Stuff that drives me crazy

2015-05-03 20:31

SO the other day, amid the shameful ­xenophobic violence that has reduced our country to skunk status, I came across a Facebook post of 10 things this person loves about South Africa. Stuff like sitting on a beach, sipping wine and watching the sunset, our lovely climate, Table Mountain, Nelson Mandela. “Bleugh, how Pollyanna of you,” I muttered darkly, before firmly clicking on the little “x” in the corner. To counter the saccharine I had just read, I succumbed to my dark side and bashed out a list of stuff that drives me crazy. If you agree, just press the “Like” button.


There’s absolutely nothing about winter that I like. Roaring fires are lovely, but they don’t make up for the fact that I’m always incorrectly dressed, the sun is constantly in my eyes, there’s more night time than day time, and that I’m, well, cold.

Political correctness

While it is necessary and right to consider the rights and feelings of others, and not just to say whatever comes into your head in case you hurt someone, you do that naturally if you are a decent human being. The problem with being politically correct all the time is that very often it stands in the way of truth, sincerity and humour.

Instruction manuals

I’m not sure what kind of English these are ­written in, but it’s no English that I understand. I usually give up in a huff, make my husband read it and then teach me how to use whatever appliance or gadget it applies to. My new ­washing machine stood unused for three days, until I told my son that if he wanted clean clothes, he would have to read the manual and then tell me what to do. The eye rolling and sighing ­performance that accompanied the instructions was spectacular.

Changing bed linen

This household chore often has me screaming in fury, especially when trying to wrestle a ­king-size duvet into its cover. I never seem to get it in the cover the right way and eventually have to spread the duvet out on the floor and crawl inside to smooth out all the bumps and folds, swearing in a most unladylike fashion all the while. Even more irritating is that when my husband does it, it takes a mere flick of his wrist, a little shake here and there, and a perfectly smooth duvet floats down onto our bed.

Creeping knickers and underwire bras

I would rather go commando than spend the entire time digging knickers out of … well … you know. As for those instruments of torture that pose as underwire bras, who ever thought that inserting a rigid piece of metal into a tight article of clothing which is worn over bones that are very close to the surface was a good idea? It must have been a man.

Ticking bedside clocks

I’ve been known to hurl an offending clock out the bedroom window.

People standing too close in a queue

Every time you move forward, the person behind you glues him or herself to your back, moving with you. What’s with that? No one’s going to steal your place, you’re not going to get to the till any faster, and if you breathe down my neck once more, I’m going to stomp on your foot. If someone does this to me, I stand sideways, put my hand on my hip, and point my very sharp elbow in his or her direction.

Empty loo-roll holders

You’re sitting there anyway — change the damn roll!

Greedy medical profession

Is it really necessary for doctors, especially specialists, to charge as much as they do? Is one Mercedes-Benz a year not enough? Way back when, people used to say they became doctors to “help people”. Not so much anymore. People become doctors to get rich at the expense of the sick.

Intellectual snobbery

What’s it to you if someone read 50 Shades of Grey or likes boy bands, or can’t miss the nightly soapie? It’s unbelievable how people who clearly feel they are intellectually superior to those around them will proclaim loudly to all who will hear how beneath them certain things are. ­Methinks, they doth protest too much. Someone even told me once that if a woman wants to appear intellectual, she shouldn’t wear makeup. Honestly, get over yourself.

Raisins in my cereal

You’re happily crunching away when suddenly your teeth sink into something soft; it’s enough to make me gag, like biting into a big, soft tick.

Dawdling pedestrians

When I cross the road, I scuttle across quickly, more out of being afraid of being mowed down by a taxi that has run the red light, but also because I know how irritating it is to wait while a pedestrian dawdles across the road. Sometimes it feels as if they are daring you to run them over. They’d better watch out — one day I just might.

Grumpy or what?

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