Mar. 8: Restraining Orders, or "get out of my dreams and also out of my car"

You know, it's very easy to criticize. Fun, too.

Today, for your reading pleasure, I'm going to share some of the things that really bug me. Because it would be impossible for me to rate these things by degrees of annoying-ness, they're in no particular order. You'll notice that many of the things that bug me are writing- and grammar-related. My sister's list is identical in that way; blame our perfection-obsessed parents.

My Airing of Grievances
with apologies in this non-Festivus season

  • Incorrect usage of your and you're, it's and its, their and they're and there, to and too. A typo is one thing. If you really don't know the difference, though... did you pay no attention in grade school English class??? Sheesh.
  • Watching my mom prepare her coffee. First, she waters it down, and then destroys it further by adding powdered creamer, even when there's the perfectly good liquid kind in the fridge! And then she DRINKS it!
  • Over-using exclamation points!!! If I do it, it's because it's necessary. No one else has a good excuse.
  • People that don't signal when changing lanes; I want to know that you know where you're going. People that try to merge on the freeway at 40mph. People that go the speed limit in the fast lane; first, it's there for passing, not for driving, and even if you think you're forcing everyone to obey the law, you're really just a traffic hazard and the source for much road rage. Someday when someone shoots at you it will be because you deserve it.
  • Inconsiderate neighbors (not just mine). You know who you are. Actually, you probably don't, but if you did you wouldn't change. You're just that way, aren't you?
  • That more people don't listen to my brilliant ideas. I have many.
  • People using apostrophes where they don't belong, as in, "Lot's of people have brilliant idea's, but not as many as my friend's and I do." Also incorrectly using plurals, like "skys" or "sky's" instead of "skies." Have you heard the good news about spell-checkers?
  • Not using spell-checkers.
  • People that don't take responsibility for their actions. "Ouchie, I spilled coffee on my nether regions because I put it in my lap even though I knew it was super hot. Now McDonalds must PAY!" Because of you, food packaging now says things like, "Warning: Product will be hot after heating."
  • Houses painted in hideous colors in neighborhoods of houses painted in non-hideous colors.
  • Return envelopes that say, "Tampering with this envelope or its contents will result in legal action." I don't know how serious the threat is, but it interferes with my habit of returning crap mail to senders just to show them how annoying it is to receive crap mail. A Sharpie used to be enough to fix identifying info on the outside of envelopes, but now I'm too a-scared!
  • Web sites with ridiculous shipping rates. They suck. Also, poorly designed shopping cart systems on store web sites. Ya gonna have a web presence? Make it work.
  • Reruns in prime-time.
  • Bad tippers. Like it or not, in this country, it's customary. Don't embarrass your dining companions by being cheap.
  • That annoying shortcut language that's become popular and accepted thanks to chat rooms and messaging. You know, using "u" instead of "you," "2" instead of "to" or "too," "b4" instead of "before." The abbreviations don't bother me--LOL, BRB, IMHO, etc. It's the weird Prince-like spelling that gives me the shivers.
  • That Crispix is so expensive. Other cereals are expensive too, but Crispix is my favorite. Seems every time it's on sale the store has, like, four boxes in stock. Stooopid store.
  • Expiration dates.
  • The dash lights in my car. Too much red! It looks like a freakin' cockpit at night. As much as I love Volkswagens, it's always something with them. At least everything is still working in the Passat, unlike my Jetta, which had odd little electrical problems from the start.
  • The fact that if not for Hitler, Volkswagen might not even exist. I just found out, thanks to Yahoo!'s question of the day, that that German Ethel Merman ordered development of what eventually became the Beetle. I blame my goofy dash lights on him.
  • Putting two spaces between sentences or between the state and zip or after a colon. The "two spaces" rule went out with typewriters and fixed-width fonts. Stop it.

That's all for today, kids. Maybe tomorrow I will share a few of my favorite things, like raindrops on roses, whiskers on kittens, bright copper kettles, and warm woolen mittens.

Or not.



  1. Well, I don't have to tell you how I feel about grammar and punctuation. I'm pretty sure that's what has glued together my friendship with your sister all these 26 years. I have to admit my ignorance of the two space rule but I am closer to the typewriter era than you are. I will get on the bandwagon with that from now on though.

    Here's a few of my pet peeves for your enjoyment:

    (interesting how a lot of them involve cars - wonder what that means???)

    1. Loud cars. Hate them.
    2. Smelly cars. Inside or out. Hate them. If you insist on having velour interior never sweat or eat in your car. Ever. And if you have an exhaust problem - don't drive. Ever. At least around me.
    3. Which leads me to another grievance - people who drive around town without their recirculating button on. Do they just like getting high on fumes?
    4. People who smoke in cars with kids in the back seat. Need I say more?
    5. Any store where you have to unload a cart at the register. And this is tough for me because I love Target and fight it every time I go there (which is about 3 times a week!).
    6. People who wear too much perfume/cologne/after shave and think they smell good.

    There you have it. Sounds a little petty when you put it on "paper." :)

  2. Here's my pet peeve, people who don't use quotes when referring to something that should have at least "air qoutes" around it. I just spent half the afternoon Googling only to find out there was no German "Ethel Merman"!

  3. In my best Horshack impression, "Ooh, ooh! I want to amend my list!"

    All that stuff Lori said. That's on mine too. Lori, you're so very, very wise. I never doubted Kath for a second though.

    And Martin, if I could type finger quotes you know I would use them WAY too much. But my "Springtime for Hitler" ("The Producers") reference apparently just flew right pass-cha. So sorry. Please feel free to point out more of my flaws as you expand your list of peeves, pet or otherwise.

    Google "Springtime for Hitler" lyrics. You won't be disappointed.



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