Friday, June 1, 2007

The Four Levels of iPod Interaction

from The Urban Etiquette HandbookWhom you do and don’t have to unplug for.

LEVEL ONE
Continue at full blast. Consider increasing the vigor of your head-nodding and/or humming.
• Guys passing out bargain-electronics-store flyers.
• Idealistic-looking whippersnappers holding clipboards.
• Scientologists.

LEVEL ONE AND A HALF
Subtly turn down volume.
• People in the elevator you don’t know.
• Someone attractive who sits down next to you on the train while you are listening to the Goo Goo Dolls.

LEVEL TWO
Make a big show of pressing PAUSE.
• Anyone who approaches you while you’re working out.
• Non-panhandlers on the subway (may be helpfully pointing out that your bag is open, may be distracting you in a Gangs of New York–style pickpocket ruse).
• Co-workers you hate.
• Friends.
• Your parents, if you’re a teenager.

LEVEL THREE
Remove headphones, toss them jauntily over shoulder.
• People in the elevator you know.
• Anyone taking your money or instructions about how to prepare your food.
• Co-workers you don’t hate.
• Your parents, if you’re an adult.
• Police officers.

LEVEL FOUR
Completely remove and enclose in nearest pocket/bag/ purse.
• Co-workers who could have you fired in less than an hour.
• Anyone who’s crying.
• Police officers standing next to someone who’s pointing at you and saying, “That’s him!”

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