Friday, December 19, 2008

I HATE! People Who Cover Their Ears in the Subway

Ok - I know I tend to post a lot about the subway and all the annoying things subway riders do, but I have one more subway-related post that I just have to go ahead with.

Have you ever noticed those fucking annoying people who just must cover their ears while they're in the subway and a train goes by? Well, I have, and in case you haven't picked up on it yet, I hate these people!

Look: I'll make this simple. Anyone who knows anything knows that the New York City subway system is loud. That's just a fact. The trains are loud. The trains are old (mostly). The tracks are old. The tunnels are old. And the whole thing is underground (read: enclosed) where sound continually riquochets off the perpetually encroaching tunnel walls. If this isn't a recipe for a ruckus, I don't know what is.

What I'm trying to say here is that if you can't handle the noise, don't take the train... or get some f-ing earplugs. There is no reason to subject the rest of us to how stupid you look when you hold your hands over your ears like a petulant child throwing a tantrum when his mother refuses to buy him ice cream. And, yes, for all of you out there who feel the absolute need to cover your ears when a train passes by, you really DO look stupid. All it is is a little noise - grow a pair! Most of us adults can handle it.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

I HATE! Patchouli

There is no scent that I abhor more than the smell of patchouli. Not the odor of rotting garbage. Not the stench emitted by the NYC sewage system. Not even the repugnant aroma of a partially-mummified dead body (not that I would know first-hand what that might smell like). You know, I can't really pinpoint why it is exactly that I hate the smell of patchouli so much. I can say, with some certainty, that I know precisely when I decided that I simply could not tolerate the scent. I had a very close friend in my childhood with whom I spent a lot time - this included accompanying her on family vacations, many of which were spent at her grandmother's beach house. The grandmother in question always smelled strongly of patchouli, as did her house, her car, and pretty much anything that came within 5 feet of her at any point. It was then that I realized that patchouli and I could never have a lasting relationship.

It was later in life that I discovered that patchouli was often a favorite scent among the hippie crowd. And anyone who knows me, knows that hippies generally aren't my favorite group of people - it might be the unmaintained and dirty hair, it might be the lack of personal hygiene, it might be the fucking tie-dye, it might be the crusty Birkenstocks... who knows really? And come to think of it, the childhood friend's grandmother was a bit of a hippie - she wore her completely gray hair long and wavy and her wardrobe consisted mostly of multi-colored, floor-length skirts. An ex-boyfriend once told me that his sister, when going through her hippie phase (at Oberlin), wore patchouli, but ditched the fragrance (if you can even call it that) once she left her days of bare feet and peace signs behind her. My point here is that, in my mind, there is a direct correlation between the hippie set and patchouli, only furthering patchouli's bad reputation and cementing it's scent as putrid and vomit-inducing. Do you need any more evidence?

Don't think for a second that I'm exaggerating here. (I would NEVER do that!) How can I explain just how deeply my hatred for patchouli runs? Here's a good story: I once interned at a magazine where I always got free stuff. I went home every day with tons of make-up and bath and beauty products that were sent to the magazine by PR reps hoping to score an editorial mention. I hoarded this stuff and always managed to get the best and most swag. One day I went home with a bunch of bath products - lotions, body washes, soaps. Eager to try everything out, I used the body wash in the shower the next morning, right before I got on the train to go to Philadelphia. God knows how I managed to miss the fact that the whole lot was patchouli-scented. Obviously, I idiotically neglected to read the labels. What's worse, I didn't pick up on the scent while I was generously lathering up my body in the shower that morning. After a mad-dash to the train, I got comfy in my seat and prepared for the ride. It was then that the scent of patchouli engulfed me. I literally started to choke and cough - the odor was suffocating. I was scratching everywhere and leaving big red splotches all over my chest and arms. After the most uncomfortable of train rides, I had to race home and shower and even then, I was convinced I still hadn't completely shaken the scent. Talk about traumatizing experiences.

Anyway, point is patchouli smells fucking disgusting. I can't stand the smell - it literally causes an allergic reaction. Hippies wear it because the smell is overwhelmingly strong and can be used to disguise body odor and filth that has gone unchecked for weeks. Enough said.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

I HATE! Selfishness - Part Deux

Again with this?
Big Three auto CEOs flew private jets to ask for taxpayer money
By Josh Levs CNN
(CNN) -- Some lawmakers lashed out at the CEOs of the Big Three auto companies Wednesday for flying private jets to Washington to request taxpayer bailout money.

Chrysler CEO Robert Nardelli, left, and Ford CEO Alan Mulally testify on Capitol Hill on Wednesday.

"There is a delicious irony in seeing private luxury jets flying into Washington, D.C., and people coming off of them with tin cups in their hand, saying that they're going to be trimming down and streamlining their businesses," Rep. Gary Ackerman, D-New York, told the chief executive officers of Ford, Chrysler and General Motors at a hearing of the House Financial Services Committee.

"It's almost like seeing a guy show up at the soup kitchen in high hat and tuxedo. It kind of makes you a little bit suspicious."
He added, "couldn't you all have downgraded to first class or jet-pooled or something to get here? It would have at least sent a message that you do get it."

The executives -- Alan Mulally of Ford, Robert Nardelli of Chrysler and Richard Wagoner of GM -- were seeking support for a $25 billion loan package. Later Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid reversed plans to hold a test vote on the measure.

An aide told CNN that Reid decided to cancel the test vote when it became clear the measure would fall well short of the 60 votes needed. Reid did, however, make a procedural move that could allow a vote on a compromise, which several senators from auto-producing states were feverishly trying to craft.

At Wednesday's hearing, Rep. Brad Sherman, D-California, pressed the private-jet issue, asking the three CEOs to "raise their hand if they flew here commercial."
"Let the record show, no hands went up," Sherman said. "Second, I'm going to ask you to raise your hand if you are planning to sell your jet in place now and fly back commercial. Let the record show, no hands went up."
The executives did not specifically respond to those remarks. In their testimony, they said they are streamlining business operations in general.

When contacted by CNN, the three auto companies defended the CEOs' travel as standard procedure.

Like many other major corporations, all three have policies requiring their CEOs to travel in private jets for safety reasons.

"Making a big to-do about this when issues vital to the jobs of millions of Americans are being discussed in Washington is diverting attention away from a critical debate that will determine the future health of the auto industry and the American economy," GM spokesman Tom Wilkinson said in a statement.

Chrysler spokeswoman Lori McTavish said in a statement, "while always being mindful of company costs, all business travel requires the highest standard of safety for all employees."

Ford spokeswoman Kelli Felker pointed to the company's travel policy and did not provide a statement elaborating.
But those statements did little to mollify the critics.

"If it is simply the company's money at stake, then only the shareholders can be upset or feel as it might be excessive," said Thomas Schatz, president of the watchdog group Citizens Against Government Waste.

But in this case, he said, "it's outrageous."

"They're coming to Washington to beg the taxpayers to help them. It's unseemly to be running around on a $20,000 flight versus a $500 round trip," Schatz added.

The companies did not disclose how much the flights cost.

Analysts contacted by CNN noted that the prices vary with the size of the plane and the crew, and whether the aircraft is leased or owned by the company.

Analyst Richard Aboulafia of the Teal Group said that $20,000 is a legitimate ballpark figure for a round trip corporate jet flight between Detroit, Michigan, and Washington.

