How can you live like this?!

What do other people seem to accept as part of life that you personally cannot tolerate?

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Litterbugs. Just the other night, as I was driving past a bus stop, I watched a woman who was drinking from a fast food cup just toss it into the street. She was standing right next to a trash can. Makes me wonder what kind of pig sty her home is.


Honestly? Bullying.

I think you’ll find that capricious, powerful bullies, especially those getting their comeuppance are a regularly pilloried baddie on the bbs.

Think about how wild the discussion was, especially on Reddit, when the United debacle went down. I think maybe half of the top 25 threads were on the topic.

Everyone, pretty much, has experienced it during their lives and I guess we become fairly inured to the experience as we grow older, “dignity comes from within” and all that, so encountering bullies in later life is never as debilitating as when we were younger, but I for sure feel that same, deep hatred of the behaviour that I used to feel as a kid, when I see it perpetrated against others.


mobile devices.

i have never owned one and cannot imagine paying a monthly fee for the “privilege” of carrying around a tracking device which connects me to work, irritating acquaintances, and distractions on a 24/7 basis. having a conversation with a mobile device user is like having a conversation with an unmedicated 6th grader with severe adhd (something i am forced to do on a tragically regular basis as part of my profession).

as a side note i will mention that when people have long conversations with me several of my interlocutors have commented on how flattered and awed they were by the focus and attention i gave to them as we talked. only a couple of them realized it was because i never used a mobile device.


Sharing walls with people (i.e. living in an apartment). I get intense anxiety from neighbor noise. Music is tough, but footsteps [ETA: heavy heeled or in clunky shoes] are worse. We also have a downstairs neighbor with access to a garden (little concrete-walled alley under our bedroom and living room windows) that is essentially a sound- and grill-smoke- chimney into our tiny abode. I’m pretty distractable generally, and constant thumping and talking scrambles my brain. If I can’t keep my thoughts straight, I end up very irritable, short tempered and aimless. The sleep interruptions of moving furniture late at night and early morning makes me borderline homicidal.

Also fucking radiator heating. WTF with this 18th century bullshit.

If planners of society expect us all to live in cities, they need to do something about these issues. My dreams of a little, quiet house in the country are the only things keeping me sane.


I think you may be confusing correlation with causation there (and extrapolating wildly from one example).

I had problems keeping focus and attention long before I ever used a mobile device.


ETA: somebody’s “How Can You Live Like This?!” has to be animated GIFs in threads…


I’d hate the country house @HMSGoose longs for. I love being just minutes from whatever I need in the city, and when I hear footsteps in the hall, I hear $$$, since we own the building. Plenty of people couldn’t stand their family of 4 living in 1200 sq ft, but that’s the tradeoff.

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I have a friend whose spouse completely runs my friend’s life. My friend can do nothing without spouse’s consent, and even after spouse gives consent, it’s still an even bet that spouse will cancel friend’s plans at the last minute.


Even if the push-style notifications are disabled, I can’t abide having all those separate apps for various things installed on my phone. (especially social sites) I mean, my phone has a modern web browser that can emulate a computer in javascript. It’s way too easy to let a third party influence if not dictate what one might do with their idle thought. (edit: it’s mind control!)

Apps that actually have a unique purpose like an instrument tuner or two-factor authentication are totally great, though.


People who litter just drive me nuts. Every few weeks, we put a trailer on the back of a four wheeler and go through the National Forest trails near us to pick up bottles and trash. It amazes me that people will go to the trouble of going out into a more or less pristine wilderness, and just throw trash everywhere.


“white” lights that are actually different colour temperatures:

Seems like every institution everywhere just replaces bulbs with whatever colour temperature is cheapest. Annoys me enough to comment on it every time I see it (yes, I’m sure my partner hates to hear about it by now).


Agreed, with the addendum:
People who don’t think cigarette butts are litter.


Ooh! Ooh!

Especially this!

I know it’s not universal, but in my experience, an appalling percentage of smokers have a cognitive blind-spot to the existence of that cigarette butt, once they’ve taken their last drag from it and put it out. It is as if it vanishes from their perception.


Lack of common social grace. I like to think I’m a pretty easygoing person where others are concerned, but when I’m sitting around with people and someone pulls out one of those little toothpick/flossers and starts flossing their teeth while we’re talking, or casually starts picking off a scab, or exploring a swollen pimple, I want to scream holy crap go in the bathroom and do that for godsake but I know that’d make me “the hysterical guy who makes things awkward”. So I try to look elsewhere and grit my teeth.


The myriad ways that our conveniences and comforts are built on the enforced inconvenience, discomfort, and often misery of others.

(Even though I “tolerate” it too, to some extent.)


It’s all about using it selectively. Without a mobile phone, I would be tied to the house constantly, unable to leave, waiting for the house phone to ring or emails to arrive on my computer. With a cell phone, I can send or receive emails and calls anywhere I go, freeing me up to do my work anytime or anyplace I wish. And if I don’t wish to, I can turn it off. There’s no 24/7 about it; you’re entirely in control.

That said, it’s become bizarrely acceptable socially to just whip out a phone and start playing games, reading Facebook or Tumblr, or check messages during the middle of meals at restaurants, while watching movies, or playing games with friends. I have friends who think nothing of playing a video game on their iPhone while playing a board game, and when it’s their turn, they have no idea what’s going on. I don’t know why anyone tolerates this, but it drives me bonkers.


i’m not really tied to my phone. i exist as people existed for decades before smartphones became so common. i have an answering machine on my phone at home. i have a phone at work. i’ve memorized the locations of the 4 still-functioning payphones in the town where i live plus the 3 in the town i work, along with the 2 on the drive i take to go between them. i accept that i am going to miss calls and i just deal with it. i feel remarkably nondeprived.


I vainly try and tell my kids that watching a movie means WATCHING THE MOVIE, not glancing up at it occasionally from their phone when it looks interesting. So much film is about the framing, pacing and spaces, not the action.


That’s the thing – I’m a freelancer who works from home, so I don’t have that separation of “work” and “life”. In my previous life working in an office, I could say well, I’ve got my work phone, and folks can reach me there, and after that, well, it can wait 'til tomorrow, g’night. But in my situation, being able to be agile and work when and where I need to is what keeps me from being stuck 24/7 with a housephone as my work tether. Different situations for different people and needs!