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This is a question Driven to Madness

Captain Placid asks: What annoying things do significant others, workmates and other people in general do that drive you up the wall? Do you want to kill your other half over their obsessive fridge magnet collection? Driven to distraction over your manager's continued use of Comic Sans (The Font of Champions)? Tell us.

(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 12:11)
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Despite the many, many things that others do that wind me up and make me want to pull out what little hair I have left I know that I do many 'innocent' things that annoy others and yet, still I do them...which drives me round the bend.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 17:51, Reply)
London pikeys screaming at each other in a fingernails-on-blackboard accent. I can't be in the same room as the TV if it's on.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 17:50, 1 reply)
Dog owners that let their dogs off the leads
in places with 'Do not let your dog of its lead' signs, the usual justification being because the sign only applies to those people who have bad dogs and "Hugo/Bouncer/Snuffles McWoof/Facechewer is just like one of the family and wouldn't hurt a fly".

Oh well, seeing as I'm one of those sorts who doesn't generally stab people does that mean I can flout the rules surrounding concealed weapons?
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 17:48, 2 replies)
My wife has expressed a desire to hurt me over my 'management' of the dishwasher.
As a result of this she has taken to instead dropping dirty items in the sink, the sink next to the dishwasher, the sink next to the dishwasher she can't use properly. Most people would expect to be able to fit more than one plate, two bowls and a coffee cup in it and yet she doesn't ever seem to be able to do just this so it must be faulty or me being a dishwasher nazi.

(I probably am a dishwasher nazi but she is a skanky bint when it comes to the kitchen (and not in a good way.))
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 17:43, Reply)
Can't even bring myself to type the word.
Alright ........CHUTNEY..... there, I've done it. Fucking hate the stuff, the smell, the taste, the name even the thought of the stuff. Even hated typing the word.

Her indoors makes it every year with the tons of apples we get in our garden. This involves a pan the size of a small bathtub bubbling away for about a week with it's contents of apple, vinegar, dog shit, Satan's smegma etc.

Usually she makes about 100 jars of it (probably about 2 dozen, but it seems like more) and they are mostly given away to friends who absolutely LOVE the stuff and tell me how fantastic it tastes while I nearly barf.

Also my dad does the whole "...but you like apples, you like vinegar, you like currants....but you don't like chutney ?" routine, EVERY YEAR!!!!!

Boxing Day lunch was my own personal hell as a kid, cold meats and various accoutrements, red cabbage, . I would eat as quickly as possible and leave the table before the first jar of offending shit was opened.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 17:33, 2 replies)
People who say "Monkey" when they mean "Ape"
I guess they also go cow-riding at the weekends, and take the armadillo for a walk in the evening.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 17:29, 13 replies)
I've said it before, but people making tea "the wrong way around"
It really irks me when I see someone making tea by pouring milk into the cup first, dropping in the tea bag, then adding the water - even more so when they have boiled the water, let it stand for a minute, then poured it in.

For me, the tea bag goes in the (preferably warmed up) cup, add boiling water, allow to brew, then add the milk...

It shouldn't bug me, but it does.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 17:20, 17 replies)
The sound of people eating
bypasses what little sense of rationality I have, and immediately attacks the part of my brain marked "grate". I have no idea why. If I can hear your teeth banging together as you chew, I will actually get up and leave the room and not come back until you have finished eating. I have racked my brains countless times to the possible cause of this irritation, but I still can't figure it out. It just causes me immediate tension and irritability.

The same thing goes for the sound of people whispering into microphones on adverts, like that advert for Laterooms (I think) with the woman whispering like she's letting us all in on a secret. If I don't manage to turn over within the first 3 seconds of it being on, I feel like I want to bite something....
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 16:48, 2 replies)
....breathing can be a capital offence chez Groove when Mrs Groover is doing a top to bottom clean.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 16:48, 5 replies)
Other peoples' children.
I've seen this in at least three countries, so I can't complain that it's peculiar to any one group. But...

Look, it's a restaurant, not a playground. Letting your kids race around the restaurant, even if it's a crappy diner somewhere, is worse than irritating to the other people there- it's teaching them to be self-centered little twats who can get away with about anything as long as the parents are otherwise distracted.

If a child is standing there chanting "MommyMommyMommyMommyMommyMommyMommyMommyMommyMommy" nonstop, ANSWER THEM. Tell them that you have to finish what you're doing first (and then make sure that you do get back to them when you're done) rather than just ignoring them, as eventually it will escalate to an ear-shattering shriek.