When asked whether they plan to change their travel policies as part of the restructuring needed to shore up their finances, none of the companies answered directly. But they said they have cut back on travel in general as revenues have fallen.
What on earth causes people to be so GD idiotic? Let's break this down - the CEOs of the three biggest automobile manufacturing companies come to Washington DC to ask (well, beg is more like it) for a $25 billion bailout. Without this money they say, their companies, as well as the city of Detroit as a whole, will inevitably collapse. This $25 billion they're asking for is money that has been collected by taxes. Money collected from taxes is money taken from taxpayers. And how do these CEOs see is fit to travel to Washington DC to ask for this taxpayer money? THEY EACH FLY TO THE CAPITOL ON THEIR OWN PRIVATE JET. Yes, I'm serious.

How idiotic do you have to be? It's pretty darn obvious that flying a private jet to Washington to lobby Congress to give the companies that you oversee necessary funding is RETARDED. These three CEOs are claiming that they are trying to 'streamline' their businesses to cut back on unnecessary spending and attempt to save their ailing companies. And then, they fly to Washington on private jets. Each of them on an individual jet. In no way can this be considered streamlining. In fact, I am going to go out on a limb here and say that when these CEOs say 'streamline' they really mean 'cut jobs while keeping themselves situated in the manner they are presently accustomed'.

The Chrysler spokesman commented on this egregious display of selfishness by saying that 'all business travel requires the highest standard of safety for all employees'. Does that mean that all Chrysler employees fly by private jet? I don't think so. Are we to assume that flying commercial is a imminent danger to the life of the Chrysler CEO? According to the company's spokesman, it seems so. And if that's the case, then flying commercial would be just as dangerous for any and all of the other Chrysler employees - so, by that reasoning, every Chrysler employee from factory workers all the way up to the CEOs should be flying on private jets.

I will say that I genuinely do appreciate Rep. Brad Sherman for taking this issue up the CEOs themselves during their Senate hearing. And when asked whether they would abandon their private jets and fly commercial back to Detroit, none of the CEOs even seemed to acknowledge this idea as a good or wise one. This is why our country's economy is slowly, but surely, going down the shitter - pure, unbridled selfishness.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I HATE! Improper Yoga Etiquette

I have all but given up exercise, which is undeniably sad and pathetic, but the truth is that I absolutely hate the gym - the essence of things like the Stair-master (climbing and climbing, but not getting anywhere), the elliptical machine (I cannot, for the life of me, get my legs to move on one of those things without instantaneously feeling them turn into jelly), and free weights (only for men with no necks) is lost on me. Don’t get me wrong: I am not one of those girls who can ‘eat whatever I want without exercising and never gain a pound’. It’s quite the opposite actually; what I eat goes right to my belly - the effect at it’s worst is similar to a nice fluffy doughnut wrapped snugly around my stomach - so I really do need to work at it if I want to be able to see my feet from above.

So it’s come to this: the only exercise I will willingly participate in is yoga and (ideally) / or soccer. I have already discussed both of these activities on this blog (specifically referring to instances during each where I’ve had the unfortunate experience of being kicked in the face), I know, but today I am going to address some other disturbing trends I’ve noticed during classes of the former.

I actually have lots of beef with the yoga studio where I take classes, but then again, it’s also free (well, actually, the proper term is ‘donation-based’, something the instructors remind us ever-so-robotically at the end of each and every class), so I can’t really do too much complaining. I tend not to want to bite the hand that feeds me, so I’ll generally just (try to) stick to bitching about the other attendees.

5. Dudes in yoga: Just. Gross. I’m really sorry. I don’t mean to be gender-biased here, but there is just something about seeing guys do yoga that really rubs me the wrong way. This applies to all guys - straight guys, gay guys, fat guys, skinny guys, beefed-up guys, pale guys, tan guys, short guys, tall guys. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but it’s just kind of gross. It might be the general visual of hairy toes and hairy backs and sweat all rolled up into one. Male yoga instructors fall into this category as well. (And yes, I’m totally straight.)

4. Showing off: If you’re really flexible, that’s awesome. If you’re fantastic at yoga, congrats. If you can stand on your head without wobbling for a full minute, you deserve a medal, honestly, but there is a place and time for showing off your skills. And, at the risk of sounding bitter, a (glorified) beginner’s yoga class is not the time to showcase your mastery. The classes that I attend ALWAYS have some ass hat trying to show the whole crowd how flexible she is or how all of his ribs stick out when he does a bridge. I am at yoga class to get my own blubbery ass into shape - as are more of the people who attend - and it doesn’t make anyone feel calm or relaxed when we have some chick in spandex booty shorts and a sports bra holding a one-footed bind for 5 minutes without breaking a sweat. The thing is, you can always determine which people are simply practiced and which people are making it a point to show people how practiced they are. It’s all in the mat placement. I, for one, not being super-confident in my yoga abilities, always race to the very back row, but those who live to make everyone else feel bad about themselves position him or herself in the very front row, right next to the instructor. It’s more than obvious.

3. Unequal instruction: Now this has only happened to me once, but when I noticed it, I was so horrified, that I have never forgotten it. The scene was just any other yoga class - nothing out of the ordinary. This particular studio trains a lot of instructors - I almost always have someone different for each class and repeats in instructors have been rare in my experience. This particular instructor, let’s call her Bambi for anonymity’s sake, was a petite woman, probably about my age (23 or 24). She was pretty scantily clad, which, as you’ve probably gathered from #4 above, I didn’t appreciate, especially because the instructors don’t actually do any of the poses, completely negating the need for Bambi’s extremely ‘unrestrictive’ attire. But that is all beside the point. Getting back on track - often instructors will come around to the students and adjust them so that their bodies are in the poses correctly - basically just correcting whoever hasn’t got it down right. Bambi came around, in the same manner as all of her colleagues, but, low and behold, she only seemed interested in attending to (and touching) the gentlemen in the class. Thinking that maybe I was imagining this, I watched her throughout the entire class and, in fact, she NEVER even went near one of the females in the class. Ummmm, obvious much? And not only was it obvious, but it was shameless too. Did this girl, not unfortunate-looking by any means, really need to use her yoga class to pick up guys (most of whom were probably gay anyway)?

2. Inappropriate attire: I have already touched on this, I know, but it really does irk me when people choose to wear clothing that is clearly not appropriate for yoga. Let’s get this straight: in yoga, you’re flexing, you’re squatting, you’re spread-eagle... I don’t think I need to spell it out, but listen, there is simply no need to wear flimsy running shorts which give the person behind you a complete view of your inner-workings. Get my drift? And considering that everyone is facing in the same direction, there is no way to avoid getting the money shot if the person in front of your chooses not to dress properly. It’s pretty bad from both perspectives; embarrassing if you suddenly realize you’ve been flashing the entire three rows behind the entire class and nauseating if you have someone’s bikini line staring back at you for the full hour.

