Tag Archives: Nineteen Eighty-Four

Grumpy Old Man (Items 11 – 15)…

All this chat about Room 101 is making me want to read Nineteen Eighty-Four again, but while I ponder that, here are a few more annoyances…

  • Facebook (in general), but specifically those people who have an insatiable hunger to post pictures of food that they are about to consume. Trust me; Gordon Ramsay’s job is safe, because most of those plates look about as appetising as a bucket of wallpaper paste. And while the description of roast chicken, my fave, mmm, is actually quite helpful – because until I read that I wasn’t sure if that overcooked mess was animal, vegetable, or mineral – there is less of a requirement for a caption of bday cake. All those candles and that crudely iced inscription kind of tipped me off there.
  • While I’m thinking about Facebook: I’d like to get rid of those (usually female) users who update their status with inane drivel like: I’m so sad, or boo hoo, or that old keyboard classic of 😦 , and then wait until a raft of followers ask them what’s wrong, before actually divulging what their issue is. It’s either a) my boyfriend dumped me, b) I can’t get in to my skinny jeans, or c) heavy periods. Guys don’t do that: they just post shit about cars, getting wasted, and how many chicks they scored with on the weekend. Classy.
  • Able-bodied, physically-capable people, who get in an elevator to go up or down one floor, especially when they’re not carrying anything heavy. And I don’t mean those people who jump in because they just happen to be passing when the elevator doors open. No. I’m talking about the ones who have pressed the button and have stood there and waited for it. Just use the stairs! I know you know where they are, because you passed them to get to the lift in the first place.
  • Teenagers who only recognise songs as being performed by the flavour-of-the-month group or artist currently in the charts. You just know their heads would explode (which may not be a bad idea) if you told them that One Way or Another was actually not an original One Direction song, or that Word Up charted almost thirty years before Little Mix got their poptastic hands on it. Whether or not they are good cover versions is irrelevant, but at least have the courtesy to acknowledge a song’s roots and not pretend otherwise.
  • Cyclists who assume they can double as road users and pedestrians, using whichever rules please them at the time, depending on traffic conditions/weather/how they are feeling.

Come on – I’m not the only one…

…am I?

Grumpy Old Man (Items 6 – 10)…

So here are a few more gripes – some more obscure than others – that we can gladly throw into Room 101. This is probably not what Orwell had in mind when he penned Nineteen Eighty-Four, but anyway…

  •  Men who go to the centre of the silver urinal trough when nobody else is in there. If the toilet is empty, just take a corner like any normal person!
  • Keeping with toilets: men who don’t hold their business at the urinals, and instead, either stand there with their hands on their hips or – in one instance – text someone! What’s up with that? I don’t care if you can control your aim remotely. It’s weird and it puts me off my stream, so just do me a solid and hold yours next time, ok? Left hand or right, it makes no difference to me. Just do it.
  • Women who answer with: “you don’t ask a lady that”, when you ask them how old they are; closely followed by women who respond with: “how old do you think I am?” to the same question. Either tell me the truth or lie. Just give me a number. I’m sure that telling me your age will not contravene any national security regulations, so please don’t make this whole song and dance about it. By the way, however old you are, you look older. Happy?
  • People who get tattoos or strange piercings on their face and then get annoyed when you point/stare/laugh at them. It’s human nature. Society – quite rightly – says we shouldn’t gawp at disabled people, but there’s certainly no social rule about looking at you. If you insist on the ink and/or the jewellery and want to pass it off as ‘body art’, so be it, but this is the price you pay.
  • Google Maps. Google is good for a lot of things, and I – like many people – use it every day, but the map application was obviously programmed by a) someone with a sadistic sense of humour, or b) a drunk monkey. If I was tasked to find my way to mainland China and had to choose between Google Maps and a blind homing pigeon, I’d take the bird every time.

I’d like to say that was the end of my list, but you know, what’s life without a few (hundred) moans?

Grumpy Old Man (Items 1 – 5)…

Yesterday, someone asked me what – if anything – I would consign to Room 101. You know, stuff that annoys me; irks me. Things that make me want to reach for the nearest blunt object. For the few of you out there who are not familiar with the reference, read George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four. It’s one of the best novels you can get your hands on.

Anyway, I drew up a list which I was going to post in its entirety, but it turned out to be a lot longer than I thought it would. So here, in no particular order, is the first clutch of those things that currently… make me want to count to ten.

  • People who talk on their mobiles/cells at upwards of 127 decibels. You’re on the phone: you really don’t need to shout! If you want to do so please wait until I have vacated the area and am suitably out of earshot.
  • And still on phones: people who find it imperative to tell the other person the minutiae of their every move: “I’m on the bus; yeah, I’m just passing the corner store now. Wait a minute, we’re stopped at the lights. I’ll just be a minute. Oh! I can see you now. Look, I’m waving. Can you see me? Yeah, I’m wearing my red coat. Thanks, I decided to treat myself. You’re right, I do deserve it. Ok, I’m just getting off now. Right, I’m hanging up…”
  • People (usually teenagers) who play music on their mobiles without headphones (usually on a bus), with the express intention of making everyone else listen to it. Why do they do this? The quality is rarely crystal and it’s always an artist or band that makes you want to jam the phone down the user’s throat just to see if you can still hear it from the depths of their stomach.
  • Adults who look to Harry Potter and/or Twilight for points of reference, disregarding the fact that these books/movies are aimed squarely at people no more than half their age. Minus one point for those who take pride in being able to quote these characters, and minus another point for the ones who attend fancy dress parties as either Dumbledore or Edward Cullen.
  • Women who haven’t read a book since The Hungry Caterpillar at school, yet managed to get through all three volumes of Fifty Shades, which now serves as their benchmark for what is good or bad in the world of literature. No, reading one titillating trilogy does not allow you to have an opinion on anything else – it barely categorises you as a reader. You’re just a horny housewife who has read three shit books, that’s all.

…more to follow, once I calm down…