Have you ever considered during the course of a waking day just how much there is out there to irritate you? Maybe it hadn’t crossed your mind. It hadn’t mine until today. I thought I would provide you with just a selection of thought provoking instances that happened to me today. I offer a suggestion that you will agree with at least one of them.
1. Last piece of paper
The first annoyance of the day, less than five minutes after I got up and out of bed. A trip to the bathroom and just at the point of no return, a realisation that there is only one sheet of toilet tissue left on the roll with the replacement rolls stored in the cupboard across the way. Who in their right mind leaves one sheet of paper for the next person? What purpose does it serve exactly? I won’t go into further detail on this one.
2. Bus Fares
At what point does it come as a shock to someone waiting at a bus stop that they will at some point have to pay for their fare?
The bus was running at least five minutes late this morning, so anyone waiting will have had plenty of time to prepare themselves for its impending arrival, but no. I didn’t just count one I counted three people who, once boarding the bus, then had to rifle around in their handbag to locate their purse. Once found, they then had to seek to produce the money. Fumbling around to gather their change, they seemed to think it appropriate to strike up a conversation with the driver.
“Ooh aren’t these coins so fiddly? If you wait a minute I’ll get the change exactly right for you. I bet you get this all this time don’t you”, and other such inane drivel. Do they not realise that the bus is running to a timed schedule and can they not hear the rest of the passengers grumbling their discontent?
3. Cash machines
I know there are various elements of the ATMs, cash machines, holes in the wall whatever you choose to call them that irk some people. The one thing that really gets me annoyed is waiting an incessantly long time for my turn even when there are only two people in front of me in the queue. No matter how long I think about it and believe me I had more than long enough time standing in line today, I simply cannot fathom what on earth people find to do at them that takes so long.
This may be going a bit far, but I did actually time myself today: insert card; wait for machine to register card; enter pin number; request balance; select another service i.e. cash; enter cash amount required; retrieve card; await cash; await receipt. Job done and all with a total time of 48 seconds.
4. Wrongly labelled shelves
At lunchtime I made a quick dash into the supermarket. I only wanted a large bottle of lemonade, but got slightly distracted by one of their Buy One Get One Free (BOGOF) offers. I fell for it and bought the product(s).
Once I got to the self service checkout (mini rant on its way) I noticed that the special offer had not been deducted. Luckily there was an assistant nearby who, eventually offered her help. Upon her return she advised me that the label DIRECTLY BENEATH said item was for another brand situated further up the shelf! I declined the product. It was only because I only had one other item that I noticed. If this had formed part of my regular weekly shop, they would have got away with charging me full price for 2 items that I didn’t actually want or need in the first place and I wouldn’t have noticed.
5. Self service checkouts
Since when did these save time? Save time for whom? The way I see it is that they save time in recruiting new staff members. They have never saved me time.
Take today for example. I had 3 items. I wanted to place them directly into my bag once I had scanned them. The bag which is placed over my shoulder has to be removed and placed on the special bag platform on the checkout. An additional unnecessary manoeuvre which added time to the process. The items (as mentioned above) were not showing the price I expected. I pressed the cancel button, re-scanned, found myself questioning the machine – I did, I actually said, “so what happens – do you deduct the offer price when I proceed to pay?” It didn’t answer. The lady behind the till would have done.
There is a time and a place for these items. My life is not the time – where I go is not the place!