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Gym Awkwardness March 8, 2010

Filed under: other,rant — lexd @ 5:18 pm
Tags: , , ,

I was thinking the other day that a post on gym awkwardness was long due. Although I thought it might be less timely now that a lot of the New Years Resolution gym rats are either dropping off or learning the ropes, it’s become pretty clear to me that you don’t need to be a newbie to do some pretty stupid/rude stuff.

  • I know it’s none of my business, but when someone is on the cardio machines or sitting on one of the weight benches on their cell phone, it drives me nuts. And, I’m not talking about an urgent call, or to their kids or significant other … I’m talking about an unnecessarily loud “… and then you know what SHE said? She said I was out of line! And then he came over and got in the way and blahblahblahblah…” It should be noted that I feel this way about these conversations in just about every public space: the bus, the checkout line at the grocery store, while shopping at Old Navy. Please, talk more quietly.
  • I can only speak for the ladies on this topic, but not once have I ever met a girl who enjoyed being hit on at the gym. I know sometimes women get all dolled up at the gym (sorority girls in college … I am looking at you), but unless you’re getting eye flirtation, smiles and the usual signals from a woman, don’t go there unless you have a legitimate reason. Some of us (most of us, from what I can tell) go there to work up a sweat and get in better shape, feel better, etc. We don’t go there to get picked up. A friend of mine said the same guy hit on her two days in a row … using the same line, as she was on the same machine. Just no.
  • WIPE OFF YOUR DAMN MACHINE. Enough said.
  • Please follow the instructions for getting into classes — this goes for newbies and for veterans. Newbies: You probably didn’t know that you need to get a pass from the front desk to get into a lot of classes. It’s a space issue (and for classes like spinning, an availability issue). Go once, and after the obligatory speech from the instructor ensues, now you know. Learn from it. Get a f*&$ing pass. Veterans: I know you’ve been coming to the Wednesday evening spinning class for 8 months. You have the special spinning shorts and shoes. You know the instructor personally. YOU STILL NEED A F*&#ING PASS TO SIT ON A BIKE. (GOD this one really gets to me. If I have a pass, I should have a spot in the class)

I think I hit on my biggest offenders, although there are certainly others (seriously, Google “gym pet peeves” if you’re bored). Did I miss any important ones?

image from icanhascheezburger

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Some words on food service March 2, 2010

Filed under: other,rant — lexd @ 4:51 pm
Tags: , , , ,

I read a lot on the Internet. I read a lot of blogs, including Consumerist and Serious Eats, to name a couple.

A topic that comes up fairly regularly on both these sites is some aspect of food service/dining out. I usually have an opinion on these topics, having spent years in a variety of food service venues (chain to high-end dining).

Yesterday Consumerist posted a story from a reader who walked out on a $90 tab after a horrendous restaurant experience.

While I don’t think the reader and his party were justified in walking (more on that later), it was actually the comments section that struck a chord more than anything else. As I read comments from people who suggested anything other than speaking with the manager about adjusting the bill, not leaving a tip and then not coming back, I was shocked. One person said they responded to sub-par restaurant experiences by writing about their displeasure — on the table — in ketchup and mustard. Passive-aggressive, much?

Look, you have to consider who you are really punishing with your actions. Most of the time, you’re not making an impact with the entity that really matters: THE RESTAURANT.

  • No tip: This should mean you didn’t like the service. In nearly all of the restaurants I worked at, the servers don’t tip out the kitchen staff, so not tipping because you didn’t like the food accomplishes nothing. You not tipping only hurts the server … who usually has to tip out a certain percentage of their sales to the bartender, expo and bussers (not a certain percentage of their tips.)  If you didn’t like the food? Talk to your server or a manager.
  • Messing up the table, etc: The only person you are hurting here is the busser (maybe the server or hostess depending on how the restaurant is run). And really, most bussers I’ve worked with have been very nice, hardworking people. They haul ass because bussers are fairly easy to replace. A lot is asked of them, and their action is often required in less than 30 seconds. The manager and the owner certainly don’t clean the tables, and they’re often the ones making the decisions regarding how the restaurant is run. Why are you punishing the busser?
  • Filling out a comment card: I’m guilty of this one on the server side. If you fill this out and give it to anyone BUT a manager, it’s not getting there. Just sayin’.
  • Verbally abusing restaurant staff: You may scoff at this one and call me dramatic, but take your shenanigans elsewhere unless you’ve worked in a restaurant. It happens far more often than people think. While it’s never acceptable to say hurtful things to anyone, being mean or yelling at a server accomplishes nothing. Why? Besides the human instinct to avoid abuse, if you’ve reached this level, we already know we’re not getting a tip. Anything above basic service is wasted on your table. It’s not very fair, but it’s economically sound. 
  • Walking on a check: This is probably the most misguided retaliation method. As one person in the comments of the Consumerist article pointed out, the OP probably wasn’t hurting the restaurant with that move. He screwed the server big time, because servers are generally expected to cover walk-outs with their own money. Another commenter asks if this is legal — I have no idea. But it’s common practice. As they get tables, servers create “tables” on a POS (point of service) system where they input your orders, cash people out, etc. Those tables are under the server’s name. At the end of a shift, they are responsible for anything under their name. If you walk on that $90 tab? Yep, it’s still open under their name, and the restaurant holds them accountable. It sucks, and it’s why servers have been known to chase people out the door.