1. Excessive moaning: This is, by far, my biggest yoga pet peeve because there is 100% no need for it. If you’ve ever been to yoga you know what I’m talking about. Yoga is all about the breathing (well, that’s what the instructors always say anyway, but I’ve just never been able to get it down), and taking big inhales and exhales as you do the sequence of poses. I got it. I get it. But the kind of moaning I’ve heard during some of my classes is completely unnecessary. There is one girl, let’s refer to her as Big L, who I’ve been in class with, purely by chance, on numerous occasions. She moans so loudly and so frequently that I just want to tap her on the shoulder and tell her that she sounds fucking ridiculous and needs to shut the fuck up. There is no need. The incessant moaning only makes other people feel uncomfortable. I know the yoga can feel great on the body, but this isn’t orgasm class. We’re not practicing our most convincing sex noises. This is yoga. The moaning needs to find it’s way back to Big L’s bedroom. Best case scenario, I am launched into a fit of uncontrollable laughing (which is also probably not so conducive to yoga). Worst case scenario, I finally hit my quota, get up, and punch a bitch.

I HATE! Being Kicked in the Face

Have you ever been kicked in the face? Unless you're a blackbelt in karate, experienced equestrian, and/or avid babysitter, probably not. But I have - several times in the last few weeks, in fact - and trust me, it's not enjoyable.

Kick in the Face #1

Location: St Marks & 3rd - Yoga to the People

I go through these phases where I am really into doing yoga as much as possible. It was during one of these phases that I went to a yoga class at a little downtown studio called Yoga to the People. If you've ever been to YTTP, you know that it is a 'donation-based studio' (as the various instructors ALWAYS remind you in a seemingly uniform and memorized monologue at the end of class, right before those eardrum-crushing Tibetan Singing Bowls) and therefore, the instructors try to pack as many people per square inch as they possibly can into each class. More people = more donations, obvi. Simple math. Anyway, because people are packed into these classes like cattle, room to actually practice the yoga poses correctly becomes a bit of hot commodity. In other words, there is no room to move. Basically, it was only a matter of time before someone's foot ended up in my face.

On this particular evening, the yoga studio was packed to the gills and sweaty as a sweatsuit-clad fat man in the Sahara. I was uncomfortable and irritated before the class even started. It didn't take long before Warrior One became problematic; with only a few inches of space between my face and the foot of the girl in front of me, I was constantly having to readjust in order to avoid a swift kick to the schnoz. But despite all my careful movement, it happened anyway and just as I predicted it would. As the girl in front of me lifted her leg before going into Warrior One, she hit me - full on. I could see it happening as if I was having an out-of-body-experience. In slow motion, the girl's foot grazed my chin, then dragged itself vertically across my face. It was shocking, disgusting, and more importantly, infuriating. Who wants another person's probably sweaty, callous-and-bunion-ridden, fungal foot rubbing up against what you use to eat with? It's totally and utterly disgusting. And what's more, the asshole didn't even apologize! After the class was over, she turned around briefly and gave me a momentary sympathetic glance and that was it. Horrific! Horrific! I had the fleeting thought to grab her foot and rip it off. But then I thought better of it; leaving a girl with a bloodied stump for a foot probably wouldn't bode well for me in the long run.

But I think it's safe to say I was scarred for life; I don't think I've been back to yoga since.

Kick in the face #2, #3, #4...

Location: 68th and 2nd - Julia Richman Education Complex

I almost tried to beat up a 6-foot, 7-inch boy last weekend. I was playing in the last game of a rather unsuccessful recreational soccer league season. Including myself, 5 people showed up for the game. Keep in mind, 5 people is how many you need to play. We had no subs. Most of the other people on the team (save for a few exceptions, mostly cocky asshole guys) seemingly decided that since our record was sub-par and because we had no chance of making it into the league playoffs, that they wouldn't show up for the last game. I was staring at the fact that out-of-shape me would have to play the entire game. In other words, I was already irritable and pissed.

We started to play and the score quickly became 6 - 0. Big surprise given that we had no subs and that the other team was playing with a full arsenal of seemingly-professional caliber players. One of these being a kid who probably topped out at 6-foot, 7-inches. Dude was a giant and thus, I will affectionately name him The Giant. Don't get me wrong here, I grew up playing rough-and-tumble co-ed soccer, so I know how to hold my own when playing with overly-competitive, overly-cocky, and overly-aggressive boys. This kid, surprise surprise, was no different. During the course of the game, The Giant continually tried to wow us all with his fancy footwork, but the problem was that he was just simply too long and lanky and kept constantly tripping over his own ginormous feet. It was pretty comical actually and I definitely laughed out-loud on more than one occasion. But this story is not all giggles and laughter, another side-effect of the The Giant being so, well, giant and long and lanky was that when he kicked, his foot would pretty much come to normal-person face-level. This didn't present itself as a problem until The Giant started playing offense and I started playing defense. In other words there were several moments of foot-to-face contact - and it was not pleasant. Having a foot constantly coming at your face is scary, especially when it's large enough to knock your head completely off your neck! By the end of the game, I wanted to throttle The Giant, but my exasperation was a wasted emotion; even if I'd wanted to start a fight, I wouldn't have been able to reach his face to punch him. Sigh.

Nevertheless, getting kicked in the face isn't pleasant; it could be the foot of some ditsy girl in yoga or the monstrous appendage of the giant that came down the beanstalk for Jack, it doesn't matter. Feet are f-ing disgusting and can be very damaging, especially if they meet with a face. Just ask Jackie Chan.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

I HATE! Adults Wearing Cartoon Character Clothing

Look - when you reach a certain age, there are certain things that are just no-longer acceptable. As much as we try to fend off the years with endless amounts of plastic surgery, anti-aging creams, and spa treatments, it's impossible to stop the aging process. After you hit 25, you need to lose the belly shirts, jeans that prominently display your thong to the world when you bend over, those bras with the clear straps (SO TACKY), etc. It's inevitable; at some point, you have to accept the fact that trying to hold on to the last remnants of your youth is futile. Thus said, I am going to propose that another item be added to that list of things not acceptable for adults: clothing featuring cartoon characters.

Ideally wearing this type of clothing should stop after the 2nd grade, but we're not all that clued-in. And it's surprising how many members of the over-25 set I've spotted in Minnie and Mickey tee-shirts, SpongeBob sweatshirts, and Looney Tunes bomber jackets. It's really mind-boggling. Not only do you look ridiculous when sporting 'toon attire after the age of 7, but any article of clothing I've seen that with a cartoon character on it reeks of trashiness. And I hate to say it, but I'm just trying to be honest here; there seems to be a direct correlation between how 'white trash' an individual is and the frequency in which said individual wears cartoon character clothing. I'm just saying.

But regardless of the stereotype I introduced above, my main problem here is that some people simply cannot accept the fact that they're grown and that certain articles of clothing are no loner appropriate. I don't think any one can argue with the fact that a 32-year-old woman with a beer belly should, under no circumstance, wear a mid-drift exposing top or have her navel pierced. Read: not appropriate. Nor should a 45-year-old guy wear his pants so low that you could have a picnic on his plaid boxer-clad ass. It's basic common sense. Some things you just have to let go of with age. Cartoon character clothing included. There is nothing cute about a mother-of-four traipsing around town in a Winnie the Pooh sweatsuit.
Note: It has also come to my attention (see photo above) that cartoon character clothing may, in some circles, be considered badass. My answer to this is simply: no. Not possible - there is NOTHING intimidating about someone with a huge picture of Mickey Mouse silk-screened across his or her chest. Unless Mickey magically comes to life, grabs a gun, jumps off the t-shirt, and jacks me up, I'm not exactly running down the block.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

I HATE! Smelling Like the Restaurant You Were Just In

Does it do any good to complain about something you can't change? No, probably not. But obviously, that is not the point of this blog. Do I think that I can influence people out of their ignorance, oblivion, self-absorption, or stupidity? No, course not. Do I think that through this blog I am able to magically make the changes I wish to see in the world. Clearly, I do not believe that I can. My point here is this: some of these postings are simply created as a venting mechanism and I know there is nothing I can do to change the unfortunate ways of the world.

