Sunday, February 26, 2017

That Left is Not Alright

I am leaving work Friday evening and heading to the gym.  I go to the end of the street where I plan to go right (north) on 19th Avenue.  Unfortunately, I am stuck behind a DOPE (doesn't operate properly in the environment) who is attempting to make a left-hand turn (south) on 19th Avenue.

19th Avenue is a major north-south surface street in Phoenix.  Because of the number of mountains, there are only a few surface streets that go all the way north and south.  This means that these streets, like 19th Avenue, are VERY busy at rush hour.

So back to the DOPE.  

He is attempting to make a left across 3 busy lanes of northbound traffic, a center turn lane, and then into the closest of the 3 busy southbound lanes.

This is a bad idea.  Aside from the fact that it will take a long time, it is dangerous as hell.  I don't know the statistics on the number of accidents that occur because of poor judgment on left-hand turns.  I thought about making up a statistic but decided that this is the grumpy old man blog, not the BS'ing old man blog.

Anyway, making a left turn across that many lanes of speeding rush hour traffic is a really dumb idea.  

Better ideas:  

1.  Make a right then find a place to safely make a left across 19th Avenue and re-enter 19th Avenue going south.  

2.  Go around the block and go one block south to a street that has a light at 19th Avenue where you can safely make a left hleft-handon a green light.

In any case, Grumpy Impatient Old Man (me) got frustrated, backed up a few feet, turned into the parking lot of a nearby establishment and went north from that establishment.  Though tempted, I did not flip the bird at the DOPE who was still waiting to make the left.  For all I know, he is probably still there.

- Grumpy Old Man

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

The Time, Please!

When you talk to me, I am interested in hearing what you have to say.  Well, at least as interested as a grumpy old man can be in someone who is not giving me food, money or sex.   But, please be respectful. Get to the point.   I may not have that much time left and I can't spend it listening to you ramble incessantly.

You remind me of the saying,

I ask you what time it is and you tell me how to build a watch.

I don't need to build a watch.  Just tell me the damn time!

Thank you.

Grumpy Old Man

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Pedestrians - The Right of Way Doesn't Mean You Are Right

The other day I was leaving the supermarket in my vehicle.  A woman was waiting to cross from the store to the parking lot where her car was parked.  Being an easy-going, kind, sympathetic, sensitive, caring type, I waved her across.  I felt that it was safer for her to cross when I was blocking traffic for her.  I didn't expect a Nobel prize for my actions, but it was a nice thing to do.

I expected her to cross directly across the lane and then proceed to her vehicle.  Instead, she took a long diagonal path directly to her vehicle, remaining in the vehicle path for some 50 yards or so.

Aside from inconveniencing and delaying Mr. Patience (me), she put herself in harm's way for a greater distance and time than was necessary.   We all know there are many pedestrian-involved accidents in parking lots and this DOPE (doesn't operate properly in the environment) is a good example of why this occurs.
Pedestrian hit in parking lot

I will spell it out for any DOPEs reading.  When you are in a parking lot, cross directly across the traffic in the shortest path possible.  This would be perpendicular though that term may be beyond most DOPE's comprehension.  Once you have crossed the traffic path, proceed on the side of the parking lane to your vehicle.  Do not remain exposed in the path of traffic.  Do not block or impede vehicles.  The additional risk is not worth saving 30 seconds and 30 steps.

If someone is kind enough to let you pass, get out of their way quickly and efficiently.   Pedestrians may have the right of way, but if you get injured, the right of way won't make the pain go away.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Einstein Was Right

Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former.

-  Albert Einstein      

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Your Screaming Kid is Not So Cute

Hey Mom!  Hey Dad!  How about a little courtesy and a little good judgment?  Your kid running and screaming at the park is no problem.  The same behavior at a restaurant when others are trying to enjoy their dinner is rude and inconsiderate.

When our kids were small I was very sympathetic to this.  I knew that the other customers had worked hard for their money and wanted to enjoy a pleasant dinner without someone else's (mine) kids ruining it.  If one of my kids went into butthead mode, they were out of there in no time flat.

I wish others were this considerate.

If your kids can't sit down and shut up when dining out, please go to Peter Piper Pizza.  They will love to see you and I will love to see you leave.

PS - Here is an article about like-minded restaurant owner who had to walk back his comments because of all the unreasonable people out there:

- Grumpy Old Man

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Hang Up the Damn Phone!

I am in the gym, minding my own business, pedaling like crazy and rocking out to Led Zeppelin.  How is it possible that I can hear the DOPE two bikes over talking on his phone?

Dude, we are not in your living room.  We are not in your office.   Who the hell do you think you are?   How can you possibly be so rude, so inconsiderate and so clueless?

If your wife or kid calls and it's an emergency, ok.  Other than that, if you have to answer the phone, you have exactly 2 acceptable options:

1.  Tell the caller you can't talk and you will call them back, or 

2.  Get your DOPE ass off the bike and go find a quiet corner where you won't be disturbing me or anyone else.

Now all I can do is turn Zep up from too loud to deafening.   If I was 30 years younger, I would not take it so well.  I would go stand uncomfortably close to the DOPE and act interested in every word.   When he made a comment, I would tell him that his conversation is so interesting I didn't want to miss a single thrilling word.  I would advise him that he is a real DOPE:  Don't Operate Properly in the Environment.   In my mind, I am doing you a real service, though it is possible the DOPE may not feel the same way.

