, 2012.

  1. RD

    RD Well-Known Member

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    Well, I can understand ice SHOWS, but competitions? Aren't they technically sporting events (and therefore anything goes, short of causing trouble)? Then again, I haven't been to a competition so I'm not fully sure. The skaters are there to perform for the judges, right? Unlike a show where they are performing for you and therefore your attention is requested. I dunno...
  2. agalisgv

    agalisgv Well-Known Member

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    Except that skating competitions are sporting events--not theatrical performances.

    In what other sport do people feel they have the right to demand the silence of others? I can't think of a gymnastics competition where that would happen, or any other sport.

    And maybe that's the issue--perhaps some people think of skating as an artistic performance for their personal viewing pleasure rather than an actual sporting event. And so those people then try to impose conduct you would expect at an opera, but get angry when others don't fall in line.

    As I said, the no talking/texting/silencing cell phones are explicitly said at the start of movies, theater productions, etc. But they aren't said at the start of sports competitions because that isn't the expectation. The reason those things aren't stated before a skating comp may be because it's a sporting event and not a theatrical production. And perhaps if people want to enjoy skating comps as if they are theatrical productions, perhaps they should stay at home where they can control the surrounding environment. People pay thousands of dollars for a Super Bowl ticket, but I dare say they don't expect to be able to watch the game in silence because of it.

    Just a thought....
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  3. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    I told a guy chewing guy sitting behind me at Worlds in 98 to close his mouth. I got thanked by most people sitting around me.
  4. spikydurian

    spikydurian New Member

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    Classic skateboy :lol:
  5. A.H.Black

    A.H.Black Well-Known Member

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    I think the real solution is finding a balance - like everything else in life.

    RD had some good thoughts. Skating competitions have elements of both performance and sport. I don't think a skating competition can be compared well with any other kind of competition.

    In gymnastics, as mentioned by agalisgv, at least four events are going on at one time. Coaches walk around and talk to other gymnasts, competitors warm up - all on or near the competition floor.

    In skating there is a big surface of ice where only one (or two) competitors perform at one time. Every eye is trained on that competitor (or almost every eye). At major competitions, ushers often keep people from going up and down aisles during performances.

    As always, it is best if the audience members show respect for those around them. I don't mind if people around me cheer on their favorite skaters and I'm sure others who have posted don't mind that kind of enthusiasm either.

    What I do mind (as the original poster talked about) is constant chatter of any kind. It's a matter of respect for those around you - finding a balance.
  6. Bournekraatzfan

    Bournekraatzfan New Member

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    interesting point. but couldn't it be argued that if someone feels the need to crack gum, talk loudly or text frequently during an event, that person should be the one to watch at home? It seems to me that most people here are fine with the noise and distractions at times when skaters aren't actually performing, and the performances are so short and the breaks so frequent that it seems reasonable to expect people to wait for these breaks to conduct these activities. JMO, of course.
  7. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    I totally agree. I get really tired of the argument that if you don't like it don't go. At the end of the day it is the few bads ones who spoil it for the rest, not the other way around.
  8. agalisgv

    agalisgv Well-Known Member

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    I think that has been the argument of this entire thread.

    My point was arguably there really isn't a good reason to say those who talk at comps are the ones that should stay at home because an equally good argument can be made that those who do not like talking should stay at home instead.

    People are presuming the way they like to enjoy watching skating comps is *the* way to watch skating comps, and those who watch differently are somehow breaking accepted etiquette. The issue I raised is that etiquette doesn't really belong to sporting events, and figure skating competitions are sporting events--not Broadway performances. Things like SOI are artistic performances. Worlds et al are sporting events. Just because someone thinks skating competitions should conduct themselves like SOI performances doesn't mean that should now be regarded as the proper etiquette for everyone else to conform to. The fact that such niceties aren't announced at skating comps (unlike instructions to refrain from flash photography) might indicate people are rather imposing their personal preferences on others in a way that may be considered, well, rude and presumptuous.
  9. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    Sorry but there is no justification for rudeness, regardless of the type of event or the context.
  10. agalisgv

    agalisgv Well-Known Member

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    And my point is while you think they are being rude, they may think *you* are the rude one. IOW, others may see *you* as the trouble maker.

    Just depends on perspective and personal preferences.
  11. manhn

    manhn Well-Known Member

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    Figure skating is also different in that you are in your seat for practically the whole day. After awhile it can be hard for people to suppress their natural tendencies.