That being said, I would, today, like to address a very important issue. A few weeks ago, I went to have Mexican food with my friend Robby. I had a burrito, a glass of red sangria, and more tortilla chips than is healthy to consume in one sitting. The restaurant was nothing special - not high-end nor low-rent. It was festively decorated and more importantly, the food was very yummy. Overall, I was quite satisfied with the dining experience... that was until I got outside.

Robby and I decided that a bottle of wine might be a nice way to finish our evening and as we ventured into the wine shop across the street, I began to notice the aroma of Mexican food was following me. At first, I just thought we could still smell the fumes from the restaurant from across the street, but as we entered the shop, it became strikingly apparent that I was what smelled like Mexican food. In fact, I smelled like I had just been stuffed with re-fried beans, cheese, gauc, steak, rice, and sour cream and then thrown into the deep fryer. Ick! Ugh! Gross!

I can absolutely not stand smelling like the food I have just consumed and frankly, I take it as a bad sign when you carry the smell of the restaurant you've just eaten in to every other place you go afterwards. Furthermore, this phenomenon causes me to avoid such establishments all together. If you can't keep the smell of cooking food in the kitchen, there is something seriously wrong. Don't get the wrong idea here, I love it when food comes out of the kitchen piping hot and smelling amazing, but that scent should not seep into your clothes and hair and follow you home like a stray puppy. To me, that is a tragic sign of bad food preparation - trans fats, lard, deep-frying, unidentifiable meat products - these words come to mind.

I really feel like this has to be some sort of health code violation - isn't there a regulatory policy regarding poisoning your patrons with the crippling scent of the food served? If not, there certainly should be. It could be very hazardous to your health - suppose you leave a restaurant smelling intensely of the grilled lamb chops you just enjoyed and on the way home the scent attracts a pack of wild dogs who then proceed to attack and maul you because they think you're packing lamb chops? This is a very plausible scenario.

But the thing is, you know the moment when you walk into a restaurant whether you're going to be taking a souvenir home with you after your meal - and I don't mean a doggie bag. For example, this past weekend, I was with my mother in the classiest city in the world, AC. And for lunch, after deciding that we both were craving hamburgers, we ventured into Johnny Rockets. I know, I know - Johnny Rockets isn't a 4-star establishment, but the food is yummy - especially when you're jonesing for a greasy loaded-up cheeseburger and fries. it's the kind of place that really hits the spot. Anyway, the moment I walked into the place, I knew I (and my brand-new wool coat) was going to carry the scent of the griddle with me for the rest of the day. The place reeked of grease. The air was saturated with the scent. You know when people use the phrase 'cut the tension with a knife'? Well, I think I could have cut the greasy air with a knife. It was horribly disgusting. I could feel the greasy and pungent odor permeating my pores, my hair, and my clothing. I almost couldn't finish my barbecue sauce-slathered, onion ring and bacon-topped cheeseburger... almost. No need to fret - I did manage to get it down.

And the moment I did, I got out of there as fast as I could... leaving a trail of the scent of cheeseburger down the boardwalk behind me.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I HATE! Muffin Top

After being sent the link to the picture above by a dear friend of mine, the following AIM conversation ensued:

Kelirish18: yes - that's some really bad muffin top

emdemas3: yeah

emdemas3: like turbo

Kelirish18: i would like to write about it

emdemas3: i think you should

Kelirish18: although muffin top that severe is kind of it's own punishment

emdemas3: yes

Kelirish18: i am also going to use these last few AIMs to introduce my point

Kelirish18: do you consent?

emdemas3: si

Muffin to describe it? Pretend you can't see the picture I posted at the top of this entry. Muffin top has been described (by William Safire in The New York Times Magazine) as "the roll of excess flesh spilling out primarily in front but possibly all around" of the top of one's pants. This means your pants are too tight, although by some miracle, you have been able to button them, but the fat that you couldn't squeeze into the pants overflows out of the top of the waistband.

You know, we've all been there. I'm not going to completely condemn anyone who occasionally sports a bit of muffin top. Sometimes it just happens. Sometimes you put on a pair of jeans you haven't worn in a while only to discover that you've gained a little weight around the middle. This can cause muffin top. Or sometimes your pants slide down from wear and all of a sudden - presto! - muffin top has been magically created.

I'm the first one to admit that in high school, I often tried to squeeze myself into pants that were a little bit too small for me. (The painted-on pants look was big circa 1999 - 2003.) This is the most common cause of the muffin top and usually causes the most severe kind. See the photo above for a perfect example. But look, the reason I really hate muffin top is because a) it looks icky, especially when the muffin-topper's shirt is also simultaneously riding up to expose said muffin top and b) because muffin top can be easily remedied with a bigger pair of pants.
And don't tell me you can't bear to admit that you've grown width-wise. I know it hurts to go up a pants size. Admittedly, I've been known to refuse to buy clothes if I can't fit into the size I think I should normally wear. But seriously, if the size you think you should normally wear causes the muffin top effect pictured above, it's time to admit you need to go up a size... or a couple sizes.
And if you refuse to admit to yourself that you need the next size up, do what I do - cut the size tag out. Believe me, you'll be doing us ALL a favor.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

I HATE! Selfishness

Yes, I'll admit - everyone is selfish once in a while. And once in awhile, selfishness is OK. Like alcohol, selfishness is not detrimental when used in moderation. However, it never ceases to amaze me just how selfish people can be. Let's take a example straight out of the headlines:

AIG executives spent thousands during hunting trip
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A handful of top executives from American International Group Inc. spent thousands of dollars during a recent English hunting trip, even as the New York-based insurer asked for an additional $37.8 billion loan from the Federal Reserve.

The news comes as New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday told the insurance giant to do away with golden parachutes for executives, golf outings and parties while taking government money to stay afloat.

Cuomo said he has the power under state business law to review and possibly rescind any inappropriate AIG spending as long as the Federal Reserve is propping up the huge insurer with almost $123 billion in loans announced since Sept. 16.

"This was an annual event for customers of the AIG property casualty insurance companies in the U.K. and Europe, and planned months before the Federal Reserve Bank of New York's loan to AIG," company spokesman Peter Tulupman said Wednesday morning.
In a prepared statement later in the day, the company said, "We will continue to take all measures necessary to ensure that these activities cease immediately. AIG's priority is to continue focusing on actions necessary to repay the Federal Reserve loan and emerge as a vital, ongoing business."

AIG officials declined to say which AIG executives attended the trip, which reports have said racked up an $86,000 tab. News of the hunting trip surfaced just days after AIG received an additional $37.8 billion loan from the Federal Reserve, on top of a previous $85 billion emergency loan granted last month.

The company said last week it would stop "all non-essential conferences, meetings and activities that do not clearly maximize value and service given the current conditions."

Last month, and just days after the U.S. government stepped in to save AIG with a $85 billion taxpayer-funded loan, the company picked up a $440,000 tab for a week-long retreat at a posh California resort for top-performing insurance agents.

