One loud person disrupted everyone’s reading

DEAR MISS MANNERS: A question for you about living rooms. I have no other way of putting this except to give an example:

A family sits down in the living room after dinner and everyone takes out their book to read. Everyone is silent except for one person, who is being very loud and rambunctious. Finally, one person, fed up with the noise, asks them to please stop and go elsewhere if they will continue to be loud.

Who is being rude?

GENTLE READER: Is the rambunctious person trying to make conversation? Or protesting reading time in favor of family togetherness?

In either case, Miss Manners suggests that the terms of the living room’s use should be made clear on any given evening. Otherwise, it should be renamed the library — and another room designated for more verbal activity.

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