Old and Curmudgeonly

I'm feeling old and curmudgeonly today. I'm not old, and I'm not typically very curmudgeonly. However, there are days (like today) when I just want to sit back in my creaky rocking chair with all of the other old curmudgeons of the world, throw my hands up in disgust, and demand, "Whatever is this world coming to?!"

So, I'm sure I'll offend people here. But for today, I'm listing my Old-and-Curmudgeonly gripes. These are gripes that I have when I'm feeling old and curmudgeonly. When I'm feeling young and expansive, I typically don't give them a second thought.

Today's Curmudgeonly Gripes

1. Ambulances and fire trucks whose sirens nearly pierce my eardrum. I think Asheville must have the loudest sirens of anywhere I've ever been. When I'm outside and an ambulance or fire truck comes by, I have to sit on the ground, bury my head between my knees, and jam my fingers into my ears. Even then, I end up with ear pain for the next few hours. Grr. I cannot stand unnecessarily loud sirens. Even when I'm not feeling curmudgeonly.

2. People with sixteen earrings (nose rings? eyebrow rings? cheek rings? lip rings? tongue rings?), all gethered together above the neck and between the ears. (Perhaps I am secretly jealous. I had my ears pierced for a couple of years as a teenager but was allergic to earrings so I had to let the piercings close up.)

3. When a deadline for a huge project changes, but no one informs the tech writer (me) until after said tech writer has put other projects on hold and busted her butt to meet the deadline, only to get a little e-mail that says something like, "Oh, sorry ... that's not due until next June. We changed the deadline last week."

4. Trustafarians--Asheville is crawling with them. You "street people" have better teeth, more expensive educations, cooler clothes (however dirty), and fancier credit cards than I do. So quit asking me for a dollar!

5. Pianists who refer to Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata as "easy." First of all, that slow famous part is only one movement of Moonlight Sonata. And it's not as easy as it looks. Just because you can hit the right notes, doesn't mean you can play it.

6. People who say Mozart's music is boring. You may not like Mozart's music, but it's certainly not boring. If you think it's boring, then it's because you don't understand it (I don't totally understand it, either, of course ... but I understand enough to know it's not boring!).

7. People who claim to be open-minded and accepting, but prove themselves close-minded and utterly dismissive when it comes to dealing with Christians. (I have been one of those people, more often than I like to admit).

8. Blue-eyed, fair-skinned blondes who wear their thin, stringy hair in dreadlocks. It looks silly on you. Go wash your hair. (Perhaps I am secretly jealous. I am a blue-eyed, fair-skinned blonde with thin, stringy hair. Maybe I have a secret reggae-flavored fantasies. Oh well. No dreads for me.)

9. Skimpily dressed, multi-tattooed teenage girls groping each other in overtly sexual ways as they stand in line in front of me at the coffee shop. (I'm really, really not a prude. I am 100% in favor of groping one's sexual partner. I just don't want to watch you do it while I'm waiting to order my lunch. Where are your parents, anyway?)

10. People who tag every freaking e-mail they send with one of those "High Importance" exclamation-point icons.

11. Butt cracks. Why is it now cool to have your butt crack showing? Whatever happened to the olden days, when you didn't even want your bra strap to show? Oh me, oh my. (Again, I don't think I'm being a prude. Butt cracks are wonderful things. We'd be pretty miserable without them. I just don't want to see yours. Particularly if I'm waiting in line to buy my lunch.)

OK. I'm finished griping. As I said, I'm not always this curmudgeonly. I'll be less curmudgeonly tomorrow. I promise.

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