    Also what is wrong with chewing gum? Folks at gpf were eating poutine!
  12. emason

    emason Well-Known Member

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    No, it's a matter of manners and respect for others. IMHO, no one should be saying anything, not uttering a syllable so long as a skater is performing on ice and music is playing. You are in the arena to watch and enjoy a performance and to give the competitor on ice your full attention. Whispering, talking, etc. to your companions is for when the program is over. People don't pay hard-earned $$$ to listen to others; they pay it to get the full impact of the program, and that includes being able to concentrate on the music, not the people in the seats near you.
  13. Jemestone

    Jemestone New Member

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    Heh, at the ballet right now (intermission) and an annoying group of kids just moved right behide me....GREAT :rolleyes:
  14. PeterG

    PeterG Argle-Bargle-ist

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    There is a difference between people who talk LOUDLY through the ENTIRE performance...and those who whisper to their friend as much as they like.

    There is a difference between eating like a HUMAN BEING...and taking a big friggin' scoop of poutine, shovelling it into my mouth and then moving my face three inches from yours while chomping away on said poutine in your face. SCHLURP, GLOMP, SHMACK!!! (Point being that you don't need to make everyone in your section aware that yes indeed, your ARE in fact eating - whether it be popping bubble gum or whatever else.)
  15. agalisgv

    agalisgv Well-Known Member

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    For some, manners and respect for others means not butting your nose into other people's business and telling them how they should behave at a sporting event so others can pretend they are attending a Broadway performance.

    Some people see nothing wrong with doing that, but others may find that immensely rude--moreso than any perceived offense caused by gum-popping or chatting.

    Like I said, different perspectives and all....
  16. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    Not it is not about different perspectives. And there is no justification for it.

    That is like saying that everyone has to accept the one arsehole who lives in a neighbourhood who drives everyone crazy with their doof doof music. The arsehole's attitude is if you have a problem with it you move. That is not fair and not how a civilised society should behave.
  17. Casey2

    Casey2 Member

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    At the recent Cleveland Nats, a guy next to us was talking constantly to his wife about 'nothing'. ("Wow, look at that costume! Can you just buy material like that?" ) When Bradley started to skate he said "Wow! He is one big dude!" It was there first Nats and you wanted to cut him some slack, but the constant chatter was really annoying. At a Zamboni break, the woman in front of him turned around and said, "You aren't at home in your living room. Please don't talk during a performance." This worked, but he then felt free to comment more loudly when there was no skating.

    I am disturbed by the number of people who walk in during a performance. If you are trying to decide lutz or flutz, having someone pass in front of you is a real bummer. In NC, if I was waiting at the entrance for a skater to finish and someone started down the stairs, I would ask them to wait. No one got offended, but they seemed surprised at the suggestion.
  18. sequins

    sequins New Member

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    Agree 150%! I've got that arsehole in my neighbourhood:lol: Roaring craptacular music on a Tuesday night at 4a.m. what's the problem with that?:rolleyes:The problem with society today is that people have a 'different perspective' on manners and respect and that's why no one has any. Common decency shouldn't be difficult for anyone to figure out but looking around I'm afraid it's all too difficult.

    When I think about it I can probably compare skating more to tennis, but seriously why pay for a ticket and go and force everyone to watch and listen to your personal crap and opinions, we pay to watch skating not you and your 'dramatics'.
  19. lowtherlore

    lowtherlore New Member

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    You can have some annoying cases spoiling your day, but speaking of some athletes talking in the audience during others' skates I would cut them some slack. Figure skating events are essentially sporting events, more so to the skaters than to the fans. Fans would often want to connect with their favorites' programs, but for the skaters and other practitioners of the sport the attention I guess would be predominantly drawn to the technical side of the execution. I mean, it would be like baseball fans exchanging comments at a baseball park after each pitch or play. Once I was seated next to some young skaters and staff members from the U.S., Canadian and Russian teams and they talked nonstop through the last two groups, but it didn’t bother me that much. The competition music was loud enough and I had little problem paying attention to what’s happening on the ice.
  20. allezfred

    allezfred Prick Admin Staff Member

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    Either you haven't attended very many skating competitions or the ones you go to are competely different than the ones I've been to :shuffle:, but I would definitely say there is an accepted etiquette at skating competitions and it is outside of that etiquette to talk constantly while a skater is performing their programme.