Lawmakers investigating AIG's meltdown said they were enraged that executives of AIG's main U.S. life insurance subsidiary spent a lavish amount on the retreat, complete with spa treatments, banquets and golf outings. Last week, White House Press Secretary Dana Perino called the event "despicable."

At that time, AIG issued a statement saying that the "business event" was planned months before the Sept. 16 bailout and that it was held for top-producing independent life insurance agents, not AIG employees. Of the 100 attendees, only 10 worked for the AIG unit hosting the event, it said.

The insurer said Chief Executive Edward Liddy sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson "clarifying the circumstances" of the event. In the letter, Liddy assured Paulson that AIG is "reevaluating the costs of all aspects of our operations in light of the new circumstances in which we are all operating."

The insurer then said it canceled a future California retreat that was to be held later this month.

Regarding the recent hunting trip, "We regret that this event was not canceled," Tulupman said Wednesday.

This has to be a joke, right? The government just spent $123 billion to bail AIG out - a bail out needed because executives at AIG, clouded by greed and selfishness, fucked up and gave mortgages to people who couldn't afford them in order to boost their business, never even thinking that a financial crisis of this magnitude could have them tumbling from atop their ivory towers.

After receiving the first of two loans from the Federal government, AIG executives went on a retreat to a fancy-schmancy California resort and racked up a $440,000 bill. This was just DAYS after AIG received it's first loan (for $85 billion) to help it stay afloat. What on earth would possess anyone to assume that after almost tanking completely, the company could afford to send it's executives on a completely unnecessary retreat? I know what the company was thinking; it was thinking that it could have the American taxpayers foot the bill for the trip and still escape seemingly unscathed from the current financial crisis. How incredibly infuriating!!!!!! The greed and selfishness of AIG executives can be directly attributed to helping destroy the American economy, and then, they have the audacity to keep this trip on the books! Unbe-fucking-lievable.

And on top of that, the company later was the recipient of yet another billion-dollar-loan ($37.9 billion to be exact) and executives go on another taxpayer funded extravaganza -this time it was a hunting expedition in England. AIG big wigs flew on a private get and hunted in the English countryside. Total price tag: $86,000.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but shouldn't AIG be concentrating on cutting costs and repaying the nearly $123 billion it owes to the Federal government? That seems logical to me, but I guess I have a different opinion than money-grubbing insurance executives who continue to prove themselves to be greedy, selfish, and bottom-feeding by constantly taking advantage of the American people.

How hard would it have been to simply cancel these trips? AIG's spokesperson has said that the company regrets that these trips were not cancelled. Well, that's easy to say, but it's also just as easy to do. I think it would have been understood that keeping the company afloat was just a little bit more important than hunting quail in the English countryside. And obviously, hindsight is 20 / 20. Do you think AIG thought about cancelling said trips beforehand? You betcha. And do you think AIG went ahead with said trips because it thought it could get away with going ahead with them anyway? You betcha. I don't accept the 'these trips were planned way in advance' excuse for a second.

The economy is in crisis ASSHOLES, do you fucking part, and by do your part, I mean, you fucked it all up in the first place; the least you could do is put off your $86,000 hunting trip until all those people who's homes have been foreclosed on (because YOU gave them mortgages they couldn't possibly afford) have somewhere to live again.

Friday, October 3, 2008

I HATE! Night Sweats

Perhaps you've noticed I haven't posted anything for a couple of days. Let's be realistic, you probably didn't notice. But in order to avoid any dramatic diatribes, let me just say that a period of my life has just come to a close and I've been a little down / out of it because of said change.

Anyway, let me get to the point of this post. I haven't been sleeping well for weeks - I would say that I've been waking up several times during the night for seemingly no good reason for the past three or four weeks. I can't figure it out. And just for the record, this major life change occurred after I had already begun to sleep badly.

It started with me waking up out of the blue in the middle of the night. I would wake up at 4 AM, then again at 5 AM, then again at 6 AM, and so on until the morning when I would actually need to get up for work. (And by that time, I was so exhausted, I could barely roll myself out of bed and into the bathroom to shower. Not joke, I think I've fallen asleep in the shower on more than one occasion.)

Sound bad, right? Well it gets worse. Since said life change, I have begun to experience what those in the medical field refer to as 'night sweats'. And let me tell you, they're pretty unpleasant. Now, instead of just waking up in the middle of the night numerous times, (and I'm warning you, this is kind of gross; you may not want to read on) I wake up sweating profusely and freezing. And when I say sweating profusely, I really mean it. Each time I wake up, the back of my shirt is drenched and I am forced to change to a clean one.

What the F? Seriously? This has been going on for a couple of night now and I am already losing my mind! Not only am I constantly exhausted (and drinking more coffee than is humanly possible and probably safe), but I am also going through clean shirts like there is no tomorrow. (And considering that I absolutely hate doing laundry, this by-product of the night sweats verges on being the most deplorable part!) And this is all beside the fact that I absolutely abhor sweating and try my very best to do it as little as possible.

Ugh, so I'm not sure whether I can attribute the night sweats to the 'life change' or what, but I'm really starting to get sick of this business. I need my sleep. I don't want to be doing laundry until I'm 90. And I certainly don't need another thing to be worried about.

Night sweats are idiotic - it's not as if I physically feel ill when I'm waking up during the night. I just wake up sweaty and cold. So pointless! I've been told they're caused by stress, which, given what's going on in my life right now, makes complete sense. Although WebMD says that any of the following can be the cause of said night sweats:

1. Menopause (Fan-fucking-tastic! I'm only 23 - this does not look good for my ovaries.)

2. Idiopathic hyperhidrosis (Apparently, this means your body has an imbalance and produces too much sweat. Great - I'm a sweaty monster.)

3. Infections (I don't need this shit.)

4. Cancer (WebMD says night sweats can be an early sign of cancer - again I'm only 23, cancer would really be most unfortunate.)

5. Medications (I'm not taking any so this must mean I am dieing of cancer.)

6. Hypoglycemia (Not diabetic, so again, clearly I am dieing of cancer.)

7. Hormone disorders (Does this mean I should be crying one moment and jumping up and down the next?)

8. Neurologic conditions (Great - my brain is going to fall out of my ear.)

So now that WebMD has thoroughly scared the shit out of me (which it has done on many many occasions before), I am going to go ponder my impending doom. Remind me to blog about how much I hate WebMD and should never ever look at it again.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

I HATE! Improper Eating Etiquette

I'm a stickler for table manners. Ok - I'll admit that on occasion, I may have allowed my elbows to rest upon the table, but other than that, I am usually very keen on maintaining proper composure at the dinner table. But it has come to my attention that not everyone holds these values in as high regard as I do. I'm not going to jump across the table and throttle you if you accidentally begin speaking without having fully cleared your mouth of food, but I will stare at your gaping mouth you until you realize that you need to finish that bite of pasta before continuing your thought. Table manners are important simply because it's really easy for food to go from looking like something delectable to becoming something vomit-inducing. So let's discuss some of my favorite (read: most hated) examples of improper eating etiquette.

1. Talking with Food in Your Mouth

I'm not sure I know anyone that enjoys watching someone else chew with his or her mouth open. It's simply not a pretty picture. Staring at half-masticated food practically falling out of another person's mouth while he or she tries to articulate a complete sentence is certainly not my favorite past time. And I'm confidant in saying that talking with food in your mouth is an offense abhorred across the board and it's probably number one on the list of bad table manners. It's easy to avoid this atrocity; keep your mouth closed until you manage to finish every last bit of the bite. Remember your thought and just wait the chewing out. People will be much more interested in what you have to say when they can actually concentrate on what is coming out of your mouth instead of what's inside your mouth.

