March 4, 2009

How To Provoke Me into a State of Annoyance that is Amusing to Behold.

Posted in Advice I have no business giving, The Gnomes, The WTF at 10:45 am by Dagny Taggart

I used to claim that my personal version of hell was being locked in a room filled with barking dogs and small children, while Celine Dion, Rod Stewart, Gloria Estefan, and Natalie Merchant played in an endless loop.

For a long time, that went unchanged, save for the addition of Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, and most of Nickelback’s catalogue to the soundtrack.

Other things that really bother me:

1)  Dirty dishes in the sink overnight.
2)  People who position themselves so as to take up more than one seat on public transportation (I’m looking at you, Men in Overcoats Who Sit With Legs Open).
3)  Slow walkers who take up entirely too much sidewalk.
4)  Misspelling/mispronunciation/misuse of the following:  Per se, Barnes and Noble, fringe benefits, supposedly, fazed/phased.  I’m sure there are more, but that last one can throw me into such a murderous rage that it has blocked all else from my brain.  I’ll need a moment.
. . .
5)  Use of the phrase “bridge and tunnel crowd” or variants on the same to apply to anyone other than those commuting into New York City.  Try something original, people.  That one is already taken, and only accurate in a few places.
6)  Superiority complexes, including my occasionally-manifested own.
7)  The fact that there’s just no good place to put your extra arm, when ensconced in bed with a significant other.  I need this.
8)  Squeaky ellipticals, and the people who use them anyway.
9)  Apathy.
10)  Hypocrisy, and Anonymous.  These two often go hand in hand.
11)  Obliviousness.
12)  Gnomes.

This post brought to you by an overcoat-wearing, slow-walking, headset-using, seat-overtaking fellow commuter whose legs were spread as he read, I kid you not, “The 8th Habit:  From Effectiveness to Greatness” by Mr. Covey.  How’s about you make a habit of being aware of, and considerate of, your fellow commuters?


  1. I-66 said,

    The word “irregardless.”

  2. Shannon said,

    Anyone who uses the word “literally” for emphasis.

  3. Lisa said,

    1. I love you.

    2. This could be my list except I didn’t think of it. And except for my #3.

    3. This is a version of hell I had not considered, but sounds truly, um, hellacious.

    4. I will use the squeakly (actually clunky better describes it) elliptical in the gym if it is the only one open. I hate it, but desperate times…

  4. I-66: Indeed. Also, people who say “I could care less” when they actually mean that they could NOT care less.

    Shannon: You know, I notice this in conversation, but had to search my own site to determine whether I’d done it in print. I’ll definitely be more conscious of it now, though!

  5. Lisa said,

    And also, I meant #4. Duh and oops.

  6. Lisa:

    a. The feeling is mutual.
    b. I can’t say I’m surprised at that.
    c. I would be quite curious to hear what your go-to version of hell is like.
    d. The people to whom I most strongly object are the ones that have the option of moving, but don’t. Especially when the exact same model is next to them, and available. Gah!

  7. I-66 said,

    Ohhh man. I hate “could care less.” I want to interrupt and ask how much they do care.

  8. Brian said,

    Affect/effect misuse still bothers me.

    And at what point did the past tense of the verb “to lead” become “lead”? I’m seeing it everywhere lately, and it makes my brain hurt.

    Although not literally.

  9. Shannon said,

    I will admit to being a constant mispronouncer of words. I have one of those epically big SAT-word vocabularies, but, as I learn all my words from crossword puzzles (vs. TV or conversation with sentient beings) I always mispronounce them.

    Literally, every time.

  10. vvk said,

    Two things that would go on my list:
    1) people who don’t appreciate silence, and so don’t give any thought to disturbing other’s enjoyment of the silence.

    2) people in densely populated areas (like the city) who let their dogs bark without trying to quiet them.

    2 is of course related to 1.

  11. Kevin said,

    The last windmill that really got me going was people who referred to Jan. 1, 2000 as the start of the new millenium. That one drove me nuts for a whole year.

    My dad pronouncing “Bruegger’s” as “Brueggle’s” is like someone rubbing styrofoam together.

    re #5, that kinda applies to the NoVa to DC commute. But still…

    #7, that looks amazing. No more “Do I move and wake her up because my arm’s asleep? Or do I just suffer in quiet agony to show how much I care?”

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