When I was in 9th grade, I took a speech class, and I really didn’t enjoy it. It wasn’t that the teacher was bad, it’s just that I have really bad stage fright, and being graded on speaking in front of people was one of my biggest nightmares. One of the topics we had to speak about was our biggest pet peeve.
As the wise, mature, 9th grader that I was, I had no idea if I even had a pet peeve, let alone one that was a higher priority than the others. I ended up giving my speech on being called short, and even that was a stretch. I was short, and so I could understand why someone might call me that.
Recently, I’ve had a shorter fuse than normal. Little things that didn’t bother me now drive me crazy. I know that there’s a lot going on recently, so it doesn’t really surprise me. What does surprise me is that I’m starting to notice little things that have become pet peeves over the past few years. Maybe it’s because I’m living in the adult world and interacting with more people. Or maybe it’s because of what I’m dealing with. Whatever it is, I now understand what people mean by pet peeve.
It’s that thing that makes your skin crawl and your stomach clench. It’s that thing that you just want to grab the person and shout “what were you thinking?”
Or maybe that’s just me.
Here’s a few of my recent pet peeves:
1. Drivers on the highway who drive under the limit but stay in the left lane. If people are passing you on the right, then you are in the wrong lane! If you’re not passing someone, then get out of the left lane. There is no reason for you to stay in the left lane when you’re the only car on the highway.
2. People who go back on their word. Sure, there’s the odd moment when you forget something. But if you schedule something, especially if it’s something dealing with your business, then don’t forget! I work night shift. If you say you’re going to be coming at 11am to fix an appliance, then understand that I’m staying up WAY past my bedtime so you can come. Please don’t show up at 1:30 that afternoon. And definitely don’t just not show up at all.
As a nurse, here’s my biggest one.
3. People who don’t take care of themselves. You’ve only got one body. Take care of it. Treating it like a rental isn’t going to benefit you in the long run. If your doctor tells you to reduce sugar or to exercise or if the dentist tells you to brush your teeth, then they probably have a reason to do so. And if you don’t take care of yourself, if you ignore everything the doctor says, then accept the consequences, don’t blame someone else.
I’m not just writing this to vent. As I’m dealing with my own little pet peeves, I’ve been working on my Blue WIP, and I’m noticing some of the same things in my main character. I hadn’t realized it before, but she hates people who pretend they’re someone else. It was already in there, but now that I understand how pet peeves can get under a person’s skin, it is much easier to write.
And, if I do say so myself, much more fun to write. I like creating characters who lose control every once in a while.
How about the rest of you? Any pet peeves you want to share? Need to vent?