I had to go see a specialist this morning so I brought a book along with me because waiting rooms are normally the perfect place to catch up on a little reading. This one, not so much.
When I opened the door to the office, I went directly to the counter to announce my presence and get things set in motion to see the doctor. I heard what sounded like Harry Potter in the background. I turned around to see a large television showing a nature documentary. The voice-over was done in the traditional soft spoken way by a man with a British accent.
I wasn’t interested in watching this program but one gentleman in the waiting area seemed to be. If he wasn’t looking at the screen, I would have tried to turn it off. I’ve done it before in other waiting rooms. Most notably the one where I get my oil changed. I’d rather read a book than watch something for a few minutes that really doesn’t interest me.
I tried reading my book but the visual noise of the large television wasn’t the only distraction. The volume was a little too loud for a small waiting room too. But even worse, there was a radio playing in the back rooms for the staff and it bled through to the waiting room as well.
This is a common problem. There is so much visual noise around. I don’t know why businesses feel the need to have screens in waiting rooms, dining areas, and behind the cashiers. The screens aren’t needed. Most people carry a screen on their person these days. Let them entertain themselves. Let me read by book in peace.
I understand having a radio on, but please keep it at a respectable volume. And let’s reconsider having a television on all the time. We don’t need the background noise. Remember when waiting rooms just had magazines. These weren’t intrusive to anyone who didn’t want to read them. They were available for anyone but not forced on them. Let’s get back to that and cut out the visual and noise pollution.