Don’t Hate the Person Whose Cellphone Ruined the New York Philharmonic

iphoneA few days ago, something happened at the New York Philharmonic that not only was unprecedented, but that really encompasses the age in which we're living. The iPhone of a spectator who was sitting in the front row rang in the middle of the performance. And not just any ring, that annoying "Marimba" ring.

The incident happened during a crucial moment of the performance (during the final movement of Gustav Mahler's Ninth Symphony, if you know about that sort of stuff), and Maestro Alan Gilbert was so irritated that he stopped the entire performance and waited for the ringing to stop. Aw-kward.

Now I know everybody's probably thinking that whoever left their phone on is a serious jerk, but ... what if he or she had a good reason? Yes, there could be a good reason to leave your ringer on during a Philharmonic performance ... right?


Who knows what was going on in Cellphone Person's life? For all we know, this was a mom who left her children for the first time while her 1-month-old baby was sick (she couldn't get out of the tickets; they were already bought)? Or perhaps it was someone waiting to hear about a life-or-death test result? I know, odds are that's not the case, but, I'm just saying: You never know.

To most, the obvious answer to such a dilemma is to just leave the phone on vibrate, right? Well, I'm going to play devil's advocate here and say: We all know that vibrate doesn't always work. I've missed many a phone call because my phone has been on vibrate -- usually only the important ones, though, so it's cool.

The only part of this story where I won't come to this person's defense is the not answering part. If you're going to leave your ringer on during a Philharmonic performance because of an emergency, you best have that bad boy on your lap the entire time and pick it up (and talk on it after you exit), or silence it the second it goes off. The fact that the person didn't follow such a protocol, of course, lends itself to the theory that there wasn't an emergency and they were just inconsiderate, but still, I'm defending them. Just 'cause.

Do you ever leave your cellphone on when you "shouldn't"?


Image via MattsMacintosh/Flickr

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