The kids and I are slowly making our way through the Harry Potter series. We are just about to dive under the water to rescue friends from the mermaids in the Goblet of Fire.
Throughout the series is a poltergeist named Peeves. He has been there since AD 993. The name for the poltergeist come from “pet peeve,” which itself is derived from the 15th century word “peevish,” which itself was used to describe insane, foolish, or spiteful things. We all have pet peeves -- minor nuisances that bother us infernally.
Just yesterday I went to the Dillards at the new mall and was again reminded of one of my pet peeves -- ridiculous parking lot designs. Park on the side of Dillards by the Men’s Department and the door facing Wesleyan Drive. There some genius placed two parking lots and then entirely surrounded them by hawthorne bushes that are slowly growing together preventing anyone from walking conveniently out of those two lots. It makes me mad every time I forget about the bushes and park in those two lots.
Then there is the con game. I did not realize my wife was on to this scam too. In Georgia it is against the law for police to run a speed trap within 300 to 600 feet of a reduced speed limit sign. In other words, as you head into a small town that drops its speed limit from 55 mph to 25 mph, the police cannot set up a speed trap right there.
Never miss a local story.
There is no such corollary for speed increases (Paging Allen Peake. Paging John Kennedy). Exit Macon on Interstate 75 either northbound or southbound and you will find a delightful surprise. There, just past the on ramp from Pio Nono on the south bound lane of I-75 is a 55 mph sign. Within easy visual distance further south is a 65 mph sign. There is no rational reason for that 55 mph sign other to earn some revenue for the state when you see the 65 mph sign and accelerate to it.
The same happens driving north. Just north of the on-ramp from Riverside Drive, there, just before the Wesleyan Drive bridge, is a 55 mph sign. Get to the top of the bridge and you will immediately see on the other side of the bridge a 65 mph sign. But you may not see the policeman parked on the bridge over Riverside Drive waiting for you to see the 65 mph sign.
Luckily I have not gotten a ticket. But it is probably only because of my excessive hatred of what amounts to two obvious speed traps with no obvious purpose beyond collecting my money.
Of course there are also the political pet peeves. The media’s incessant need to conduct a poll then turn their poll into a news story is maddening, particularly when the polling is wrong. Just the other day a poll came out that showed Jason Carter would beat Nathan Deal if the election were held that day.
Media across Georgia ran with that sensational headline generated by a poll. The very same poll that showed this showed that both Jack Kingston and David Perdue were running behind Michelle Nunn. Another story came from that. The polling also showed Jack Kingston decisively beating David Perdue. Another story came from that.
Then the actual election happened and Perdue narrowly defeated Jack Kingston. What about those other stories based on the same poll? There were no clarifications, retractions, or corrections.
With the primary over, we can return to another pet peeve -- the two people in separate bath tubs in the Cialis commercials.
Erick Erickson is a Fox News contributor and radio talk show host in Atlanta.