Easily irritated or justified annoyance? You decide.

Last night, while I rode my exercise bike and concentrated on the tiny print of Henry James’ Portrait of a Lady (which is taking forever to read) I may have been a little snippy when I asked my husband to, “TURN DOWN THE VOLUME!” of the television.  He pointed out that I am easily irritated, which, hey, so sue me.  Perhaps it’s true.  I just want whoever is nearest the remote control to be responsible enough to monitor the volume, turning it down during the commercials and up during vital dialogue.  Is that too much to ask? 

Here’s the thing.  If everyone I live with would just do things my way (ie. The Right Way), I would not be so annoyed. 

For instance, here is the kind of thing I encounter.

Last night, 9:30ish.  I’m reclining in the old green chair, afghan covering my lap, channel surfing, eating fat-free popcorn.  I hear a crash.  I do not even wince.

Moments later, a 13-year old emerges with the remnants of a Mary Engelbreit mug and a half-baked story about its accidental smashing.  Whatever.  I scarcely look up, but tell the boy to get a broom and clean up the mess.  After all, if a busted artery were gushing, he’d be covered in blood already, right?

This morning, while passing through their room on the way to the laundry room, I notice the broom on their floor which irritates me.  Why can’t these children put things away?  Have I done this to them?  Have I taught them to disregard my need for order?  Did I neglect to teach them The Right Way?  I also note that someone has ripped open a microwave popcorn bag, licked it clean and discarded it in bits in a pile on the floor.  This, not surprisingly, irritates me and I make a mental note to rebuke the offender and make him clean up that mess.

A bit later, I’m in the kitchen putting away cooking spray on the top shelf and as I push it in, the bread crumbs container commits suicide, flinging itself onto the kitchen floor where it crumbs burst forth in a vast expanse.

The mug-crusher notices this and retrieves the broom.  I say in a dead voice, “Great, now get the dustpan.”  He disappears into his room, never to return.  I start yelling for the dishpan and the other 13-year old wanders out, claiming he can’t find it.  I say, irrationally, “I don’t care if you can’t find it!  BRING IT TO ME NOW!” 

We never did find the dustpan.  This irritates me greatly and causes me to mutter under my breath, stuff about putting things away and, well, things I ought not to say.  BUT HOW IRRITATING IS IT THAT MY DUSTPAN IS GONE? 

I fashioned a piece of cardboard into a makeshift dustpan and cleaned up the mess, but not before one of my boys stepped in the pile of crumbs while peering into the kitchen and probably drinking the last drop of milk and leaving an empty container on the shelf.

My husband thinks I could fill a whole blog up with all the things that irritate me, which is probably true.  (For instance, at a movie last week, a guy was talking into a lit up, walkie-talkie style cell phone during the movie.  If I hadn’t been concerned about him having a concealed weapon, I might have hollered, “HEY, BUDDY!  PUT AWAY YOUR PHONE, YOU THOUGHTLESS IDIOT!”  What is wrong with people?) 

I must note that my sensitivity to irritation is greatly enhanced one week out of every month and frankly, I find that irritating. 

21 thoughts on “Easily irritated or justified annoyance? You decide.

  1. You tell ’em sister! If even half the world did things the Right Way (my way!) what an amazing world this could be…

    The point is, I got your back on this! Though, it might be my week too…


  2. Why don’t people get that there’s a time and a place for cell phones? Why is it so hard to put it down? It’s like a portable remote…

    As for the crumbs, my little DustBuster was the best $40 of Christmas money I’ve ever spent. Dustpans NO MORE!


  3. My movie theater manager daughter takes great pleasure in asking people who talk on cell phones durin movies to be quiet or leave. It makes her day when some other customer quietly and anonymously informs her of a disturbance in the theater. She’s just weird like that 🙂 You don’t have to put up with loud people in the theater and you don’t have to confront them yourself. Tell an employee, because chances are, they’re just itching for a reason to kick someone out! 🙂


  4. Hehehee…and that one week a month my hubby KNOWS (has learned to do bodily harm) TO STAY AWAY, STAY VERY FAR AWAY!!! =)))The “soon to be teenagers” are still learning, but they will learn soon enough.