2. Chewing with Your Mouth Open

Next comes chewing with your mouth open. I have a very dear friend, whom I love, but I discovered, while on vacation with her, that she chews with her mouth open and to top it off, the chewing-with-her-mouth-open seems to produce a weird smacking sound - a noise, which unfortunately, is completely un-ignorable. When eating with said friend, I noticed that it became increasingly difficult to not concentrate on the smacking. It was almost mesmerizing - well, that was until I realized that I'd tuned everything else out and was literally staring at her gaping mouth trying to determine just how the smacking was being generated. Generally embarrassing for all parties involved. Such a situation can be avoided by making sure to chew with your mouth closed.

3. Eating Like You've Never Eaten Before

I will admit that I have been known to inhale my food every now and again, but I really try not to make a habit of it. I do understand that sometimes you are just so hungry that eating like you've never had a meal in your life seems the the best way to go about filling your belly. Unfortunately, doing this makes you look like a bit of a heathen. You are supposed to enjoy your food and slowly savor each bite - even if it means physically restraining yourself in order to do so. The solution to this problem (and I'm sorry if you're starving, but this is just the way it's got to be) is making sure to chew each bite until it is truly broken down enough to swallow without any trouble. Take your time. The food will most likely taste even better if you chew it thoroughly and slowly instead of swallowing it all whole. AND, you won't look like a caveman.

4. Eating Sloppily

Look, here is another reason to adhere to eating etiquette - you won't spill all over yourself. If you eat sloppily, chances are, you will end up with food all over the front of your shirt and that is not exactly attractive. It's not appealing when you can tell what someone had for dinner just by looking at his or her shirt. That is a bad sign and most likely, not attract any potential mates. Those Tide to Go commercials that feature a prominently-displayed stain demanding attention are 100% accurate - no one is going to pay a damn bit of attention to you if you're covered in marinara sauce and pesto stains. Slow down. Pay attention. It will save you heartache in the long run.

Basically, I just want everyone to know how easy it is to disgust others with improper eating etiquette. Like I said earlier, there is a fine fine line between something mouth-watering and something utterly repulsive - and line is often tread upon by those who do not honor what their parents have taught them about proper dinner table behavior.

Monday, September 22, 2008

I HATE! More than Sarah Palin's 'Lipstick' Comment

Is this a mother f-ing joke?
Palin's Town Charged Women for Rape Exams

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (CNN) -- Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's hometown required women to pay for their own rape examinations while she was mayor, a practice her police chief fought to keep as late as 2000...

...Former state Rep. Eric Croft, a Democrat, sponsored a state law requiring cities to provide the examinations free of charge to victims. He said the only ongoing resistance he met was from Wasilla, where Palin was mayor from 1996 to 2002. "It was one of those things everyone could agree on except Wasilla," Croft told CNN. "We couldn't convince the chief of police to stop charging them."

And consider this:
For years, Alaska has had the worst record of any state in rape and in murder of women by men. The rape rate in Alaska is 2.5 times the national average.

Although some claim that Palin was not aware that her town was charging rape victims for exams, I don't believe it for a minute. How could you be the mayor of a town of no more than 6,000 people and not be aware of such an egregious error in policy?

I HATE! Being Out of Shape

On a whim, I decided to join an indoor soccer league - something I am actually very excited about. First of all, I haven't been able to play soccer - one of my most favorite past times - in close to 5 years. (Ok, ok - it's not as if I wasn't able to due to some sort of injury or lack of time; it's just that I never got off of my lazy ass and signed up for a league.) Second of all, I have pretty much been a blob for the last year and half and have not been motivated to exercise in any way, shape, or form. After realizing that my waist size has been expanding at an exponential rate, I decided that it was finally time to do something about it - lest lose the ability to fit into any of my jeans... right in the nick of time for skirt weather (read: elastic waistband weather) to head out the door. So in lieu of running once every 5 months, I decided that the most promising way to get myself into good shape and a regular exercise routine would be to join a soccer league. And then presto! I would be in shape in no time!

Haha - obviously, there were some major flaws in my plan. Despite having run a couple of times in the past couple weeks (OK - once two weeks ago), I severely underestimated how much being in shape is integral to playing indoor soccer. Let me just bring to the attention of all my readers (haha - all 3 of you!): indoor soccer is quite different from the outdoor stadium-style soccer most are used to. Indoor soccer is played in a much smaller space (usually a gymnasium of some sort), the game is much faster-paced, and even the defensemen don't stay stationary for long.

Good god! Let me tell you that this is sport one must prepare heavily for. The halves are only 25 minutes and in this league there are no rigid rules for when you are allowed to sub in and out, but, seriously, my body was not even close to ready for what I subjected it to. And I've played this sport before - I should have known what was to befall me! It's time to start running... E-V-E-R-Y D-A-Y.

And now, on to the list of injuries I sustained.

1 square inch blood blister on the ball of my right foot
* I could barely walk on it and therefore, was forced to drain it. Fun way to spend a Sunday evening, right?

jammed toe
* I am excited to report that the jammed toe is now black and blue with an intense feeling of pain / pressure coming from behind the nail. I fear the toenail may fall off.

shin splints (on both shins)
* Self-explanatory.

sprained ankle (caused by a previous incident, but aggravated Sunday)
* So, on Friday night, I fell trying to get off of a boat. I rolled my ankle and then tried to play soccer on it on Sunday - dumb, I know.

open wound on left foot (also caused by a previous incident, but aggravated on Sunday)
*This wound was also caused when I fell off of the boat on Friday, but after ace-bandaging the sprained ankle, the wound kind of got stuck to the bandage and ending up looking pretty f-ing disgusting.

Needless to say, I'm in pretty bad shape, both in the respects of physical fitness and injury. I feel like I have the body of an 87-year-old with arthritis. You should see me - I've been hobbling around my office completely hunched over. If I were any closer to the floor, I'd be crawling. How do you get one of those Jazzies? Moral of the story: being out of shape sucks - avoid it at all costs. And don't try to play a physically demanding sport if you have been sitting on your couch for 5 months straight. Take it from me, it won't turn out well.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I HATE! Sarah Palin's 'Lipstick' Comment

"What's the difference between a hockey mom and a pitbull? Lipstick." - GOP VP Nominee, Sarah Palin

I haven't made much mention of politics on this blog, which is slightly unusual, because I do, in fact, have a concrete opinion on every aspect of the upcoming Presidential election. However, I haven't yet made a decision as to whether I am going to make a habit of bringing my political views to this forum. Don't get me wrong, I could go on for days about the current administration and everything I hate about it. And believe me, there is a lot to comment on, but I've mainly been using this blog as a way to vent about silly things, nothing as serious as politics, and I think I may keep it that way. (But... maybe not, we'll see how heated I get as this silly process continues on down the line.)

I do have to comment though on something Republican Vice Presidential Nominee, Sarah Palin, said during her nomination acceptance speech at the GOP convention in Minneapolis / St. Paul a few weeks ago. She asked: 'What's the difference between a hockey mom and a pitbull?' What, Sarah, what is the answer? 'Lipstick,' she replied. Lipstick, lipstick? Are you f-ing kidding me? Good lord, she is the first woman to ever be nominated by the GOP for Vice President and that is what she says... ???

