Stop the ruckus!

The Saratogian (Saratoga, NY) - - YOUR DAILY BREAK - An­nie Lane

DEAR AN­NIE >> I just got back from a trip visit­ing my fam­ily across the coun­try and some­thing fol­lowed me from sea to shin­ing sea — peo­ple watch­ing videos, lis­ten­ing to mu­sic and play­ing video games loudly and with­out head­phones for the most part, too. What is with this?

I first no­ticed it when a young boy next to me at the air­port was play­ing on his iPad with the video game noises on high. His par­ents seemed obliv­i­ous to the ob­vi­ous dis­tur­bance. Next, some­one was video con­fer­enc­ing their part­ner, with­out head­phones or even mov­ing to a less crowded space, as we were board­ing. Yet another per­son was blast­ing her mu­sic on the plane; I could hear it from two rows back! Fi­nally, af­ter land­ing, I got on the train to head home and this el­derly cou­ple kept pass­ing their phones back and forth, shar­ing videos while a guy down the train car played his mu­sic through his speak­er­phone.

This rude phe­nom­e­non spans gen­er­a­tions and gen­der, seem­ingly, but I can’t be the only one who is dis­turbed by this trend. An­nie, what’s the best way to ap­proach peo­ple who can’t seem to keep their mu­sic to them­selves? — Thanks for Not Shar­ing

DEAR THANKS FOR NOT SHAR­ING >> Your let­ter pro­vides a won­der­ful de­scrip­tion of what all of us are putting up with these days. Try­ing to block the noise out and go­ing into a men­tal bub­ble can be chal­leng­ing. It is amaz­ing how a few rude peo­ple can ruin your day — if you let them. Maybe the best so­lu­tion is to keep head­phones with you and put them on for two rea­sons >> one, to show them your good ex­am­ple, and, two, to block out the inconsider­ate peo­ple. Let’s hope some en­light­ened leg­is­la­tors will pass a law ad­dress­ing this is­sue.

DEAR AN­NIE >> To­day I read in the news about the fuss over a Star­bucks em­ployee mis­un­der­stand­ing some­one’s name and writ­ing ISIS in­stead of AZIZ. This would not have been a prob­lem if busi­nesses would quit in­sist­ing on get­ting your first name when you or­der. I am per­fectly happy be­ing a num­ber and re­sent how some places in­sist on ask­ing my name. I am not your new best friend; I am your cus­tomer and de­serve the re­spect that comes with that. Also, I feel it puts women and young teens at risk when their name is an­nounced to a room full of strangers. Yes, you could al­ways give a fake name, but most peo­ple don’t. I do get a kick out of say­ing my name is Wendy at Wendy’s. To all busi­nesses, please stop this prac­tice and go back to numbers. Maybe I will try telling them my name is No. 32.

— Pro­tect My Pri­vacy

DEAR PRO­TECT MY PRI­VACY >> Your let­ter brings up a great point about safety. While it is not as per­sonal, numbers seem like a bet­ter op­tion.

DEAR AN­NIE >> In re­sponse to the lady whose brother and sis­ter-in-law fight in front of the kids about whether to in­vest money or pay off the mort­gage ear­lier, there is an easy so­lu­tion. It is true that there are ben­e­fits to both sides of the ar­gu­ment, so why not com­pro­mise?

They can mu­tu­ally de­cide on an amount they are com­fort­able with. The first month they can in­vest it, and the sec­ond month it goes to­ward the prin­ci­ple on their mort­gage. It should make both of them happy and ev­ery­one wins, es­pe­cially the kids when peace is re­stored in the fam­ily. — A Re­tired Fi­nan­cial

Plan­ner

DEAR RE­TIRED FI­NAN­CIAL PLAN­NER >> I al­ways love hear­ing from pro­fes­sion­als in their field. Com­pro­mis­ing is a healthy so­lu­tion in most re­la­tion­ships, and your sug­ges­tion is a good one.

“Ask Me Any­thing: A Year of Ad­vice From Dear An­nie” is out now! An­nie Lane’s de­but book — fea­tur­ing fa­vorite col­umns on love, friend­ship, fam­ily and eti­quette — is avail­able as a pa­per­back and e-book. Visit http://

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