A woman who works as a cashier at a Sainsbury's (the Loblaws of the U.K.) store in London refused to serve another woman, recently, who would not get off her cellphone for one bleedin' minute to transact courteously at the check-out counter. Good for the clerk! And shame on Sainsbury's for apologizing (apologizing?!) to the "customer". As it turns out, social media has sided with the bold actions of an employee of the evil empire. There has been a vocal "shame on Sainsbury's for siding with such a rude customer".
I've never worked the sales desk in title but I did work at a job where I would fill-in by manning the counter. You know what? I did the same thing one time, but the male cellphoner gave me no static after I said, calmly, "sir, I will serve you when you are finished with your call". Again, he was fine. What I executed, perfectly, is the "asking for it" method of client services, but he did not react in the way I expected, and was all too ready for; he simply -- and quickly -- finished his call and "properly" presented his credit card. Things were fine.
Maybe he reacted with no reaction because he saw, across the counter, one mean-looking bastard! (It may have been my Manchester United scarf which I've been known to wear, even inside, in order to show my colours. It takes a brave bloke to voluntarily tangle with a Man Utd supporter.)
Seriously, it's a skill -- one of the few I have.
Where do you stand on cellphone etiquette?