    Skating is a sport, but at the same time because of the artistic element involved it is different from most other sports. There aren't very many other sports where people in the crowd are knitting or are throwing stuffed toys and flowers at the competitiors. :lol:

    The announcements about flash photography (and ensuring that flowers etc are covered when thrown on the ice) are about the safety of the skaters and not an etiquette issue per se.

    The announcers don't tell people not to belch or fart either. Doesn't mean they are acceptable things to be done in public though does it?;)
  21. npavel

    npavel Well-Known Member

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    I have no problem with texting. In fact, not every competition is televised (at least not live) and there are people home waiting for how the competition goes. So thank you to all of you who text out or tweet so we can be part of the event.
    On the other hand it doesn't disturb the competition. People who cheer is really a positive note.
    It's bothering if people around try to find fowls in each skater or made so much noise with food and exchange of that so you can only see people in front of you instead of the skater
  22. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    Oh I don't know. It would make a very interesting competition as every skater fell over that the audience farted in unison.
  23. RD

    RD Well-Known Member

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    Probably a good thing I've never been to a competition...honestly, it wouldn't even have occurred to me to treat it like I would treat attending a show. At the baseball and basketball games I've been to, people get up and walk around all the time- during gameplay as well as during timeouts. I mean, as long as you're not blocking people's view for an extended period of time (i.e. not just trying to get past)...and of course, people are free to talk as they please.
  24. agalisgv

    agalisgv Well-Known Member

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    I tend to see that as reflective of skating fans being largely middle-aged suburbanite women. And that rather goes back to my point--certain demographics of fans may want figure skating to more resemble a proper outing to the Met. Such people are more likely to to follow figure skating and Broadway/ballet productions as opposed to figure skating and the NBA playoffs. So some want figure skating competitions to be conducted like an evening at the opera.

    But it seems most of the complaints regarding audience behavior is directed towards audience members who don't fit that same middle-aged female suburbanite sensibility. The criticisms have generally been directed at skaters sitting in the stands and more occasional fans. But skaters tend to be much younger, and occasional fans are more likely to compare figure skating competitions with other sports events rather than the opera.

    IMO, hardcore skating fans tend to assume they make up the bulk of viewers, but I don't think that's the case by a long-shot. So you have a vocal minority (people who want absolute silence at comps) of a vocal minority (hardcore skating fans) trying to enforce their personal preferences on larger audiences, without ever considering that perhaps their preferences have no more validity than those of the other viewers present.

    Personally I don't see it as a big issue because as lowthelore noted, the music is generally played so loud, it's not like you can't still hear it despite others talking. Course, by playing the music loudly, people have to talk louder to be heard by those sitting next to them, so there's a bit of a Catch-22 in all of it.

    Anyhow, I'm not a big talker personally at comps. But I do think some folk tend to look for ways to be offended, and when you start policing things like chewing gum, I tend to think the problem lies more with the person experiencing constant offense than the gum-chewer :shrug:.
  25. allezfred

    allezfred Prick Admin Staff Member

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    That may be the case in North America, but the demographic is different in Europe and very much so in Asia and yet the etiquette is the same.

    Then who do you think is paying 700 euros for an all-event ticket to see Worlds? Because I think you'll find it's not casual skating fans. :lol:
  26. Rock2

    Rock2 New Member

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    Word. Why is 'whispering' a lost art? Or is it actually a skill you have to learn to do!??!?

    So aside from the clear situations of classless fans it does come down a lot to the fact that a % of audience (whatever it is) watches as a sport and a % watches as a show or art performance. So there is going to be that rub.

    I'm somewhere in between. I talk during performances but (I think) I keep it low and to a minimum....and then babble waiting for the marks. It does bug me a little when people talk loud and non stop....especially when it's about something other than what's happening in the arena.
  27. nubka

    nubka Well-Known Member

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    What's a "guy chewing guy?" :D
  28. BreakfastClub

    BreakfastClub Active Member

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    I'm going to take this thread as an opportunity to bitch about what I think is one of the worst features CoP has inflicted upon us - LOUD POP MUSIC IN THE ARENA IN BETWEEN SKATERS WHILE WAITING FOR MARKS. There. I shouted it!