In closing, what should the OP at Consumerist have done? It may have been a pain in the ass, but get with the manager to get the check fixed. The manager may even have comped something (either to try and amend the situation, or just to get them out the door … sometimes the latter is just easier). If the manager didn’t handle the adjustment well, write a letter to the owner, or put a call in during a non-busy time (usually between 9 and 10, or between 3 and 4) to speak to the owner. Leave a bad review on Yelp, UrbanSpoon, whatever.

Just think about how far your actions actually go towards creating the change that you want.

image by discoverdupage

image by poiseon bild&text

 

Driving douchebaggery May 4, 2009

Filed under: other,rant — lexd @ 3:22 pm
Tags: ,

I know, it’s been forever since I blogged. Truth be told, I’ve been writing a lot at work, and by the time I set aside some time for blogging, I’m damn-near out of words. 

That being said, there’s a lot I have to write about, including recent gaming sessions (Devil May Cry 4, Rayman 2, Rock Band and Guitar Hero); the ridiculous way the entire world is reacting to the swine flu (and the gross mishandling of it by the media); some family stuff; books I’m reading; and why I could read The Undomestic Goddess  cover to cover (as I did Saturday) every day and never get sick of it. 

I have some new pet peeves that I’ve discovered, but I’ve come to the conclusion that my abundance of driving pet peeves (which these new ones are) might make me look like I think I am the perfect driver … which, I assure you, I am not. I drive WAY too fast (even for Florida’s standards), I am unnecessarily aggressive (read: intentionally boxing people out when they try to pass me on the right), I have what could be considered clinical road rage, I don’t always signal, and on and on.

I think what irrates me most, though, is driving douchebaggery: People taking an action they know will inconvenience other drivers, and not giving a rat’s ass about it. 

“But wait,” you say. “You just admitted to a) not signaling and b) purposefully preventing people from passing you, you hypocrite!” 

In response, I always signal in traffic (when it’s important for other drivers to know what I’m doing), and my tendency to block other drivers from passing me on the right only happens in traffic — and, it’s reactive to their passing-on-the-right douchebaggery. In 99% of cases where there is no traffic and I see someone coming up fast, I will move to the right. If there’s traffic? Screw you, I’m not getting stuck in the right lane so you can be 6 ft. closer to your goal. 

So, the newest in pet peevitude:

  • When someone pulls out in front of me and cuts me off … and there is NOBODY BEHIND ME. This happens so often in Florida, I’m surprised I haven’t had an aneyurism yet. If there’s heavy traffic, and there appears to be a break in front of my car, I’ll be annoyed, but I understand. Nobody wants to wait, trying to turn out of Publix, for 20 minutes after a long day at work. BUT, if I am the only car on the road, God help you. You SERIOUSLY couldn’t wait 10 seconds? I’m speeding, I promise it won’t take that long for me to pass!
  • When someone cuts you off in traffic and then slows down. I saw a girl flip her car into the median a few months back because some stupid driver in a tiny black sportscar did this. The roof of her car was crushed. I was terrified, and called 911. I hate people who do this. 
  • When people drive below the speed limit in the right lane a mile or more before their exit. I see this all the bloody time on I-4 and the 417. Your exit is coming up, but you are still on the freeway, and the speed limit is still 65. Please do not slow down until you are actually in an exit lane, or on the off-ramp. You jam everyone up, including the people entering the freeway in said right lane. It’s awful hard to merge into traffic at 40 mph. 
  • Also, people who enter the freeway at 40 mph. Flow of traffic in Florida is generally at least the speed limit, if not 10-15 mph over. If you are one of the people who insists that this is not a problem, please spend some time with this traffic simulator, and marvel at how you are screwing with the flow of traffic without even knowing it. 

