Often I have meals with pals who have their phones out the whole time: scrolling and texting, chatting with me, and eating at the same time. I don’t like it. Can I get them to tone it down? —Ali, City Withheld

ANSWER: Possibly. I too find it annoying when people can’t commit to me without phone checks. Every glance fractures the conversation. I’m not shy about speaking up: “Let’s put away our phones. They’re distracting.” Some people can oblige, while others experience phantom phone pain. Here’s the thing: We can be in the moment with someone or on the lookout for moments to post. Many folks try to do both, but multitasking is a slippery slope.

—Adapted from “Social Q’s” in The New York Times Magazine