This is not about my big irritations (of which there are very few — feral hogs and trash throwing trash out of their vehicles being two of them), but it is about some of the things that vex me, at least temporarily. You might say, "Larry, get over it," and I do. Still, these eight things, listed in no particular order, annoy me.
1. Slow drivers in the fast lane: Do they do it on purpose, or do they not know better? I'm talking about 60 mph in the left lane on the interstate. Frankly, if they are doing 70, it's hard to legitimately complain — but that's still, realistically, slow for the left lane. If they are doing it on purpose, they ought to be ashamed. If they don't know better, they should not be driving on interstate highways. It's dangerous.
2. Risqué television ads: Viagra and Cialis come to mind. They know what old folks (like me) watch, and that's where they advertise. The television ads have changed dramatically within the past year or two, and I don't think we've seen anything yet. How about the dating services and certain kinds of underwear?
3. Magazine subscription expiration dates: We like magazines and take several including Garden and Gun, Southern Living and The Week. We also sometimes give subscriptions for gifts. Shortly after subscribing, we start getting notices to renew, but there is never an indication as to when the present subscription expires. Recently, Janice went to a great deal of trouble and found out that the subscription Southern Living was trying to get her to renew didn't expire until 2018. This is a tricky lot. It almost falls into the category of "there ought to be a law."
4. How do you want your steak cooked?: "What is medium? It's pink in the middle. That's the way I want it." I seldom get it that way. My irritation? Why do they ask you how you want it if they are not going to cook it as requested? And, no, I do not send it back unless it is really rare. The really rare ones that are rarely returned usually come back really, really well-done. Do they do this on purpose?
5. Discouraging charitable giving: Janice has helped with Special Olympics and has been the neighborhood captain for March of Dimes and others. And we have given to many other charities, sometimes as "in memory of" gifts. Well, with some of these charities, once you give, and they have your name and telephone number, they are constantly calling to get you to give or help again. I got a call at 8 a.m. week before last. I believe they also sell your name and contact numbers to other charities.
6. Chocolate shakes not too thick and not too "chocolatey": The local Dairy Queen is great on this. So is Mike at Twila Faye's. As to most others, I usually get 'em just like everyone else gets 'em, despite my instructions, and that's whatever way they decide to turn 'em out (kinda like an auto assembly line). Solution, I buy most of my milkshakes at the Dairy Queen and Twila Faye's.
7. Reminding you of appointments: I understand the necessity of making appointments. I'm in a profession that requires it, but I do not telephone, send an email or initiate a robo call to remind you of your appointment. The robo call is something new, and I think it has about the same effect as robo calls in a political race. And that's not good. And, by the way, when you get there for the appointment, how often is the appointment met on time by the other side?
8. Ketchup and mayonnaise in a sleeve: Whoever invented these things ought to have to serve a little time in jail (perhaps two days) or work on the streets (perhaps a week). You can't get 'em open, and when you do and get part or all of it off your shirt, you don't have enough to taste. French fries? You better get about eight or 10 sleeves of ketchup. Good luck.
The name of the article pretty well says it all. It is life's "little" irritations, with emphasis on "little," and, surprisingly there are only eight. I know that you have some, too. What are they?
Larry Walker is a practicing attorney in Perry. He presently serves on the University System of Georgia Board of Regents. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.