    I'm a hardcore fan, usually there with a vocal gang and I've been accused a lot in the past of talking to much (ok, scolded ;)) and have mostly reformed. The best alternative is to chatter at length after each skate.

    TPTB have decided that the audience needs to be distracted from the long wait times to get marks under CoP :rolleyes: so they now require the arena to play music - often loudly, and Canada and the US are the worst volume offenders - from the second the skater steps off the ice until the second before the marks are announced.

    Makes it hard to talk about the performance immediately afterwards - which to me is critical to attendance and being a fan. And I also find it really overstimulating. I like the quiet in between skaters to socialize, discuss and think. I don't need the Weather Girls or Adele or KT Tunstall blaring "Suddenly I See... !" while I'm trying to discuss with my friend sitting 3 seats away if Ashley fully rotated her flip or not. :slinkaway
  29. agalisgv

    agalisgv Well-Known Member

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    You seriously think the majority of audience members are paying 700 euros/1000 dollars for all-event tickets?

    Many businesses purchase bulk tickets and make them available to employees. A lot of those tickets go unused, and is one reason why you have large pockets of unused seats in the lower arena. Then you have people buy tickets for one event, and that's it.

    I'm sure the dynamics will vary in different regions, though.
  30. allezfred

    allezfred Prick Admin Staff Member

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    At ISU championships not a majority, but a significant number. In most cases it is much better value than buying individual tickets. But even those buying individual tickets would more likely than not be classified as hardcore skating fans by the very fact that they are attending a skating competition. ;)

    Well, at least they aren't talking through the programmes and annoying people. ;)

    Fact of the matter is that figure skating is a fairly genteel and polite sport and you can opine that it shouldn't matter that people have a chat during someone's skate, but it's not the done thing. If you don't think so then you obviously haven't been to many skating events. :)
  31. agalisgv

    agalisgv Well-Known Member

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    It's a significant number if the audience turnout is low. In a full arena, it's a pretty small minority.
    Only if you are going to attend everything. But that's the point--most people aren't up to doing that, and thus only buy tickets for one or two events (at most).
    Under that logic, everyone who attends a baseball game would be a hardcore fan since who else would attend?

    I think the flawed reasoning in that is rather obvious.
    Certainly fifty years ago, it was commonplace to see audience members sporting fur coats and the like. But it has been an intentional effort for quite some time now to move figure skating away from the upper crust to more mainstream audiences. And as that happens, you see less fur coats, and more casual fans with less expectations of gentility.

    There's a reason loud pop music is played throughout competitions--to make the sport more entertaining for casual fans.

    Now, you may bemoan the masses sullying the precious audiences of figure skating competitions with their lack of proper gentility :drama:, but times change and it is what it is. If figure skating is to be seen as a sport, then it will have to make some accommodations with the larger worlds of sports--including general sports fans (gauche as they may seem to others).

    ;)

    ETA: All sarcasm aside, I think Rock2 got it right:
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2012
  32. acraven

    acraven Active Member

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    I completely agree. And it's not just between skaters; the music blasts during Zamboni breaks and 6-minute warmups as well. I now make it a point to complain about the noise level (which is often borderline physically painful to me) at the USFS booth early in the week, and I try to speak to the organizing committee for the next year's Nationals, just to point out that fans like to be able to converse with their seatmates. It's clear that they aren't going to eliminate the background music, but a concerted effort by attendees might get the volume lowered.
  33. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    :lol: I meant "gum chewing guy". Although reading it that way now does have a different meaning.
  34. Bournekraatzfan

    Bournekraatzfan New Member

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    I think you make some valid points and I don't think our viewpoints are all that dissimilar. Let me clarify my views on the matter.

    Okay, positionality is important, so I should say that I am speaking as a 20-something woman who enjoys many sports (including basketball) but none as much as figure skating. I would identify as a hard-core fan, though a hard-core fan who still pays tuition, so I cannot afford all-event tickets.

    I think we have to be careful about making generalizations about a particular demographic as similarities in age and social class do not necessarily translate to similar views and preferences.