 

Moar Pet Peeves April 21, 2009

Filed under: other,rant — lexd @ 6:21 pm
Tags: , ,

Yes, more pet peeves to add to the list:

  • When people create videos/vlogs/anything visual, and they start it with themselves doing something, pretending not to see the camera. Then, they look up, startled, and say something like, “Oh, hello! I didn’t see you there!” THIS IS THE MOST UNORIGINAL OPENING OF ALL TIME
  • When people misspell “quiet” as “quite.” I never know if it’s intentional, like, do they know the difference between the words? This is not a homonym, these are two different WORDS. For some reason, this typo really grinds my gears more than others. 

  • When people use dictionary definitions to a) start a paper or blog post or email or whatever … or, to try and prove a point. I can read, I know how to use a dictionary, and for the most part, I do not engage on a topic unless I’m pretty sure what everything means. You are boring when you revert to someone else’s words to explain something. 
  • You know when a song is playing, and then (usually in movies), it slows down like whatever playing the music is breaking? For whatever reason, that noise is terrifying to me. I think it’s the after-effects of playing BioShock. And yes, it’s a pet peeve that this freaks me out.
  • Micro-managing. Do not do it to me, or you will incur my wrath. I really do like to help others, so if you ask me to do something, odds are I’ll drop whatever I’m doing to help you. Standing over my desk or paging/emailing me every 5 minutes is not going to expedite this process. Luckily, this doesn’t happen often at all at work right now (seriously, I’m pretty lucky). 
  • Discovered this the other day: People who will not pick a speed while driving make me crazy. Please, please please please just pick a speed. Please. 
  • This one is pretty specific, but I hate it when non-kitchen things are left in the kitchen. BF will drop off wallet, keys, mail, tie etc on the counter next to where I’m making dinner, get mad if I try to move them, and then get pissed when he realizes they are now dirty/oil spattered/salted/whatever. Dude, it’s the kitchen. There’s serious work commencing. 

That’s all for now, I suppose. FOR NOW.

 

Pet Peeves (this is long overdue) March 17, 2009

Filed under: other,rant — lexd @ 9:33 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

As an ode to one of my most favorite ranting web sites EVER (I think it says something that the last post was 3 years ago and I STILL love it), “Things I Hate,” I’ve been  meaning to create a “pet peeves” post for quite some time. I haven’t decided if I’ll just come back and edit it, or if I should just create new posts when pet peeves arise (because I’m not one of those people who has like 5 … I have about 39029084390184319). We’ll see. Maybe I’ll preface pet peeves posts (tee hee p’s) with “PP.” At least then I can include relevant lolcat photos for each post. 

It should be noted that I have a lot of driving pet peeves.

  • People who staunchly, STAUNCHLY refuse to get out of the left lane on the freeway, even if they are only going the speed limit. I’m glad you think you are going fast enough, but get out of my way. I want to go faster.
  • People who stop when there is no stop sign, and then have the nerve to look at you all exasperated as you wait (at your REAL stop sign) for them to figure it out. This really seems to be a problem at malls down here in Orlando, especially Seminole Town Center and the Oviedo Marketplace. 

  • Onlooker delays. Need I say more? WTF if I get rear-ended I will chase you.
  • People who don’t wipe their mouths after taking a messy bite, and instead try to lick the remnants of their food off of their faces. Seriously, who are these people? Were they brought up by wolves?
  • People who brag about how much they drink. I know I’ve been over this, but it wasn’t that cool in college, and it’s definitely not cool now that we’re older. In college, you had the “I’m in college” excuse. Now? You’re just pathetic.

  • The words, “I’m just being honest.” That is such a passive-aggressive, bullshit cop-out for saying something that offended someone. Not everyone cares about honesty. Have some fucking tact. GOD! Need an example in action? Check out Ramona from the Real Housewives of New York. I want to poke her bug-eyes out every time she pulls this garbage. Also, my bf has been guilty of this in the past. Honesty is not noble. 
  • People who actually go 25 through toll booths. I know it’s the law, but it seriously cramps the style of people like moi who drive older cars that take FOREVER to get back up to speed. 
  • People who claim they can’t cook. Yes, you can. I promise. “Cooking” does not always have to be stuffed scallops, souffle, mayo from scratch, or anything else super complicated. “Cooking” might just be spaghetti and meatballs. Just because you failed making something ONE TIME IN THE PAST does not mean you are doomed to a life of culinary fail whale. Fucking try again!

