Clegg sympathy for mobile complaint
Nick Clegg has expressed "sneaking sympathy" for a Sainsbury's checkout worker who refused to serve a customer because she was talking on her mobile phone.
The Deputy Prime Minister said he understood why the supermarket apologised to 26-year-old Jo Clarke, who was ordered to end her conversation by the woman staff member.
But he admitted that it drove him "round the bend" when people constantly had their "noses glued" in smartphones and iPads.
Mr Clegg was asked about the incident in Crayford, south-east London, during his weekly LBC radio phone-in.
"I strongly suspect I have spoken on the phone in a queue. I like to think I probably wouldn't do that at the front of a check-in queue," the Liberal Democrat leader replied.
"If the customer was not responding, then the check-out woman couldn't do her job and she's perfectly entitled to ask 'Well, do you want it or not?'.
"I have a sneaking sympathy for her. But I understand Sainsbury's have to be on the side of their customers."
Mr Clegg said he and wife Miriam try to avoid using phones and iPads at the dinner table with their three sons - although he conceded it was not a "rigid" rule.
"I have sat in numerous meetings where people don't look each other in the eye - they drop in and out of the conversation," he said.
"It drives me round the bend. I have an old-fashioned view that people are supposed to talk to each other. They don't - they just mumble at each other."