I have a confession. Ready? Even though I love the city, the culture, being downtown, local markets, off-the-beaten-path places, etc. etc. etc. – part of me can’t let go of the ‘burbs entirely. After all, I was raised in suburbia. Granted, my parents considered that the ‘Big City’, considering they grew up in a town of 1100, but still… My hometown was in the suburbs. And that’s where I live now, albeit a different suburb of a completely different Big City. Not necessarily by choice – as my blog description tells you – but by situation. The Spouse and I went round and round on that one when we bought our house twelve years ago. I was all for the in-town loft, he wanted the white picket fence just in case we had kids someday.
I’ve always been taught that you shouldn’t talk the talk if you can’t walk the walk. Don’t dish it out if you can’t take it. Can’t remember any other cute little sayings my mom may have used over the years, but you get the idea. And I totally agree. That’s part of being an ethical, honest human being, right? Right. And if you make mistakes, the right thing to do is own it and fix it, right? Right.
I’m a hypocrite.
See, here’s the deal. We all have pet peeves. We do. Even if you don’t think you do – you do. That ONE thing that irritates you more than anything else and will take you to your last nerve if you let it? That’s a pet peeve. And one of my biggest pet peeves is cutters. You know them. Those people who see you heading to the checkout line and make a speedy beeline to get there before you. The ones who are more obvious and just shove in line at the movies. We’ve all seen them. Well, the ones who bug me the most are the drivers. The ones who drive past the ‘lane closed’ sign – the bright orange one – just like you do. But do they move over? No. They whiz on past, waiting until the absolute last inch of available lane and then force their way over in front of you. Do they realize that they are the traffic issue? That they’re the reason the rest of the roadway comes to a complete stop? Maybe. I’m sure some do. Anyhoo, I HATE it. True, strong, self-righteous hate.
I have to duck my head when I say this, but I’ve become one of them.
Not all of the time, mind you. Just sometimes. I used to be militant about following the letter of the law, common sense and unwritten driving courtesy. So much that I almost needed a sign for the top of the car screaming, ‘SEE??! I”M DOING THE RIGHT THING!!’
Not anymore. I’m ducking my head in shame here, but I’ve gotta be honest.
I cut in traffic.
Only in ONE location, during ONE part of my commute, and ONLY in the morning. See? Here I am trying to make it sound better – like I’m not a filthy hypocrite… But I am. I’ll explain… My morning commute averages about 45 minutes. Sometimes less, but sometimes a lot more – like up to an hour and 15 minutes. Seriously. But I’m a mom. I live in the ‘burbs. I can only leave so early – somehow I think the school would complain if I sent my kids to the bus stop an hour early. Or my neighbors would when the early-morning wrestling started down at the corner. So I’m limited on my start time.
Most of the drive is OK. I’m patient and try to be a good citizen, letting people in my lane, etc. But once I get to the bottleneck, all bets are off. There’s one spot on my route that comes to a complete stop. And there’s the dilemma. I could stay in my assigned lane, which is always much slower and longer due to poor planning down the road. I could. And I did for a long time – until I started being late to work. I hate being late. Also, this is a new job, so I’m still building trust, etc. I don’t want to get the ‘late’ label. No way.
So, I move over. Into the faster-moving, non-exit lane. And I creep up on the left, wait for my opportunity and some kindhearted soul who will let me over, and sweep into the correct lane. In front of all the law-abiding citizens who are silently waving their fists at me. But it saves me 10-15 minutes of drive time every day. And for this working mom, that’s a gold mine…
Like I said, this is probably trivial to most of you (or the five of you who read this), but I like to walk the talk. I try, anyway. So I had to be honest and get this off my chest.
Whew! What are your pet peeves??
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