Saturday, January 28, 2012

10 things that I can't prevent myself from whining about

I just need a quick venting session.  I don't want this to become a habit, but I just need to whine about a few things, and get them out of my system.  And then I'll go away.

So here they are, in no particular order - 10 things that I need to whine about before I burst:

1.  My aging body - New things start creaking, cracking and aching every day.  I have to keep tweezers handy at all times to deal with the sudden outburst of chin hairs.  And I have to psych myself up to do jobs that were once no-brainers: haul multiple laundry loads up or down stairs, clean windows and shovel snow, for example.

2.  People who complain about the weather - I find them more annoying than the weather itself.  Sometimes I think people feel they are entitled to certain weather events, and they feel cheated when those events don't come about.  C'mon, people!  Mother Nature doesn't owe you snow on Christmas, a clear 75 degree Independence Day or tulips in full bloom on Easter.

3.  Four-way stops - Somewhere in the crowded tenements of our brain storage systems, we as a species seem to have lost the ability to understand four-way stops.  I own a teenager who is learning to drive, and I'd love to be able to say it's just inexperienced beginners fouling up the watching-and-counting process that takes place at these arcane traffic meeting places.  But like as not, the person who usually screws up at these intersections is an adult with a phone to their ear, driving a beautiful car I can't afford to hit, no matter how satisfying it may feel at the moment.  I am beginning to suspect that  Lexus owners' manuals instruct their drivers that a short brake-tap is all that is required of them at four-way stops.

4.  Parents who harass or berate volunteers when their child doesn't get what they want -  I have volunteered for many activities - charitable, musical, athletic, etc. - and have discovered a link between parent volunteerism and parent manners.  Generally, parents who volunteer to help with their child's activites, like coaching a team, working at a meet or competition or being a room parent, are patient and understanding about last-minute glitches, adjustments in schedule, and the many other things that can crop up when trying to herd a group of young people for an activity.  The parents who make a stink over Little Johnny having to sit out an inning or Little Judy having to wait ten minutes past her scheduled performance time never seem to be volunteers.  I have no way of knowing that for sure, but my gut tells me it's true.

5.  Wet dog smell - That probably doesn't need an explanation.

6.  Cold feet - I don't mind cold ears, hands, nose or any other body part that comes to mind.  But when my feet are cold, I'm miserable.  This has always been true, even when I lived down south and rarely got cold.  Nothing ruins my sweet, sunny disposition like icy toes.  And once they get cold, it takes major thermodynamic intervention to get them warm again.  Interestingly, this phenomenon can occur any time of year, and can happen to me in a warm, cozy house.  I have lots of plush socks, blankets and even some microwaveable slippers, but the best medicine is foot rub from the husband.  Unfortunately, I'm rarely well-behaved enough to earn one of those. 

7.  Self-scanners at the grocery store - Given my issues with technology, this probably doesn't come as a surprise.  No matter how few items I have or how straightforward the UPC label, I seem to always set off the siren on the pole at my location; I've come to think of it as "The Flashing Light of Mortification."  Whether it is a coupon that doesn't compute or the sensor thinks I'm trying to shoplift my winter coat on the bottom of the buggy, I can't seem to complete a transaction without a minimum of two visits from a store employee with a large keyring of importance and rolling "you again?" eyes.  Excuse me for trying to take the "easy" way out.  It won't happen again.  I am your paying customer.  Please be kind enough to check out and bag my groceries, and if you can spare a second, some eye contact and direct speech is appreciated.

8.  Snoring - It's one of those awkward, unanswerable questions every child asks one day..."Mommy?  Why do fish have to die?  Why do stuffed animals get lost?  Why did God invent snoring?" My feeling is, if it must happen, why can't it only take place only after I fall into a deep slumber?  Eric won the Silver at Montreal in the Nasal/Epiglottis combo event in'92, and he's really never slacked off on his training or dedication, even after all these years.  He is a proud world-class snorer, and I respect that, but some nights it makes me wish for an invisible cattle prod.

9.  The words "bore," "boring" and "bored" - My girls know better than to ever tell me that they are...I can hardly even think this awful word.  The hardest, nastiest chores are assigned to the person stupid enough to utter that word in my presence.  Boredom is a choice, and only stupid people choose to be bored.  Hrmph!

10.  Whiners who whine about other whiners - Oops! I guess I'd better sign off now!

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