    One point I was trying to make in my earlier post is that most people who have expressed concern over these behaviours in this thread do not seem to be asking for absolute silence. This has been explicitly stated by some. We just want people to refrain from talking LOUDLY or doing anything that makes excessive noise during the actual performances (I am perfectly fine with people talking softly or using electronic devices that do not make loud beeping or ringing noises such that those around them can't hear the music properly or focus on what is going on on the ice). And I am fine with people being noisy between performances. As I said before, the performances are so short and the breaks so frequent that I hardly see this as an unreasonable request. And we are not just thinking of ourselves here--some of us have pointed out that we find it disrespectful to the skaters who are performing at the time. If a significant number of people talked throughout a performance, that noise would become audible on the ice. Can you imagine how that skater would feel, not to mention how distracting it might be for him/her/them? This is another reason why I hope this doesn't become more common.

    I also want to point out that it is gum-smacking, not gum-chewing, that has been identified as an annoying behaviour. I have not had anyone do this at an event I attended, but I know that sound can be very loud and distracting (again, during a performance). I am hardly the type to get offended easily, nor do I perceive my way of doing things as the way of doing things, but one could say that about someone who is affronted when asked to refrain from loud and distracting behaviour during an actual performance. I think we should all try to be considerate of those around us when we are in public. And since we are at a skating event, I think it is reasonable to expect that the people attending would like to pay attention to the skating.

    I agree that we all have different ideas about and understandings of etiquette, and some people do like to impose their ideas on others. But that could be said about any rule, law, or expectation about behaviour. We will never agree completely on the terms, but hopefully we can compromise enough so that we can all coexist peacefully, and in this case, enjoy the event :)
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2012
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  35. Bournekraatzfan

    Bournekraatzfan New Member

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    yes, I would find a guy-chewing guy very distracting too:)
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2012
  36. AxelAnnie

    AxelAnnie Well-Known Member

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    I just think people have either lost, or have never been properly trained in manners. It is simply rude to talk during a performance - and that is what skating is (I know it is a sport......but it is not like football where the crowd "roaring" is a good thing)

    Good manners would dictate speaking softly (if you feel the need to comment). The same people who (rudely IMO) are loud at skating competitions are the same people who talk so loudly on their cell phones in restaurants, markets or wherever (really, I don't want to hear about your problems when I don't even know you!)

    If you pay for a ticket and go to a skating event, you want maybe three things
    1. To keep warm.
    2. Your favorite to win
    3. Watch the skating...in peace and quiet (except for the music, of course).
  37. JJH

    JJH Well-Known Member

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    If we were discussing a noisy group of kids who chattered non-stop, I think that most of us would probably disapprove of the behavior and expect the parents to do something about it. Do adults who loudly and continuously pontificate throughout the skating get a free pass?

    I have a question. Why would spectators behave the same way at all sporting events? Does the crowd at a golf tournament, the superbowl and a tennis match behave in the same way?
  38. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    Depends how good-looking they are. :D. Or if they are two skaters doing Brokeback Mountain on Ice.
  39. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    I used to encounter rude people at COI, but at GP and World competitions I've been to, most of the audience members have been respectful. The only @$$hat I encountered was Phil Hersh who kept getting up and blocking my view to get ice cream, and stood, pointed and laughed when Nobunari Oda fell in the SP at 09 Worlds :(
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  40. Quintuple

    Quintuple papillon d'amour

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    Even my own friends are not exempt. If I ever get a friend to come to a local skating or gymnastics competition with me, I'll whisper, "Tell ya later!" if they start asking me something in the middle of a performance. Then I just lean over and whisper. It's kinda like how even if I find food in a restaurant really bad, I'll wait until we're outside and quite a distance away to start talking about it.

    That said, I do like overhearing *useful* information at skating competitions. But nothing's worse than a know-it-all loudmouth who actually knows nothing.

    There's a gal at work who keeps getting into fights at movie theaters. Once, she was with her husband, and two girls walked in late, in front of them, talking.

    Husband: "Don't ... just don't ..."

    (held back frustration)

    Then one of their phones rang.

    (fist)

    Husband: "Don't! Just let it go!"

    Phone rang again. Girl took the call, loudly.

    Husband: "I am not breaking up this fight."

    Girl from work: "Shh ..."

    Girl on phone: "WHAT?"

    Girl from work: "Excuse me, we're trying to watch the movie."

    Girl on phone: "EXCUSE YOU, WHAT DID YOU SAY? I AM ON THE PHONE."

    Girl from work: "I said, unless you want to know what your phone TASTES like, I suggest you take your conversation outside. Or do you want us both to take your conversation outside?"

    Girl on phone: "Gotta go, bye." Hung up phone.
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