When I first heard about today's holiday, Festivus, and that it included a time to "air grievances," I assumed (wrongly) that it had some sort of historic tie to Martin Luther and his 95 Thesis. But, after a quick Google search, I was surprised to find out that the holiday is not at all that orthodox or legitimate even. In fact, Festivus got it's start on the television show Seinfeld, of all places, and has grown in popularity right along with the show!
Click here and here for more humorous information on Festivus.
It may not be official, but in the spirit of Festivus, I'd still like to air some grievances for your reading pleasure on this December 23rd. The "airing grievances" part is what peeked my interest in the "holiday" in the first place and it's the only part of the holiday I really wish to celebrate. To use Kramer's words, "This holiday... is scratching me where I itch," since I've been looking for an excuse, any excuse, really, to list my pet peeves in a public forum.
And, I feel like once I've dumped this list on you, here at the end of the year, I can start fresh next year. Any new annoyances that are bound to come my way in 2010 can just go on another list to be shared on December 23rd next year, perhaps.
So, here's my list of grievances, in no particular order.
1. Kept women. I'm a bit of a feminist in this way and I think this is because my mentors, the women who I respected the most as I was growing up, were all working moms. Generally, I have a hard time with women who call themselves "stay at home moms" but who aren't actually mothering for a large part of their day. Let's just say, I'm glad my husband isn't a stay at home engineer. You may know some of these "moms." They drop their kids off at school only to spend their school hours (and their husband's money) going to the gym, getting their nails done, watching daytime television on a flat screen, napping, decorating their homes, shopping for said decorations, doing nothing that pertains to being a mother, really, even being "too busy" at night to cook dinner. And when you ask them what they do, they have the nerve to say they are moms! As if their identity is a task! You've read the bumper sticker, "Anyone can be a father, it takes someone special to be a dad..." Well, that mentality applies to mothers and moms, too. Note: I have no problem with moms who send their kids to school, by the way, just women who use the titles of "wife" or "mom" for entitlements or to cover up their own superficiality and idleness.
2. Oprah. and how she is always on the cover of her own magazine and doesn't seem to be the least bit embarrassed about her obvious enthusiasm over herself. Now, I know other people are as self centered as she is, they just aren't rich enough to indulge it like she can. They have to keep blogs. And, I also realize that Rachel Ray poses on the cover of her own magazine, too, but for some reason, it doesn't bother me when she does it... Maybe that's because she's holding a plate of cookies??? Or maybe because she's so darn cute!!! Anyway, I think I just have a problem with Oprah and the version of success she represents and the ideologies she trumpets to our culture.
3. School buses. I resent getting stuck behind school buses now more than I did ten years ago when I started driving. They used to stop at the end of every street and I thought that was bad enough. But, now, buses stop in front of every... single... door. I resent having to pay taxes for the gas that idols them so much longer and for the maintenance required on the brakes that have to grind to a halt so many more times each day. Do kids really need to be seen all the way to their doorsteps?
4. Homeschoolers who don't brush their kids' hair. I am one of these and I am trying to desperately to reform myself.
5. Guys who wear "World's #1 Player" t-shirts.
6. Girls who are dumb enough to be on a date or in a relationship with #5.
7. Form fitting velour track suits.
8. Expensive brand-name coffees.
9. The perfect accessories. I've tried to "accessorize "and I've found that it takes too long to find the perfect jewelry to match every outfit and those little (or big) plastic beads often cost as much or more than the clothes they go with.
10. 7, 8 and 9 combined. Put these three together and they form the perfect trifecta of hatred for me. When I see someone in a track suit with a matching beaded necklace holding Starbucks, I have to turn my eyes away really quick, otherwise I will burn this person with the fire that shoots out of my eyes like that guy in X men.
11. People who pity us for living in Waterbury. Snobs, I call them. They don't ever come right out and say what forces their noses so high up in the air or their frowns so far down their faces, but I have a suspicion it's because of the minority people who live in the city here. This makes me furious. I often want to point out that your "area," as they so aptly call the place where I live, is also inundated with minority groups. I also want to point out that your superiority is usually just a form of advanced, racial hierarchy and it is just as shameful and ignorant as the more old, worn out version of racism. For these people, it seems to come down to which minority group they prefer over another or which group they don't mind their kids brushing elbows with as much. Have we really made so little progress since the 1960s?!
12. People, usually men, who try to teach me how to drive. They do this from the car in front of me. Example: To show me how close I am following and how dangerous this can be, various men like to slam on their brakes and glare at me through their rear view mirrors. At this point, I usually take the opportunity to speed around them since their foot is still pressed so far down on their brake pedal. What these kindly men don't realize is that I already have a man of my very own to advise me on my driving, so I don't need their charity.
13. Those who lord it over us because their home is "worth three times as much." Often the same people as #11. Correction: your home is not worth any more to you, your mortgage is just three times bigger than ours.
14. People who talk too loud in restaurants. Those who seem to think their opinions are so valuable, their jokes so funny, that everyone, even those who aren't in their party, really do want to hear what they have to say.
15. People who hurt my children. Example? Family members who tell my kids they will do something, then don't follow through. Other moms who, in one breath, make their kids apologize to another kid, but in the next breath, let their kids mistreat mine at the park just to stick it to me. Grrrr.
16. People who think they are valuable because they are beautiful. And, conversely, people who don't value you because they don't think you're beautiful enough.
17. Women, besides me, of course, who use their blogs to complain and make indirect criticisms.