  5. I’m right there with you. Especially at this very moment.

    I’m trying to read a very funny blog and my 14 year old son has to harrass his sisters until they cry, my middle daughter wants to show me some dumb brain teasers, and the litle girls won’t.stop.whining. Not to mention my husband, who just tried to cancel my big fancy plans for my birthday, which involve a trip to Trader Joes and lunch out.

    Try me, buddy. Just, try me.


  6. Ha ha. That was funny Mel. I honestly don’t know how you do it. My husband commented on my increased irrability, blame it on my increased pregnancy hormones, but I nicely told him that he shouldn’t crease his newspaper five times because it would get my clean walls, cupboards, etc dirty. Opps :).


  7. Sounds entirely normal and reasonable to me. And there is only the Right Way to stack dishwashers, arrange cushions, etc of course. I hate to be the bearer of bad tidings, but mine have NEVER learnt. And they range from 29-17. And I still orbit the room when I discover sweet wrappers etc hidden under lamp bases, or down the side of beds.


  8. We share a brain, apparently. I am EXACTLY the same way. Hubba-hubba’s biggest complaint about me is how easily small things irritate me. Other than that, though, I’m perfect. As I’m sure you are as well.


  9. Nothing irritates me more than to have someone (husband) say in response to my irritability “Are you about to start?” AARRRGGGHHH. Even if that is the reason, I don’t want my feelings discounted like that.



  10. Never fear, you will find the dustpan. It’s probably in the laundry. Or under someone’s bed, where he left it after collecting those thousands of Lego bricks that hide in the carpet…you know, the ones you step on in the middle of the night on your way to the bathroom?

    I finally found my dustpan. It was under the Little People Main Street/farm/dollhouse village that the kids had spent all day setting up. When I snarled that I had been LOOKING for this, the little darlings got that blank look on their faces (you know the one!) and said, “Oh? *We* didn’t know that!”

    See? They not only forget what you tell them, THEY NEVER HEARD IT IN THE FIRST PLACE!

    I am SO feeling your pain.


  11. thank goodness I am not the only really persnickety person out there. I swear, no one cares about doing anything the right way. It is so irritating – probably as irritating as living with me is….


  12. I find it irritating that I either have irrational thoughts that week or irrationally painful cramps. Thankfully not both at the same time or else I would be doing time right now.


  13. You ever see the Everybody Loves Raymond episode where Ray buys Debra some Midol so she stops being “irritated” by everything. It is one of my favorite episodes.

    My husband has said I have gotten better over the years but that I still have a nerve in me that he fears for his life if he happens to hit said nerve. I feel sorry for the guy, usually after the week is over. While I have PMS I just want to be left alone. It could be worse though. My mother was known to pull knives on my dad. I have never got to that point!

    Seriously though, having PMS does not give me a reason to be mean. I try hard to be nice and not grumpy but hormones sometimes have a mind of thier own. I would trade female hormones for hubby’s any day. At lease then all I have to worry about is…well…you know.

    Mrs. Garcia


  14. Hi Mel!! I think you are right – and completely agree with you! If only people were a bit more considerate – things would be so much better. So many things irritate me – so when I’m annoyed – I just picture me heaving a bazooka on my shoulder and blasting the hell out of the offender. And stepping in crumbs??? Unpardonable.


  15. I’ve read all of the posts and you all understand so much! My problem is really my boyfriend. I love him and all but he’s so clingy and wants every single second of my time. It gets annoying cause when I’m trying to be online or watch a movie or do anything by myself he continueously talks to me and yacks away and it’s so hard to concentrate. Calling my name every other minute and it gets pure ANNOYING!


  16. I agree these things can be annoying, however i must tell you id be more worried about your ongoing stress level and what it does to your health, i to am one that overstresses on daily bs that doesnt need to be happening.
    Sounds like you need a break, either that or start doing a mandatory husband/kids cleanup for a solid two weeks, then act as the child and do the very same things they do to you, to help them understand just how annoying it really is.


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