  • Failure to know the difference between homonyms. I distinctly remember learning the difference between “two” “too” and “to,” “your” and “you’re,” and my personal favorite, “their” “there” and “they’re” in FIRST FUCKING GRADE. My teacher made us write them on notecards, with the definition on the back, put them on a metal ring that we kept in our desk, and we studied them for five minutes a day. Grammar is not rocket science. It SHOCKS me the amount of educated people I interact with who are not aware of these differences. Even worse are the ones who try and argue with me about it. I will die on this hill BECAUSE I KNOW I AM RIGHT. Lolcats are the lone exception.
  • People who ask the same question repeatedly. I understand that people forget. I am one of the most forgetful person I know. But when you ask me the same question every week over a three month period … AND I answer it in writing every time (the last time titled “DON’T DELETE THIS LOGIN INFORMATION”)? Yeah, I’m going to just start fucking with you at that point. Too personal?
  • How I am always the most sober person at parties. This is kind of a two-fer … I hate having to take care of selfish, drunk douchebags, but I also don’t want to drink myself under the table just to avoid having to take care of them. That is a no-win. I hate being responsible for the well-being of selfish people. 
  • How my computer freezes up or goes SUPER SLOW right when I need it to be normal or fast for 2.5 seconds. This usually happens when a reporter or client is on the phone, or if my boss(es) page me out of nowhere looking for an answer. 

  • People who still insist on sending attachments larger than 10M without letting you know first, and who DON’T GET IT. You are a huge company, and it really slowed down your server for a few hours? That shit will crash our server in a heartbeat and ruin several people’s days. 
  • When people double space in between sentences. While this may be acceptable in some industries, it is not AP style. Do not try and tell me my business about this. Also, it makes things a nightmare to edit and format. 
 

Rant Alert: Regrets March 6, 2009

Filed under: other,rant — lexd @ 4:17 pm
Tags: ,

I’ll be honest, I read a lot of those questionnaires on MySpace and Facebook. I hate them, but I can’t stop doing it. It’s compulsive. I fill them out, too.

Over the last few years, I’ve seen the following question quite often:

“What do you regret most?” (or some variation of this theme)

What do most people answer? 

“I don’t regret anything. All the mistakes and experiences I’ve had through my life have contributed to the person I’ve become today.” (or some variation)

I call utter and complete bullshit on these people. I used to think this, too, until I realized it WASN’T TRUE AT ALL. Have I done things that I regret? Hell yes! I wish I could phrase the question this way, “If you could go back and re-live your life, would you do everything the same?” I think it might elicit some different answers.

No, I would not have taken that 4-horsemen shot on my 21 run. No, I would have never tried Wild Turkey. No, I would have never gone on a pity date. No, I would have never tried to be “cool” in high school (what a waste of time that was). Yes, I would have snuck out more often in high school. Yes, I would have spoken my mind more often to my boyfriend over the last four years. And NO, I would NOT have eaten that 3 Musketeers bar last night. What a waste of calories THAT was. 

To be honest, I think this answer is pretty standard for people like me, who have fucked up pretty badly, but don’t (or didn’t … past tense for myself) want to admit the folly in our actions. Do I regret ever starting smoking? Yes. I do. Every time I smell cigarette smoke, I want one (bonus if it’s a menthol). I hate that. Can I honestly say that my experience with smoking made me a better person today? No. Not at all. If I’d never smoked, I wouldn’t want a cigarette … ever. The smell of cigarette smoke would be as gross to me as it was before I smoked. Only my experience smoking (God only knows why I started) made that smell alluring. 

So, to those of you who would stand on your seriously flawed soapboxes and, with a straight face, tell me you’ve never regretted anything: I call a huge and unyielding “BULLSHIT, SHENANIGANS AND MALARKEY” on you. I will kick that soapbox out from under your ass. 

 

Another thought … February 24, 2009

Filed under: other,rant — lexd @ 8:08 pm
Tags: , ,

Honestly, when you’re driving and you do something dick to someone else … please wave. I have some pretty intense road rage, but if someone knows they were a douche and GENUINELY waves at me (I’m talking apology wave, not “thanks for not making me hit you, this is just how I roll” wave), I am significantly less angry. Especially if I let you in when we’re in traffic. I wish bad things on people who don’t wave – just FYI.