We all have those little annoyances. Things that aren’t really a big deal, and shouldn’t bug you but they do. Pet peeves - or pet hates as they are known here in Ireland.
When I’m grumpy, I can write a pretty long list of pet peeves... People who say “literally” when what they mean is not literal. People who sit next to you on public transportation even when there are other seats available. When something I've been into for a long time becomes popular. People who scuff their feet as they walk down the street, especially if they’re wearing UGGs. Passive aggressive cc’ing on emails. People who don’t know how to get through airport security efficiently. It’s been 15 years. You know you have to take your goddamn shoes off and can’t have liquids and get your computer out of your bag.
1) Dog poop everywhere. What gives? I know the Irish are linked with faeries but seriously; there is no poo fairy.
Sure, we’ve all forgotten a bag or occasionally had a dog with a hyperactive bowel and run out of bags during a walk but this is everywhere. Folks who drive around Sligo may not have noticed it but as a sidewalk user in this fair town, it’s a minefield. In my opinion, there are two standard safety rules for sidewalks: 1) If you have an umbrella, you can’t also use the store awning for cover (and please keep the pokey bits of your umbrella away of my eyes); and, 2) pick up your dog’s poop so I can text and walk without incident. Am I wrong in believing that everyone knows they are supposed to pick up after their dogs? It’s just good pet-tiquette.
At first, I thought perhaps this is just a foible of rural(er) life, people think “hey, there’s lots of space... no one will notice” but one friend shared that she’d love to let her boys roll in the sand dunes perched over the beach at Strandhill, but there was so much poo nestled in the grass that it was too risky. Topography in my childhood was constantly assessed on the basis of its suitability for climbing to the top and rolling back down. Can you imagine missing out on the dizzy feeling of logrolling down a hill? Moral of the story: dog poo is robbing children of their childhood.
2) What's most likely to be stolen from Irish pharmacies? Fake tan would be my guess. Personally, I don’t get the Irish’s obsession with fake tanner - the smell, the streaks, the effort, and all to look a boiled tinge of orange?
Case in point: Imagine a teenage girl traipsing around Tesco in her uniform after school. Innocent enough. But her hands and face were akin to the color of hospital walls (PANTONE 77-8C to be precise) and the gap between her skirt and knee socks was terracotta. It was like a game of Critteros (the mix-n-match animal game) and we created a horrible beast that was part orangutan and part swan. Scary.
Mirror, mirror on the wall. Who’s the fairest of them all? The Irish. While the pale Celtic complexion is much coveted abroad, the Irish seem in to have a love/hate relationship with their porcelain skin. As a fellow glow-in-the-dark person who is prone to outburst of lobster, I completely understand that imperfections are more noticeable on fairer skin... but c’mon, with your lily-white skin, you look like an ice princess. You are Elsa from Frozen. Own it.
3) Irish radio is the worst. I mean it is so mind-numbingly bad that it threatens to tear at the very fabric of space/time. The hosts prattle uselessly and forget their role is the music custodian. The music is stale and repetitive, lacking playlist creativity. Don’t get me started on the dreadful listener-participation games. The worst by far is a game where listeners call in to guess the celebrity from a one sec clip of a laugh and if they get it wrong the presenter offers a cheesy quote as consolation prize. Cringe. And then there is “The Club Sandwich” on Friday mornings. I can barely hand the un-cha-un-cha of heavy bass club music after a few cocktails but before lunch is out of the question. After a month of being polite to my co-workers radio desires, I would jump up from whatever I’m doing and run to switch off the radio. (I soon learned they hated it too). Whatever 2fm says, it not the sounds of nation I want part of. I say it’s time to take back the airwaves! Puh-lease!
Rant done. Now that I’ve shared my pet peeves from my four months in Ireland, I’ll bet you’ve started your own list for nitpicking, the endless irritating panoply of infractions... like the grammar errors that are (likely) in this blog post. My apologies!
Nice to meet you...
I'm Andi (hence the blog name). I'm a travel aficionado, passionate eater, tireless explorer of internet rabbit-holes, and amateur thinker. Join me as I give it all up (ok, that's a bit of an exaggeration) and go around the world on a mid-career "soul sabbatical" & year-of-learning to figure out what to be NEXT when I grow up. Won’t you grab a cup of chai and stay a while?
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