Tag Archives: things that annoy me

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Words I hate that should never be used in any form of media…

I need to write this so that I can move on. If I had a therapist I’m sure they’d tell me this.

There are two words, well, three actually, but two phrases, that make my blood boil, my eyes bleed, my ears steam, and my hands beat furiously against whatever surface is nearby.

The first is a radio bugbear of mine. It’s a totally unnecessary, superfluous, tautologous, heap of annoying annoyingness. You know. It is horrible. It is completely redundant. You know. I’m listening to you talk, and if I know what you’re talking about there’s probably no reason to be talking. You know. From football players, to coaches, to chefs, to reporters, the “you know” rate, when you notice it, can be up to four or five a minute.

But that pales in comparison to my reality TV bugbear, the idea that as soon as you enter into a competition, with prize money, because you’re essentially a show pony, you are on a meaningful “journey”… the idea that you then must refer to your journey at every opportunity as a journey, while having the narrator talk about your journey, and the hosts asking you about your journey, is putting your audience through a journey. A journey of hackneyed, and cliched, writing of the highest order. Please stop. That is all. You know.

Five things that annoy me

In no particular order.

  1. Interjections in lectures that are “questions” that end up being statements, that end up being reiterations of the thing we’ve just been covering. Though I suspect my constant stream of stupid comments, puns and dad jokes are just as annoying.
  2. People who park in clearways. One day I will run into one of these cars to see who is at fault legally.
  3. Comment moderation and word verification on blogs. I am statistically less likely to comment on your blog if I don’t see my comment straight away (so that I know it has worked) and if I don’t have to jump through stupid steps to get it there.
  4. That the people who invented the Greek language didn’t just stick with one set of paradigms for nouns, one set for verbs and one set for adjectives.
  5. Flies. I hate flies. I killed about 20 in our kitchen this afternoon. Luckily we have a resident frog who will eat the flies I offer on the little table I’ve set up for him in a fishtank on my desk.

Coach, first class and business

You know what really annoys me. The theory that to be successful in the realm of business you need some sort of mentor, guru or coach. When did this happen?

I don’t care if your business coach or mentor is really successful – if they’re so good why aren’t you working for them?

Sure, learning from other people’s successes and failures is helpful. And wisdom comes from experience (including other people’s experience). Advice is great. But the idea that you need constant handholding and affirmation in order to realise your true potential is constantly frustrating. What happened to learning on the job and from your own experience – it seems that the approach these days is to run around collecting coaches and pithy advice before stepping out and doing something. It’s hardly entrepreneurial.

It’s especially frustrating when you run around telling everybody what your coach/mentor/guru/sage/seer etc told you and suggesting they apply it to their own endeavours in that field in a way that disparages everybody who does things differently or chooses to hold to an alternate philosophy.

That is all.

EDIT: In case anyone is wondering who this is directed at – it was vaguely work related. But I find this frustrating in every sphere.

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Open letter to people who make “urgent” requests

Dear “Urgent” requester,

I understand that you want me to do something urgently but the fact that you write “urgent” on an unsolicited email does not (unless you are my boss or you are responsible for a significant amount of my funding) – make your request urgent.

If you send it to me between 4.30pm and 5pm when I am watching the clock I will be likely to treat it with the contempt it deserves.

Perhaps if the job is so urgent it is your planning process that needs timely revision.

That is all.

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Anti-pastor

I’m a “PK”. For those not familiar with the jargon it means the child of a clergyman. I can’t bring myself to say “Pastors Kid” – because I hate the word “pastor” as a title. I don’t know why. It just grates on me. I hate it. I will, when questioned about my “PK” status insist that the P is for Preacher. 

Is my loathing of “Pastor” unreasonable? I’m sure there’s a Biblical argument for it, but it just sounds a little soft. Wussy. Which I guess in the scheme of things isn’t a bad thing – people in ministry are called to be servant hearted or shepherdly. 

I just don’t like it. 

That is all.

Emoticonally challenged

Back in 2006 I wrote about why I hate emoticons. Basically if you use them incessantly or if your online dialogue is peppered with LOLs and ROFLs then I’ll probably find online discourse with you really annoying.

