mini-rants: #1-4

We all have our pet peeves, and because I like to rant, here are four of mine!

1. Ice tray etiquette (or lack thereof)

When I was a kid, there was a certain protocol that needed to be followed when preparing an icy beverage: If you take some ice, you need to fill the mold back up with water so you don’t screw over the next person. No one likes drinking warm soda. You obviously agree with that, otherwise you wouldn’t have used the ice in the first place and there wouldn’t be a problem!

Don't be like this frog!

Don’t be like this frog!

On the difficulty spectrum, filling an ice cube tray with water is about as easy a task you can fulfill without having to sit down first. It takes less than five seconds and doesn’t involve any heavy lifting, mental math, or feats of agility. It’s not like you have to babysit the water to make sure it forms ice crystals properly; it’s a fairly automatic process. Still, it seems like everyone I’ve ever shared a fridge with has had problems with this. Are they afraid of filling it too full? Spilling precious water during the two-step journey back to the freezer?

I love it when they leave it by the kitchen sink because ‘it needs to be washed’, but only sometime in the future and by someone other than themselves. Please. It was filled with WATER, kept at temperatures BELOW FREEZING- are you really going to justify wasting soap on that? If it’s got something green and fuzzy evolving in it, by all means, suds it up-but then fill it up.

Bottom line, if you use ice, make some more. It’s just common courtesy.

2. Peer Pressure at the Hand Dryer

I find myself in this situation a lot. It always starts with me entering a public restroom alone, and by the time I finish my business, there’s a line of women out the door. That’s fine. What bothers me is that by the time I’ve washed my hands and have started waving my hands under the lone dryer in the hopes that the lukewarm puff of air will cause the moisture on my hands to evaporate, the woman after me- who pees freakishly fast and washes her hands at the speed of light- is tapping her toes, holding out her manicure like Edward Scissorhands, trailing water on the grimy tile floor.

Some people might be ok going out into the world with still-dripping hands, but I prefer  mine to be as dry as the outside of a cactus. Just one of my neuroses, I guess. But I also hate ‘putting people out’, and usually end up walking out way before my hands have dried properly, wiping them on the lap of my jeans. It’s not the other women’s fault but that of circumstance, but couldn’t they, I don’t know, pretend to fix their hair or something until I’m done? It’s what I do when the situation is reversed!

One of the rare times I think I would have been better off as a man.

One of the rare times I think I would have been better off as a man.

3. ridiculous password requirements

Recently I was making an account online. I won’t name any names, but let’s just say it was for a website whose services I had been bullied (cyber or otherwise) into using.

It had taken 30 minutes, but finally I had managed to cobble a username from a combination of letters, numbers, and underscores that a) I could live with and b) hadn’t already been taken by someone else. Seriously, I must be the most unoriginal person on the planet, because it seems like my top fifty UN ideas are already ‘in use.’ Usually by an account that’s been inactive since the Myspace era.

I thought I was home free. The rest of the form was filled out, all I had to do was pick a password. Quickly I typed my go-to in (it was an account I didn’t really want, after all), retyped it, hit submit, and-

“ERROR: You’re password needs to be at least 9 characters long, contain 1 capitalized character, 2 non-sequential numbers, and one symbol. The first 3 characters cannot be the same. One of these requirements has not been met.”

What the truck? Who do they think I am that I need this much security? George Bush? Next they’ll be asking for a blood sacrifice every time I log on. and then they make you change you’re password every 3-6 months. Seriously. I have so many passwords  that I can’t remember which one goes to which account. Whenever I have to log in, I just keep trying them until one works, or until my account gets frozen, at which point the problem is solved.

One the plus side, I can verify that my Neopets account is now totally unhackable- Even by me!

4. Liesurely changing lanes

By ‘changing lanes’ I mean when I’m in a car that someone else is driving. and a right turn is coming up. and they stay in the left-most lane until the last. possible. moment.

I’m pretty sure the first three rants in this post are universal peeves, but I totally understand if I’m the only person in the world who is neurotic enough for this one. Personally, if I know a turn is coming up, I get in that lane as soon as possible. It’s just easier that way.

But other people like to take their time. They’re not worried about missing their turn or the possibility that some jerk in a pick-up truck might not let them in. I know that I’m not driving and shouldn’t care what other people do behind the wheel, as long as I’m not paying the insurance and am wearing a seat belt. But every time it happens, I feel like I’m about to have an aneurysm.

and I try really, really hard not to be a back-seat driver. But it always feels like a competition with the clock. How long can I last without saying, “Umm, we’re turning right up here”?

I mean, doesn’t it make sense to merge into the lane as soon as it opens up? Do you get there faster by waiting? Would it kill you to save me a headache and just move the fuck over?

I have no idea who this kid is.

I have no idea who this kid is.

So there you have it! installment #1 of my rants. I’m a fairly disagreeable person, so more are sure to come, but in the meantime, what gets under your skin the most? Do you share my rants, or am I just an awful human being? Leave me a comment and let me know!

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About Haley Dziuk

Haley Dziuk writes both fiction and narrative nonfiction. Her stories and essays have appeared in "The Hoot Review" and "Nail Polish Stories." She works as a librarian for the Phoenix Public Library. When she's not writing or patrolling the stacks, she likes to sing along to her guitar, and go on mini adventures with her boyfriend.
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