I get that you're proud of your child and want to give them the thrill of making their own choices, but a three year old should not be telling the woman at the counter what kind of bagel he wants, what kind of cream cheese, toasted or not, when there's a line of twenty people behind you. Ask them BEFORE you get to the front of the line.

Similarly, I get that your kid wants to walk on his own and that it's a pain to carry a struggling child. But there are times when it's the best thing, really- such as in a parking lot, in a hardware store where there are sharp things being wheeled about on carts, that sort of thing. Unless, of course, you're fine with said child being squashed, impaled, kicked, stepped on and so forth. Why not? You can always make another one, right?

I don't hate kids, I really don't. When my fist clenches to keep from delivering a mighty Dope Slap, it isn't to smite a bratty child- it's to resist beating the shit out of the so-called parents.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 16:32, 16 replies)
Throat clearer
A previous manager of mine used to clear his throat, by gurgling out a Ron Burgundy-esque groan, usually every two to three minutes.

There was no coughing or the first sign of phlegm, just a ‘grrrrr’ or ‘mnnnn’ sound.

He was also the most boring person I’ve ever had the displeasure to meet. A post in last week’s question reminded me of him as he also left massive pauses between some of his sentences.

I bumped into him in Sainsburys once with his friend ‘Tom’ (name changed) who he informed me was playing pool with him later on that day. Tom was about 12 years old and the other guy was well into his 50s.

So possibly a throat clearing, boring nonce.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 16:12, 3 replies)
A friend... Sorry for length but this is cathartic, ranting at the best.
I have a mate who has the most amazing job. Well it's more than good, higher than average salary, in an industry that goes from strength to strength. However, all she does is moan and complain. Practically everything she gets asked to do, or does on her own accord is a problem. No one in the company senior or junior knows how to do their job. If she does for example - not two minutes ago I received this message 'Remember that HTML I did the other day?' (what the code that I found for you online?) 'The MD doesn't like it - see what my day is like, I hate this job!'.

She constantly, incessantly has these issues and I have to listen to them, when I offer a solution, or advice does she ever bother taking it? No of course. Months and months ago I told her that she needed to get in with the MD and speak to him directly as there was to be a reshuffle and my friend would be getting a new boss. So perfect time to reshape her 'unhappy' role. Did she bother, no. So as a result the tasks that she liked, the bits and pieces of her role she enjoyed have been taken off her and her boss now looks after them.

Guess what this has resulted in, daily, almost hourly moans and complaints. She said the other day, she feels she has been side lined and her new boss is being all pally with the MD to get her way. No shit spock.

But the worst, the thing that really grates my nerves. I use Whats-app, a simple messaging service that uses data plan rather than my texts. Its good, and although I can set the alert tone to whatever I want, whichever/whatever I choose soon starts to get on my nerves. Here in lies the problem, rather than writing a few lines of whatever she wishes to moan about so the phone beeps just the once, she will write one sentence, or one word, then a few seconds later another, then another...

Whilst on the subject, money. I work for myself, and things can be tough. However she will constantly moan about being skint. Yes she has a mortgage, car and bills (never puts the heating on though) but she will buy the nastiest cheap food in the world. Not just super market own, but the worst cuts of meat, just nasty stuff - so whilst claiming poverty, scrimping and being a miser, she still manages to receive several parcels of clothes a week. Grrrrrrrrrrr.

This probably makes no sense, so:

tl:dr. mate has good job but finds any opportunity to complain, never takes advice, makes phone beep alot, pleads poverty yet spends hundreds every week on clothes.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 15:56, 2 replies)
She was only a farmer's daughter
She still is. Her parents didn't buy themselves a TV until she was about 14. Which meant she grew up in an isolated farmhouse in rural Norfolk in almost complete silence.

There, she could say something to someone in one room, then walk off to do something somewhere else, and still be heard.

And she got used to reading in complete silence, too.

Me, I grew up in a house with a TV and radio that got used, also in rural isolation but - here's the thing - in a 16th century cottage with stone walls three feet thick so you couldn't hear a damn thing from one room to the next. I can read a book or newspaper and watch a TV programme or listen to music at the same time paying, attention to both.

