Thursday, May 06, 2010

Pet Peeves, Rants, and Raves. Actually, No Raves.

Bluffton Today column
May 5, 2010

Way back in the olden days, when I took my driving test, I ran over all of the cones during my parallel parking maneuver. But, the instructor was still nice enough to pass me. And this was before I “developed,” so he must have seen a spark of something special in my ability.*

However, since then I have avoided parallel parking (and driving instructors) at all costs. Further, if I don’t have to move the car in reverse, we are all better off. In fact, the day before I moved my boat to dry storage was the day that I tried to back up the truck, the trailer, and the boat and wrapped all of the above around a palm tree.

As such, I will never ever understand why folks will voluntarily back their car into a parking space. I can barely back out of my driveway and into my cul de sac without incident. Backing up on purpose? I don’t get it. Do you walk backwards just for the heck of it? No, I didn’t think so.

While we’re still behind the wheel, let’s address the folks who speed up, race past me, and then end up stopped adjacent to me at the next traffic light. I call this the “hurry up and wait” maneuver. And, I get great joy from giving said drivers the side-eye, a quick tip of the hat, and perhaps an over-exaggerated chortle.

Every time I experience a “hurry up and wait” I am reminded of an outing with my Dad many moons ago. I was driving and apparently tailgating the driver in front of me. My father told me to slow down. But, being the smart-aleck teen that I was, I argued, “but the speed limit is 45!”

And, my father, in all his wisdom said (with deadpan delivery), “but the car in front of you is only going 35, Cour.” Good point Dad, good point.

While I’m at it, might I also mention that people who use the word “irregardless” need to pull out the ol’ dictionary and realize that irregardless is not a word. I believe the word you are searching for is “regardless,” which means, in spite of everything. I’m pretty sure that is what you are trying to say anyway, right? In a chuckle-worthy twist, the dictionary actually has an entry for “irregardless,” that basically says, this isn’t a word. Classic.

Further, if you tend to start a thought with, “we as humans …” you may want to re-think it. If you are talking to another someone, chances are they are also human, so that clarification is probably unnecessary. I’m just saying …

Now, if we are chatting, and you present a number of points and then tell me to “do the math,” I expect some actual numbers to be in the mix. And, if I am telling you a story with stunning statistics for example, I received 1,000 pieces of fan mail last week (an obvious exaggeration, but bear with me)! And you feel the need to tell me that you, in fact, received 2,000 pieces of fan mail last week, that makes you a “one-upper.” In essence you are telling me that everything I do, you can do better. Of course you can. I totally believe you.

Since I am on a roll, I may as well cross the line and tell you that if you truly believe in God and everything he has created, don’t you think you are selling him short when you call him ”awesome” in your Facebook status? I mean, if I was God, and had the omnipotent power that the Bible suggests, I’d feel a little short-changed by “awesome.” (And, if I was God, would I really have time for Facebook?)

And last, but not least, my rant would incomplete if I didn’t thank the Tea Partiers for sending me a copy of the United States Constitution with a note regarding the First Amendment. Many thanks, but that gift was unnecessary. I am quite familiar with my right to free speech and press, as evidenced by the fact that I wrote (and you just read), 704 words of Courtney and no one stopped me. God bless America!

What are your pet peeves? Send them to Courtney Hampson at

*Note this sentence read - "And this was before my boobs came in, so he must have seen a spark of something special in my ability." - before I was advised to change it. :-)

1 comment:

Mad Hatter said...

I think the people who backup to park are in a hurry to leave and the people who just pull in are in a hurry to just get there. I am one of the "just get there" folks. haha! :o)