A weekend on call—64 straight hours of being at the mercy of any Nervous Nellie, Suspicious Sam, or Crotchety Carrie who insists on speaking to The Doctor—often leaves me feeling a bit … peevish.
So it was today that I got to musing on a few of my pet peeves.
I’m a live-and-let-live kind of person in general. Really. I notice when something is done wrong, but I don’t get worked up over it. Ok, sure, it bugs me when someone says “for you and I,” and I wish I could get people to believe that they don’t need to drink so much water. But as long as the only person who suffers the consequence of a mistake is the person who makes the mistake, I don’t much care.
It certainly distresses me when someone does something wrong that affects others. Littering, for example, or talking in a movie theater. But to really peeve me, a mistake has to not only mess things up for the rest of us, it has to require real energy on the part of the person making the error. Strenuous misguided labor that results in making things worse for others just chaps my ass. For instance:
Women standing up to pee. This is a silly practice. You really can’t catch anything from resting your thighs on a toilet seat. And it’s hard to do; it requires balance, strength, and concentration to avoid peeing on your own shoes. But why should I care if someone wants to get a mini quad workout in the restroom? Because it messes things up for the rest of us. Women can’t pee without splattering. Not necessarily a lot, but enough to baptize the toilet seat with a few stray droplets and cause an unpleasant splashing sensation for the next person who tries to sit down. This creates a moist domino effect: the next person is more likely to avoid sitting in the future, causing further splatter, and so on. Please, if it skeeves you out to rest your delicate thighs on a public toilet seat, either take some paper towels in with you to clean up after yourself when you’re finished (and remember, don’t flush them—just tuck them in the tampon box), or get one of these.
Using a car’s side mirrors as extra rear-view mirrors. The mirrors on the sides of the car are meant to reveal what’s in your blind spots. If you adjust them to show the back of your car, you are wasting your time, but worse, you are making it more likely that you will not be able to see the rest of us, and you may hit us. These are some good descriptions of how to properly position the side mirrors.
Installing Jacuzzi tubs in every frickin’ rehab and new construction in the country. Jacuzzis are stupid. I know of hardly anyone who actually uses theirs more than once a year. Jacuzzis are noisy, they take forever to fill, they use up all the hot water in the house, and they’re hard to clean. They take up a lot of space and cost a lot of money as well. But who do Jacuzzis really hurt? Well, anyone who wants to have a new bathroom with a real bathtub; it takes a lot of money to tear one out. But the Jacuzzi craze really hurts everyone, because they take twice the amount of hot water to fill one compared to a real bathtub, and they have motors. The amount of energy wasted on these dumb contraptions is outrageous.
What am I forgetting? Where have you noticed people striving mightily to do something completely idiotic and harmful? (Mentioning Hummers is too easy—that’s shooting ducks in a barrel. Dead ducks.)