In another decade, mooning meant something completely different – showing your backside to unsuspecting strangers. Today it means utilizing the “do not disturb” feature on your iPhone.
The symbol is a half moon, which is designed to temporarily mute notifications from the contact you select. How I have longed to do this to strings of group texts from people who have nothing better to do with their time than respond to the masses with “thk u” or “adorbs!” – I am mooning!
Of course, I had to figure out how to moon a certain person rather than my entire contact list. I learned that I needed to go to overzealous texter, hit “details” on the string of texts, and then swipe right to engage “do not disturb.”
Mooning can serve as an alternative to blocking someone, which seems much more permanent and hostile. It allows you to simply exercise your right for a temporary break or much-needed quiet time.
It’s also a helpful tool to implement when you have a friend whose text notifications wake you up at 3:45 in the morning. Usually, they feel the need to tell you something urgent, like they “tried out the new Mexican restaurant,and it is not worth the drive down the block.” That is definitely information worth noting in the middle of my dreams!
Utilizing the feature is also a way to set boundaries without hurting your overbearing mother’s feelings, or your needy ex-boyfriend who can’t bring himself to stop texting, begging for forgiveness. It would feel too cruel to block them but not to secretly moon them.
One downside may be that you can still see their texts; it’s hard for me to ignore what I might be missing – perhaps something urgent like my friend visiting another new restaurant and actually enjoying it this time.
Never moon a client – it’s just not right. You can moon a friend if you don’t forget to un-moon them after you are finished with your nap or meeting.
It’s the alternative to the truth – which is sometimes harsh, but in the end, letting someone know you don’t have the margin to answer their flurry of texts or ill-timed messages is doing them a favor. They may even appreciate your candor and alter their texting behavior. It’s the right thing to do.
For more of my thoughts on this topic, be sure to visit Refinery29’s If You’re Not Already Mooning, You Need To Start.