No phones allowed

The no-phones policy illuminated something about smartphone use that’s hard to see when it’s so ubiquitous: our phones drain the life out of a room. They give everyone a push-button way to completely disengage their mind from their surroundings, while their body remains in the room, only minimally aware of itself. Essentially, we all have a risk-free ripcord we can pull at the first pang of boredom or desire for novelty, and of course those pangs occur constantly.

~ David Cain from,

It has always seemed obvious to me that being focused on a screen, at the expense of the other person, was obviously bad. This used to bother me.

Now, when it happens I check my premises: Am I, right this instant, actually more interesting than the entire world in their hands?