I am not going to pretend to like Sarah Palin simply because she is a woman. Hell to the no. I won't get sucked into that trap as so many other Americans have. After all, the woman has some pretty awful politics; she is adamantly pro-life, while her 17-year-old daughter Bristol (I won't even touch the weird name issue) is knocked up by some self-proclaimed redneck and is probably ruining her life because she is keeping (read: being forced to keep) the baby and marry good old Levi.

But that's all beside the point. I'm not here to focus on Palin's politics; I'm here to focus on the thoroughly cliched and just plain old ridiculous comment that has gained her so much fame. Pitbull??? Lipstick??? Ugh - are we supposed to be intimidated by you, Sarah Palin, because you likened yourself to a pitbull? Are we supposed to aspire to be like you because you claim to be a strong and ruthless political figure as well as a good mother and the every man's woman? I've seen those gun-yielding pictures of you... And good mother? HA! Your 17-year-old daughter is pregnant! Both your oldest son, Track, who is being shipped off to Iraq (oh, how wonderfully heroic - read: cliched) in the very near future, AND pregnant Bristol, were both just exposed to be hard partying teens in the press. Mother of the Year? I think not.

But seriously, I'm not trying to pick on Sarah Palin's parenting skills. I just cannot believe that her pitbull comment has gotten so much media coverage. It just seems so utterly corny to me. And it seems that I may very well be alone is this feeling; I picked up the Wall Street Journal this morning to find this, 'Many women are snapping up her [Palin's] choices of shoes and eyeglasses and blogging about which brand of lipstick she wears.' Blogging about which brand of lipstick she wears?!?!?! Good god - if this isn't a sign of the apocalypse, I don't know what is.

Women, and the general population for that matter, of this country need to learn to see past the rhetoric of campaign speeches and official statements. During her acceptance speech, Palin said two things that made the ears of women everywhere perk up: hockey mom and lipstick. She used those words to trick American women into thinking that she is just like you and me. Those two phrases do not indicate that Palin will have the best interests of American women at heart if she and John McCain are elected. Just look at her politics; clearly she does not.

Get a new speech-writer, Sarah Palin! You're rhetoric is cliched. Your attempts to woo the women of this country are laughable. I can see right through you!

I HATE! Toe Overhang

OK - this is a bad example of what I'm talking about. Obviously, I would NEVER advocate wearing those Teva-esque sandals pictured above. I hate Teva's (and anything similar) just about as much as I hate Birkenstocks (read: A LOT). But this is the only picture I could find on Google Images that demonstrated toe overhang. Get it together Goggle Images!
Anyway, the photo above demonstrates what I mean by Toe Overhang - this phenomena occurs when your shoes don't quite fit you properly (i.e. they're too f-ing small) and as a result, your toes hang over the front of your shoe. This can happen with completely open-toed sandals as well as with peep toes and pretty much any shoe that doesn't fully enclose your toes.
And as with many other things, I cannot tolerate this trend simply because it is gross. It is just plain icky to see someone's gnarly toe hanging over the front of his or her shoe. It's reminds me of a crotchety old witch with hairy warts and arthritis crossed with toe jam and dirt. Every time I spot someone rocking the toe hangover, I think 'Attack of the Killer Giant Toe!' Every body run - the giant toe has broken out of it's cage (the shoe) and is coming after us all! AHHHHHHHHH!
Seriously though, toe hangover is gross, and what's more, the problem can be SO EASILY REMEDIED! Just get an f-ing bigger shoe! No one cares how big your foot is! Having to go up a shoe size is not comparable to having to go up a dress size - there is no shame in it! There IS shame in having your disgusting arthritis-ridden toe hanging over the front of your shoe because you refuse to go up to to that size 10.
More importantly - how can one not realize that his or her shoes are too small? Isn't it uncomfortable to have you toe hanging out for all the world to see? Personally, I couldn't walk around like that and I firmly believe that it is a physical impossibility that one wouldn't notice their own toe overhang!
Please note: I do sympathize with the fact that, sometimes, when you wear peep toe pumps, your foot can slide forward because of the elevation of the heel, creating the illusion of toe hangover. This is not real toe hangover - and I will not persecute anyone for that.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

I HATE! Crocs - An Update

As I reported earlier this year, Crocs are, in fact, the devil's footwear...

Parents Sue Crocs After Child's Foot Is Maimed in Escalator
Tuesday, September 09, 2008
AP via,2933,419962,00.html

ATLANTA — The family of a child whose foot was maimed in an escalator accident at the Atlanta airport is suing Crocs Inc., saying the Colorado-based footwear company failed to put safety features in the soft-soled shoes.

It's the second federal lawsuit filed this summer involving a child wearing Crocs injured on escalators at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.
The lawsuit filed Aug. 26 by Clark Meyer, who is the father of a 4-year-old boy identified as "A.M.," seeks $2 million in damages.

Attorney Stephen McConnell said the boy was riding an escalator at the airport July 15 when the machinery mangled his Crocs and "severely and permanently damaged" his right foot.
Crocs spokeswoman Tia Mattson declined to comment.

New York-based attorney Andrew Laskin, who is leading the case, also is handling the case of a 3-year-old girl from Louisville, Ky., injured when an escalator ripped skin from her foot and broke three toes in June.

Laskin is also suing Crocs over a child who was hurt at a Los Angeles mall. He has settled two other cases with the footwear company, but declined to comment on them.

"This is happening everywhere and Crocs is basically saying it's the fault of the escalators — or the parents are not watching their children," Laskin said. "But that would be the case only if it kept happening on the same escalator over and over again."

In April, Japanese and Filipino authorities asked the Niwot, Colo.-based company to consider changing the footwear's design because of similar escalator accidents in their countries.
The shoe company has promised to insert safety tags into its packaging by next year.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has documented 77 soft shoe entrapments on escalators since January 2006 and issued a warning in May.

In a 16-page letter to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission in June, the company's engineering director Erik Olson said Crocs has knowledge of 186 accidents involving its shoes and has initiated "safety investigations."

But he added, "Crocs shoes neither present nor introduce a unique hazard pattern when worn by children or adults on escalators."

Mattson would not say how many times the company has been sued or settled lawsuits.
At least three children were injured in the last three months when Atlanta airport escalators gobbled up their flip flops or Crocs.

The airport began posting signs and airing public service announcements in August warning travelers of the dangers of "shoe entrapment" on escalators. Georgia Department of Labor workers examined the escalators and deemed them safe.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

I HATE! Hair Flippers

I'm having a bad day. You see, I'm feeling a bit down and since nothing seems to be helping to cheer me up, I have decided that some good old fashioned hating is the only thing that might do the trick.

And please note: what I'm about to write about here is not what is actually getting me down. I just don't want anyone thinking that the hair flipper I encountered on the subway yesterday is making me re-think my whole life. Just know that this venting session is purely a cathartic measure and is in no way related to my temporary depression.

And now for the story: as per my usual routine, I boarded the D train in Columbus Circle yesterday evening to begin my lengthy commute back to the BK. Everything was peachy keen until we stopped at West 4th. A predictably-dressed NYU-looking girl (you know the type - long stringy blond hair, short and raggedy cut-off shorts, the overly saturated Ray Bans, long grandpa cardigan, and chain with an insignificant, over-sized, and indistinguishable mass of charms) got on the train and (of course) nudged her way into the empty (although barely) seat between me and another passenger. Normally, I'd complain about her wedging herself into that particular seat (if you've read this site before, you know how I feel about that middle seat), but she was tiny (of course!) and wasn't touching me at all, so I took a breath and just let it be.

