Sometimes when I want to eat out but don't have anyone to dine with I take a book to read during my meal. Sometimes I also read before a play begins. Recently an older woman came up to my table at a restaurant and told me it was very rude to read in public. I was shocked and embarrassed. I never read when I'm with others. Is it rude to read in public?
PRUDENCE: Apparently there is a cadre of people who would like to increase the amount of illiteracy in the world. They think we should all stare straight ahead when we are relieving ourselves, or waiting for an event, or enjoying a dinner out alone. Having a nice meal while engrossed in a good book sounds like a delightful evening—I'm one of those people who when dining alone would end up reading the ingredients on the Tabasco bottle if I didn't have a book with me. I assume the old lady also goes around pulling out people's earbuds and spilling ink on their crossword puzzles. She was a nut—ignore her remarks.
All I wish to add is, if this older woman is conducting this intervention on people reading books, the mere presence of smartphones must make her head explode.