Everyone thinks he or she is a better driver than most other drivers are, but I believe there are a lot out there who should receive electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) or, in exceptional cases, a dose of potassium cyanide. Topping my list is the motorist who signals his turn when already in the left-turn lane and halfway through the intersection. He presumably does this to remind himself that he has made a turn; it has nothing to do with signaling his intention to other road users. Many drivers apparently suffer from acute arthritis or a complete loss of strength in one or more of their fingers; otherwise, they would be able to depress the turn-signal lever on their steering column. They breeze around corners or change lanes blissfully unaware that they share the highway with other folk not blessed with telepathic powers. That the law permits motorists to drive while texting, conversing on cell phones, applying makeup, shaving, or studying maps, indicates the abysmal understanding of good driving habits on the part of those who establish driving regulations and of the driving population as a whole.

In a different field of complaint, there are male pests who, despite wearing an ounce of cheap cologne, try to demonstrate their manliness by shaking hands with a grip that could crush bricks. Tall men with long legs, who are obliged to squeeze into tiny airplane seats, take their revenge on the airline and society by constantly bumping the back of your seat through the thin piece of fabric between your spine and their foot or knee.

How do you feel about people who use the last sheet of toilet tissue without mentioning the fact to those responsible for replenishing supplies? There is the hotel room-maid who fails to report that the room she has cleaned daily for many months lacks a light bulb by the bed, or has a dripping shower faucet, or a washbasin plug that doesn’t function.

A frequent pest is the dog owner, with the voice of a drill sergeant, who stands outside your bedroom window at five a.m., and holds a conversation with another dog owner three-hundred feet away.

There are hosts who provide guest toilets with tanks that take fifteen minutes to refill after flushing. Other hosts think it’s cute for their hyperactive pooch to jump on you as soon as you enter their home, or they smile as it insists on sharing the sofa with you, thereby liberally spreading its hair all over your clean clothing. There are homeowners who dump loose newspapers on top of their garbage or recycle bins and let them blow down the street in the wind to collect on neighbors’ driveways; while others persist in leaving their garage doors open semi-permanently so fellow neighbors can enjoy its messy interior.

So many women appear to believe they can only look attractive if they wear their hair shoulder-length or longer. That would be OK except for those who are rough around the edges and who spend so much time fussing with their hair: checking and brushing it in the rear-view mirror while driving, or running their fingers through it and tossing it around while standing or sitting close to you. Very unhygienic! They are as rude as men who think it acceptable to sit in cafés or restaurants while wearing a baseball hat and filthy sneakers!

And another thing: I can’t stand people who complain about everything.



About Michael E. Sedgwick

I live in a beautiful retirement community beneath the Catalina Mountains, 26 miles north of Tucson, and enjoy writing short stories, novels, memoirs and essays. I've been married to a wonderful woman for 56 years and enjoy traveling the world with her.
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