We're riding, riding, riding along. I'm minding my own business, reading my newspapers when all of a sudden, I get smacked in the face with a long strand of blond hair. Oh no she didn't. I had just given her a break. I didn't get angry when she ignored my death stares and sat down, carefreely, in the empty middle seat. And now this? The girl had literally flipped her hair INTO MY FACE! Can you believe it? And guess what? She kept doing it. 4 times, yes 4 times, I was hit in the face by that stringy blond hair. In retrospect, I should have punched her in the face - obvi. But I didn't, so I gave her my best 'you'd-better-stop-doing-that-before-I-rip-that-hair-out-of-your-faux-hipster-head' look.

Eventually, she got the hint (and looked mighty relieved when I vacated my seat as we neared my stop). But seriously, ladies please! No one wants strands of someone else's hair on them - no matter how good your shampoo smells. Forreal. Hair other than your own is gross. Period. Just think; there could be all sorts of gross and contagious conditions being bred in your hair - lice, dandruff, alopecia... Keep the hair flipping to a minimum. It's a matter of public health.

Monday, September 8, 2008

I HATE! Friend-Stealers

The first thing I'm going to do here is to acknowledge the fact that I haven't posted anything in 5.63 million years. What can I say? I guess I just haven't been hating on much recently. (I know, I know - me not hating on something is a near impossibility, but that's my story and I'm sticking to it!)

Anyway, as of late, I've been realizing that a lot of the strongest friendships in my life have been dwindling, or, at least, the relationships have been changing - and I don't like it. I'll even go as far as to say that it seems to be becoming a trend - people I've, as recently as several months ago, considered to be within the best friends circle have been drifting away at alarming rates! I don't know whether this should be attributed to the fact that most of these aforementioned friends and myself are now our of school and fending for ourselves in the real world or to the fact that these friends and I are just no longer compatible? Whatever the cause, these friendship dissolutions have got me down... but not as down as I became when I discovered another alarming friendship trend!

Picture this: I met a girl a few years ago in.. let's say in a college class. We hit it off immediately and became fast friends. Then I introduced her to another friend of mine and wouldn't you know it - they got along just as well. Sounds great, right? Think again. The problem arose when I suddenly became keen to the fact that, at some point, these two girls had become better friends with each other than they were with me! And I had been pretty much pushed out of the equation completely. Before I knew what had hit me, I was cut out of brunch plans, shopping trips, and lazy Sunday's spent watching old episodes of Gossip Girl.

And, I wish I could bitch and moan and complain about what assholes these two formers besties are, but to be honest, and this may come as a shock to some of those who know me to have a stone-cold heart, nobody likes to lose friends (or alienate people) - even me! So, even though I technically HATE when two friends of yours become closer with each other than either is with you, I can't bad-mouth it. I guess it just happens. Obviously, 'how dare they?' and all of that, but you can't make someone be friends with you. Right?

So, that's about it. I had to post this entry - simply because it is, in fact, something I truly hate, but from now on, I promise to ban sappy posts and be sassy, mean, and cynical from here on out!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

I HATE! When People Read Over Your Shoulder

This actually happens to me a lot. I'll be on the subway, coming home from my office, reading a newspaper, and suddenly, I'll realize that the person sitting next to me is reading the page along with me. Number One: this is nosy - you should mind your own business. Number Two: you're probably too close for comfort: reading over someone else's shoulder often causes you to adjust yourself to be in way too close of a proximity to the original reader. You should back off. Someone could easily take your re-adjustment the wrong way and either a) call the cops on you or b) kick your ass. When someone is reading over your shoulder, you know. You can feel the impending mass. All bodies give off a certain magnetism that can be sensed even when there is no physical touching. And let me tell you, it's a pretty creepy feeling to have to sit next to someone who is hovering over you the whole way home.

And I don't even have to go into how rude it is to read over another person's shoulder. It just is. You are not to position yourself so closely to a stranger as to make them uncomfortable. It defies the laws of common courtesy. (And you all know how big of a proponent of common courtesy I am.)

Let me just also say that reading over someones shoulder when you have B.O. is completely UNACCEPTABLE. If you sense for even one second that you have B.O. (which you should totally be aware of, because if not, I feel REALLY bad for you) or smell like moth balls or have bad breath, DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT ever read over someones shoulder. Yesterday, I got on the train and began my usual routine of reading the papers. At the next stop, two 20-something fellows boarded the train and instantly, the entire car filled with the scent of B.O. - B.O. that had been marinating in a gym locker for 4 years. And of course, these two lovely gentlemen sat down right next to me. I tried my hardest to ignore the scent, but it became literally unbearable when the fellow closest to me (covertly - except NOT) scooted over to try to catch a glimpse of my paper. AWFUL times a MILLION. No joke. Serious as serious can be. I could feel the vomit rising in my throat.

I can't forget to mention the fact that if someone is reading over your shoulder and you're aware of it, you are suddenly in the position of questioning whether to turn the page when you're finished reading it or whether to turn to the next page when you notice that the over-the-shoulder-reader is finished reading. This is like the BEST case scenario. This is what would happen if you're the nicest person in the world, which clearly, I am not. But even so, the over-the-shoulder-reading causes problems. Period.

On a personal note, I do not react well in this particular situation. When I catch someone reading over my shoulder, I tend to make a big deal of turning away and huffing and puffing. I will probably make you feel bad about doing it - which you should. So stop.

Monday, August 4, 2008

I HATE! Men with Long Fingernails

Good Lord! This is one of the more revolting trends I will discuss on this blog. Long fingernails - when too long - are disgusting on both men and women, but when men have overly-long fingernails, it's really f-ing gross. It really is truly disgusting. And what I can't figure out is WHY men would need long fingernails in the first place. Long fingernails are considered to be a predominantly feminine trend, no? The only reasons a guy would need long fingernails is if a) he is a coke-head and uses the long nails to do bumps when no key can be found, b) he doesn't own a nail clipper and adamantly opposes biting his nails, or c) he keeps them extra long for back-scratching purposes.

Let me assure you, this entire line of questioning runs through my head every time I walk into the deli across the street from my apartment because there is a particular cashier there who has ONE (as in singular) LONG PINKY FINGERNAIL. Jesus, is it gross. I kind of squirm and / or cringe every time I catch a glimpse of the mutant nail touching whatever I am purchasing on that particular day. I try to look away as he is bagging my groceries (ok, usually it's just beer, but still).

Admittedly, I may be slightly bias on this issue, however, as there was once a fellow I knew who really wronged me, and HE had slightly over-the-length-limit-for-men fingernails. I will freely admit that because I really detest this fellow and loathe his name and any memory I have of him, that this clouds my judgment on the long-fingernails-on-men issue. But still - I cannot believe that I will ever be able to locate a woman who finds this offensive practice attractive or enthralling. Thoughts?

P.S. I really wanted to post a picture of Freddy Kruger (because he has really-long, albeit metal, fingernails), but my computer had a brain fart and wouldn't allow it, so I posted the above photo instead. Just imagine that fellow touching you with those nails. Enjoy!