Ask the Manners Guy: Small-Screen Supervision

Sometimes when it comes to small screen attachments, if you can't beat them, join them.

A young boy looking at his smartphone while he and his family are having dinner.

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Small Screen Supervision

My grandkids have their faces in their phones every time they come to my house. Their parents aren’t as strict as I would prefer about unplugging during family time. How can I encourage them to be more present? 

First, make sure you aren’t modeling bad behavior by checking your own phone every minute. Encourage them to put a pause on Pokémon Go and engage with the family by giving them a more exciting, stimulating, real-world experience. You’ll have to get creative with crafts, outside activities, and games. You could even catch some Pokémon with them instead of letting them have all the fun.

Take This Job and Love It

I accepted a job offer, then two weeks later my dream job called me back. I would hate to leave my new company hanging, but I really want this other job. Is there an acceptable way to burn this bridge?

Definitely accept the offer for your dream job, but get a confirmation in writing. There’s no pleasant way to quit a job you just started, but it’s best to be straightforward. Get your things together at your desk and go tell your boss. You can ask them for ways you can be helpful before you leave, but the odds are that you’ll be walking straight out of the building. Don’t feel guilty, though; you should always choose your career interests over your company’s.

The Manners Guy is a former bartender who knows his way around awkward social situations. Send your questions to [email protected].

This article is featured in the January/February 2020 issue of The Saturday Evening Post. Subscribe to the magazine for more art, inspiring stories, fiction, humor, and features from our archives.

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