A Telephone Experiment

Posted: June 19, 2016 in Psychology

“Things are in the saddle and ride mankind.”

–from Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Ode to William H. Channing

* * *

For some fun, try this the next time you have people over to the house: If your phone rings, ignore it. Just let it ring, don’t even look at it, don’t acknowledge in any way that it’s ringing, and see how your guests react.

If they’re anything like my friends, they’ll likely react with amazement and, probably, barely concealed horror. It’s hugely amusing. Somehow, they’re offended that you would rather talk with them than scurry to the beck and call of an inanimate object.

Try it and  see what happens. I think you’ll enjoy the experiment.

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