Phone Stack: Banning Mobile Phones from Dinner with Friends
The Phone Stack: You Phone or Text, You Pick Up the Dinner Bill
There's a new dinner game in town: The Phone Stack (aka Don't Be a D*ck During Dinner with Friends). It was invented, as it were, by a blogger named Stephie, and shared with me by former NowPublican Jason Sanders.
The rules to the Phone Stack game are very simple:
- Everyone places their mobile phones in the middle of the table.
- Whoever picks up their phone first, be it to call, answer a call, send a text, read a text, email, whatever, then must pick up the bill for the entire table.
- If the bill arrives before anyone has picked up their phone, the bill gets split as normal.
I recommend not being such a stickler or hardass on people about the rules and even initiation of the game. Basic premise is to just get people open to the idea of staying active and attentive to one another. But if someone has to take a call; they have to take a call =).
Yeah, it's Stephanie's game, but I disagree. Be a stickler. Be a hardass. The only exception should be if one of your party is an on-call doctor. Otherwise the call or text can wait until the end of dinner. You're a person, not a radio-controlled toy who hops whenever your plastic receiver beeps.
If your phone's ringtone is putting out that strong a lure to your attention, maybe you need to either put it on silent or get more interesting friends.
Nobody gives a shit about your food tweets anyway; you know that, right?
The Phone Stack is picking up steam: The Globe & Mail also discussed Phone Stacking, and eventually it will appear in other mainstream publications.
[If you're visiting a city and meeting up with loads of people in one evening, make sure to tell them beforehand that you'll contact them whenever you switch venues. That heads off the litany of "You still there?" texts. I've found this to be very effective.]