I love a positive attitude. I write blog posts designed to uplift, my Instagram is full of those motivational quotes, and if I use the ‘strong arm’ emoji any more frequently I will actually get strong arms from the effort. I ‘This Girl Can’ and ‘LETS DO THIS’ all over social media. My house is covered in reminders and “sayings”, cushions telling me about my home and my heart, posters shrieking LIVE, LAUGH, LOVE, DAMMIT! Basically, I do my bit for positivity.
This is all a caveat for what I am about to say.
Gripes and grievances are a part of life, and sometimes it is necessary to acknowledge the negatives. There is a difference between relentless bellyaching, and occasionally just having the courage to stand up and say “well this is bullsh*t”, and I admire the latter. I find it brave, I find it can actually be productive and, when delivered in the right way, I find it funny.
I shocked myself to the very core when I fell head over heels for Karl Pilkington’s “Moaning of Life” (the programme, not the man himself, although he does have a fascinatingly shiny bald head). I was addicted to his dry humour and frank observations. It was refreshing and plain funny to watch. Away from my TV, I often find it amusing when people have the nerve to call a spade a spade, with no pretence, and no disclaimer that they must then explain themselves.
There is something to be admired in people who are willing to put their neck on the line and complain. Sometimes it's awkward and everyone looks around them for the nearest tumble-weed, but sometimes it's the beginning of a positive change. Aside from that, it just is more genuine to acknowledge the things that ruffle your feathers. As much as I aim to be positive, my main god is actually honesty, and within honesty there is space for all sentiment.
Sometimes, another person’s whining is as encouraging as their motivational anecdotes, because within that truth you find you are not alone - they hate it too! They think it too! I am not a freak! And who doesn't love a hearty dose of validation?
So, to celebrate the human ability to moan (the humoan™), I have listed some things that have annoyed me lately. Enjoy! Or not. Whatever. I went for unlucky number 13.
(I should also add – if you read your way round my house carefully, you’ll find a mug with “FML” in giant letters, hidden right there at the back. Because FML is sometimes how it feels).
1. Internet Explorer. For the best-known browser in the history of the World Wide Web, it doesn’t half need to catch-up (it does need to).
2. Sexism. Relentless, unrecognised, often subconscious sexism. Should this even be a thing at this point in human life?
3. Is ALL of mobile phone signal getting worse?
4. Girls series 4, when are you going to make it out onto DVD? I almost can’t remember the lead character’s name. Which is my name. HURRY UP!
5. Carrier bags are thinner. Again. I know we’re trying to save money and the planet, but my shopping is all over the high street and that’s my butternut squash on display.
6. When I woke up and I wasn’t Jennifer Lawrence. Again.
7. I DIDN'T MEAN TO GET IN THE WRONG LANE. Roads are hard. If you can't stop tutting at me, would it kill you at least to acknowledge the desperation of my indicator and let me in??
8. This is a two paragraphed moan. Recently, on a train somewhere, a man asked for a sandwich from the trolley. There were no sandwiches on the trolley, only in the buffet bar. The man said to the assistant “okay I’ll walk down and get one”, only to be told ‘2nd class’ passengers aren’t ALLOWED to go and buy food from the buffet bar. They must wait for the trolley. Which doesn’t have sandwiches.
So, to sum up, a paying customer wasn’t permitted to go and buy food which he had the money for, at lunchtime, when he was hungry, because he chose not to pay extortionate fares just to sit in a slightly comfier carriage. He. Was. Livid. And so I was I. I’ve never seen anyone eat a bag of crisps so grudgingly.
9. When did our private lives stop being just that? As a talker, noise-maker and social media pimp, I share a lot. But what I share and when I choose to share it – that’s my prerogative. We don’t have the right to demand to know everything about each other’s lives. So let’s not get so used to information overload that we start to think we’re entitled to it. We’re absolutely not.
10. Chargers, headphones, and batteries. Why you be so rubbish! Thank you Apple for changing the world, but my phone is dead, my charger is frayed and everyone can hear what I’m listening to (and it’s not cool). When are you going to sort all that out?
11. Penny sweets aren’t 1p anymore, and haven't been for some time. So there’s that.
12. Another day, another cult diet. A diet where “alcohol, carbs, fruit and any other vegetables are OFF the menu.” Mmmm NOURISHING. I cannot.
13. That said, a pizza with a hole in is not “low-calorie”, it’s just half of food.