Emoticons and LOLs are starting to appear in actual verbal conversation. People now indicate laughter by saying LOL LOL LOL. If each of those LOLs is indicative of a bout of real life laughter then basically you’re abbreviating your response to things and packing in added hilarity. People also now feel the need to articulate the expression on their face – by saying “sadface” where they’d traditionally :( in typed text. This is sad. Particularly in the light of research that shows face to face communication is about 58 percent non-verbal, 35 percent “vocal” (tone etc)  and only 7% verbal (the words you use). And it’s annoying. This is a bit ranty, and it’s really just an intro to a story I just read and thought I’d share…

We may never know the degree of sorrow felt by a young Novosibirsk woman over the traffic cop she struck and killed with her car while driving drunk. But a senior traffic safety official said the “cynicism” of the suspect is exemplified by the text message – complete with emoticon – she sent her boyfriend after killing the officer:

“Honey, I killed a cop. I’m sorry :( What should I do?”

Yeah, nice. Her emotions are so beautifully captured by a colon and a parenthesis. That, to pick up another piece of online lingo is a “sympathy fail”.

The boyfriend’s priceless PR advice:

Create a “scandal and don’t say or sign anything.”

That is all.

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Conversational ticks

I have a bad habit of paying too much attention to the annoying idiosyncrasies in people’s conversational patterns. Particularly the use of annoying catchphrases. Like “So I’m there going…”, “Can I just say…”, and “… and things like that”…

It gets to the point where hearing those people use those phrases is like nails on a chalkboard.

EDIT: I should point out that this post related more to my bad habit and the problems it causes than to things people say. I was being self reflective not trying to be judgmental.

Dear planters

I have mentioned my feelings on the current wave of church planting enthusiasm before… But in summary – I think church planting is a good and necessary thing – particularly in areas experiencing population growth. I also think attendance patterns at churches (particularly Presbyterian Churches) in Queensland demonstrate the need for culturally relevant (dare I say “missional”) churches…

But, I am constantly frustrated by church planters and would be church planters putting down the old ways and old guys as they scurry up the ministry ladder. So I was greatly encouraged to read this post by Tasmanian church planter Mikey Lynch on why he likes to hear what the old guys have to say. There are a few bits of his list that seem to damn the old guard with faint praise – but the sentiment is praiseworthy.

You can head over there to read my comment. It’s long. And I feel a little bit like the Apostle Paul when I lay down my “credentials” for feeling the way I do… reluctantly foolish.

Also – in order to maintain my fantastic search engine ranking for the phrase “Driscoll fanboys” I should mention that those are the particular people I’m targeting with this rant.

Driscoll made broad generalisations when he visited our shores that have been latched onto like a mantra by a generation of bullish, headstrong, and arrogant young men (much like myself). Who want to make a difference and perhaps are looking for a point of difference. I’m not talking about people engaged in actual church planting currently – but those in pews being fired up and looking to lay blame for the current state of staid conservatism that misses the cultural mark.

That is all.

Dear producers

Producers of news programming in particular – and those who force clips from “…’s got talent” down our throats in the specific.

I don’t watch these shows. I choose not to. I am sick of seeing contestants who needed the platform your show provided paraded before my eyes everywhere I look. They are not news. They are not a “reason to hope” in these gloomy times any more than a lottery winner. They are the products of a vociferous, voracious, voyeuristic viewership – a body I do not wish to belong to.

Leave me alone. Keep your singing cat ladies to yourselves and viewers who have a nominal penchant for these trivialities.

I do not want your singing spam, I do not want them Sam I am.

That is all.

Dear blogger

Please don’t include a big block of ads between your title and your content in your RSS feed. I won’t read it. I won’t scroll down. If you’re lucky I’ll hit the “j” key (in google reader) and skip you. If you do it all the time I’ll just unsubscribe.

I expect better from you – particularly if your blog is all about how to have a better blog.

That is all.

Dear emailer

Please don’t feel compelled to open your missive to me with a joke. Particularly a joke that is not funny. Just get to the point.

That is all.