That Really Grinds My Gears

Just about every Saturday morning finds my husband (who has sworn me to absolute secrecy as to his identity, so for those of you who know me, you, too are sworn) and me leisurely walking down Third Street in downtown Geneva, IL with a cup of Caribou coffee.  We look forward to these strolls as a nice way to welcome the weekend.  But, we’ve noticed a particular habit of many people that has my husband fuming.  Here’s the situation:  when you’re walking on a sidewalk, and are approached by others walking towards you, the natural (or so we thought) thing to do is for each party to move aside, as needed.  So, why is it, then, that we are the ONLY ones who EVER make the move, often ending up on the grass while the oncoming traffic completely monopolizes the walkway?   Hmmmmm?????? 

There is often pedestrian traffic on the sidewalks  of Third Street, as it is a favorite destination among visitors to Geneva, especially as we near the holidays. But, honestly,  it NEVER fails that he and I are ALWAYS the ones who end up practically dodging cars in the street to avoid ramming head-on into these rude, self-absorbed people.  Seriously, what has become of common courtesy and civility?  Obviously, some situations may call for relinquishing your ground – wheelchairs and baby strollers come to mind.  I mean, I’m a reasonable person.   I’m not trying to be territorial.  But gee whiz.  We’ve even tried experimenting with what would happen if we just didn’t budge.  Well, physical contact is what happens.  This phenomenon has become my husband’s overriding pet peeve.  I’m interested in hearing yours.  What grinds your gears?  We’re sure there must be millions of irritating things people do floating around out there and we want to put together a comprehensive list in our unending mission to rid the world of annoying behavior by rude people.  What do you say?  Are you in?  Leave a comment and tell your friends.  I’ll start:  Is overuse of CAPITAL letters to emphasize a point a pet peeve?  I want to know…MAYBE.


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12 responses to “That Really Grinds My Gears

  1. Padre

    Sounds like this could end up being called “World War 3rd Street”! Thanks for passing along the link – Great stuff here!

    • Ooooohhhhh – I really like that! “World War 3rd Street”, haha! I think I will need to consult with you on future titles! Thanks for the comment, Padre. You’re the best!!!! 🙂
      (And I really mean that smiley face!)

  2. Ginger Weber

    Have you made a note of the age of these rude and uncivil sidewalk-hogging individuals?? Having raised individuals that are now in their college years, I would like to think that I have taught them to have good manners, be considerate, etc. However, I can’t guarantee that when they are not with me that they are putting the “rules” to use. I have also noticed that it’s the 20- and 30- somethings that are the rudest!

  3. That’s an interesting thought. After asking my husband if he’s noticed any particular age group, he said this behavior seems to cross all age groups. We’ll have to make a mental note of any common traits of these sidewalk monopolizers our next time out. I’ll be sure to bring my notepad and pen with me! Thanks, Ginger!

  4. You know what really grinds my gears? People that don’t know the difference between then and than. Drives me nuts. I’m not even a grammar nerd…but for some reason it really drives me nuts when I see a facebook status like this – “Going to class, than the gym, than the library, than out to dinner with my besties!” Ugh, I think I just threw up in my mouth.

    • Well said, Mike. It’s so refreshing to hear someone defend correct grammar. Is this bad habit an indictment of our educational system or just plain laziness? Keep up the good fight and, please, don’t throw up in your mouth! Don’t go their. Thanks for letting us know your pet peeve!

  5. I have some pet peeves lolllll….
    people who open their door in traffic, especially when unloading children..
    people who don’t say thank you when you hold the door open for them..
    all criminals period….
    people who break in and speak with someone you’re already having a conversation with…..
    those drivers who insist on tail gating
    DUI drivers…take a cab idiot
    I could go on and maybe will later ….lol

    • Wow, some really great examples of irritating and rude behavior! I don’t think anyone could ever defend them, but it’s interesting to note that, in my opinion, many of the worst offenders probably wouldn’t even see themselves in that list. I hate when I’m at the grocery store on a busy day & people just leave their carts in the middle of the aisle for everyone to have to manuever around. Is that against the law? Because it should be. Hey, don’t be shy about filling us in on the rest of your peeves! Thanks, Chuck

  6. Brian

    What really grinds my gears is when I am driving and someone cuts me off and THEN goes 10mph under the speed limit. If you have the gall to cut me off the least you can do is get your butt up to speed, especially when, if they would’ve waited 5 seconds, they could’ve pulled out behind me and gone as slowly as their little heart desires. And that is what grinds my gears.

    • I KNOW! I hate that, especially when I look in my rearview mirror & there’s not another car in sight, but that person HAD to pull out right in front of me. I guess that’s why it’s so important to keep a safe distance from the car ahead – so you can safely react when people around you do stupid, dangerous things. Just check Chuck’s comment earlier for a great example: people who open their car doors into traffic, sometimes with kids in tow. AAARRRRGGGGGHHHH

  7. Kathy

    One of my pet peeves is people who don’t say thank you. These people are the same ones who hog the sidewalk. You open the door for them and hold it while they go in with their strollers and kids in tow and never even acknowledge you. I often say “your welcome” to people like this and they look at me like I have 2 heads. Don’t I know they are entitled and don’t have to say “Thank you”?

  8. OMG, I know!!!! It’s just like when I’m at the grocery store and have to scoot past someone who is looking at the shelves and I say, “Excuse me” with a smile and an expression that clearly says, “Sorry, I don’t mean to be blocking your view of the Corn Flakes” as I hurry by, and NOTHING. Not any sort of acknowledgement at all. Makes me CRAZY!!!!! Why can’t everyone else be more like us – right?

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