One further comment.  Why is it the DOPEs who use their phone so inappropriately have the loudest voices? 

- Grumpy Old Man

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Grumpy Old Man's Favorite Driving Quote

Have you ever noticed that anybody driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster than you is a maniac?

       - George Carlin (the world's cleverest and most beloved grumpy old man)

Monday, February 13, 2017

Hey, You Called Me!

Has this ever happened to you?    

I am hard at work in full concentration.  The phone rings.  Being a kind, warm, sensitive, caring person, I stop what I am doing, pick up the phone and say, "Hello, this is Andrew Greess, How may I help you?".

I am met with silence.  Then fumbling.  Then someone finally mumbles, "um, hello?"

I can't bear it any longer and lose it.  I scream something then slam the phone down.

Are you kidding me?  You called me.  How dare you not be prepared?  This is an outrage. Aside from the fact you interrupted me to sell me something I don't want, you have the unmitigated gall to be waste more of my time with your amateurish lack of preparation?

It is not just the 30 seconds it took me to realize you are a DOPE (don't operate properly in the environment).  I have to go back to my work, recollect my thoughts and figure out where I left off. You probably wasted more like 5 minutes of my time.

If you are going to interrupt someone, the least you can do is be a professional, be prepared and be ready to spew your BS when I answer the phone.

- Grumpy Old Man

Thursday, February 9, 2017

What? You Mean I Have to Pay?

In a long line at the grocery store or other merchant.   Some many DOPEs and so many reasons for Grumpy Old Man to get grumpier.  Let's make a list:

Hey, Ms. Store Manager, can't you see there's a line of customers waiting to give you money?  Get another cashier out here instead of drinking coffee in the breakroom and talking about American Idol.

Hey, Mrs. Customer, I understand your friendly outgoing nature.  But buy a clue.  Can't you see a long line of customers behind you waiting to check out?  Give us a break.  Don't slow up the line with your lame ramblings about your boring life.  Get through the line quickly and efficiently.  If you need to spew verbal diarrhea that badly, stop a homeless person on the street and yap at them.  Don't impact me.

Hey Mr. Cashier, Can't you see there's a line at your register?  Does that matter to you?   We know your company's lame mission statement espouses some meaningless drivel about friendly service. But excessively friendly service with every customer slows the line and results in poorer service.   Pay attention.  Adapt.  Serve.

And now the Pièce De Résistance,  the primary reason for this post and the bane of my existence.

Drum roll. please.  

Mrs. Customer, you have been standing in front of me for 10 minutes.  You have
endured the same line.  You have watched and heard the chatty customers and the slow cashier.  You are over the age of 5 so you know how a store works.  Why then, you Queen of all Dopes, you dumbest of the dumb, are you surprised when the cashier asks you for payment?

I've been standing here too long already, and now I have to wait longer while you fumble through your purse for the payment you should have had in your hand.  Arghhhh!!!!!

You've been in a store before.  You've watched the 20 people in front of you in line pay for their purchases.  Did you think your unparalleled beauty (not), your designer K-mart outfit or your stellar 95 IQ would get you your purchases for free?  Come on!  You've been standing in line for 15 minutes.  Have your damn money ready!

- Grumpy Old Man

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

News Flash - Talking is Not Service

Hey! All you young people out there.  Newsflash, just talking is not providing service, it is not solving problems and it is not adding value.                

Bank tellers seem to be the worst culprits.  When I go to the bank to make a deposit, I want a fast, efficient, accurate transaction.  Don't call me buddy.  I am not your buddy.  Even if I wasn't 30 years older than you, I still wouldn't be your buddy.      

I don't want to have a conversation with you.  I especially don't want to have a relationship with you.  Don't ask me how my day is going.  It is none of your business.

If you have some sort of personality defect that requires you to move your mouth and emit sounds while you are working, aim it at someone else.  I don't want to hear it.  Listening to your mindless blathering is draining.        

Some particularly clueless young money shufflers keep talking at me even when it is apparent that I am talking on the phone.  Are you blind as well as clueless?

The worst question I am asked is, "Got any big plans for the weekend?"  Are you kidding me?  What a DOPE (Doesn't Operate Properly for the Environment)!

This last question particularly offends me.  The best answer to this question is "it is none of your  #$%@ business!"  I can't say that, so I usually just grunt.  The teller probably thinks I am a grumpy old man. This is not fair.  It takes massive amounts of self-control not to tell them to #$%#$ off!

Instead of thinking I am a jerk, this DOPE ought to be congratulating me on how cool, calm and collected I am in the face of complete cluelessness.

Please do your job efficiently, effectively and quietly.  You will have my eternal, unuttered thanks!

Grumpy Old Man

Get Out of My Way

This is so obvious I can't believe it needs to be said (written).   If you are driving in the left lane, and there is someone behind you, then GET THE HELL OUT OF THE WAY!  The left lane is for passing.  Slower traffic keep right.                              

It doesn't matter if you are doing the speed limit.  Get out of the way.

It is your responsibility as a driver to be aware of traffic conditions around you.  This means you not only need to know what is in front of you, but also, what is behind you and to both sides of you.  If this is too much for you to handle, call a cab or stay home.

Don't be a DOPE (Doesn't Operate Properly in the Environment).  Get the out of my way.  

- Grumpy Old Man