So now I live with an otherwise lovely girlfriend (most likely the future Mrs Shiny) who will happily start a conversation then leave the room while she busies herself and continue chatting away from two rooms away, upstairs, the toilet, etc. And she has a book she wants to read or work to do, she can't do it while I do anything that makes noise (TV, radio, music, cooking, etc.) so disappears somewhere quieter and huffily shuts all the doors between where I am and where she is.

Mind you she gets annoyed by my inability to see dirt* and spends most of her waking hours when she isn't working (which is most of the time, her being a teacher) cleaning. Possibly because there wasn't anything else to do as a kid, there being no telly...?

I see dirt just fine, I just don't care about it if it isn't one something I have to wear, sit on, lie on, eat or eat from.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 15:45, Reply)
Cleaning for Control
When the nearly Mrs Magictorch II gets upset, she cleans. Like, a frenzy of cleaning. it really REALLY winds me up.

But given that im normally the cause of the upset, i really have no leg. etc.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 15:02, 10 replies)
"Where's me keys? Where's me phone?"
I had to listen to that many times over waaaaay before that guy did it on X Factor.
Every. Fucking. Day.
Still do.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 14:44, 1 reply)
My ex-wife's daughters, especially the older one, left a trail of laziness in their wake
Getting something out of the cupboard? Walk off and leave the door open/light on/stuff you moved to find what you wanted where you left it...

Watching TV? Going out? Get up and walk out of the room, leaving the TV on.

Going out? Leave the front door open (I came home from w*rk once to find the front and back doors wide open, every light in the house on, TV on, heating on full and kitchen looking like a bomb site. Both girls, nowhere to be seen)

And my personal "favourite" - I gave both of them (and their mum) a lift once. When I stopped the car, they all got out and walked off - and the oldest daughter left the car door open, which I had to then get out of the car and close myself. When I mentioned this later, I was told off for moaning O_o
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 14:28, 9 replies)
Muller corner yoghurts.
I've got a mate who would genuinely become full of rage if someone had the temerity to tip the 'sweet' corner into the plain yoghurt section. Apparently, in his eyes this was some sort of cardinal sin, and the only way to eat one was a scoop of plain yoghurt topped off with the filling.

When questioned why there was a perforation in the packaging to allow such tipping his angry response was 'so you can put the little corner inside the big corner and free up space in the bin!'.

Come to think of it, I think he got a bit stroppy when he caught me eating a kit-kat like a normal chocolate bar, without all the arsing about with snapping in half and that.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 14:24, 1 reply)
A bloke at work
Has such horrendous eating habits that he wouldn't be out of place on a farmyard! In fact, even pigs might look at him in disgust.

You can be sure that wherever there is a drink, it will be slurped then swilled around his mouth before being loudly swallowed. Apples are eaten with mouth fully open during chews, this lets you hear the wettest sounding chomp since Nemo had breakfast. He can make a packet of crisps rattle the paintings with the crunches that at the same time sound wet (i think the guy has a hose pipe in his mouth)

It makes me self conscious of how I eat which is even more annoying
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 14:21, 7 replies)
Ubergeekian has reminded me
Microsoft internet connection troubleshooter: " ...This troubleshooter has been unable to fix your internet connection. For more information, go to our website". Fuck you Microsoft, just fuck you.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 14:10, 7 replies)
Au-pair Oh Noes
I live in a huge luxurious house. Well, one floor of it, the ground floor in fact. I got my own room with patio doors, my own kitchen and bathroom, for which I pay rent. The family who own it - friends of mine - live on the first and second floors with their baby son and Bulgarian au-pair.

She's bonkers. She has this thing that washing has to be done on a saturday - every saturday she'll bang on my door and tell me it's washing-time. Usually long before I'd otherwise choose to be awake. If left to her own devices (rather than shouted at) she'll then put the washing machine on. I have been known to march upstairs with a screwdriver at 6am and remove the plug from the W/M to stop her turning it on.

Then there's the phone calls. She's not stupid - she knows how to use a computer, knows not to lick the window when its cold, is very, very good at caring for my friends son.. but my God. When will it sink in that the distance a phone call its made over doesnt affect the required volume. You can hear her three doors down sometimes, from outside....

And yet she's a lovely, honest, hardworking, caring au-pair who makes my friends lives very easy. Aaaargh.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 13:34, 2 replies)
1. "You have no credit on your PAYG phone. Please top-up."
2. "Your top-up has failed. Please call customer service."
3. "You cannot speak to customer service because you have no credit. Please top up."

After dealing with Vodaphone it is a positive pleasure to get back to back to BT. BT are incompetent, but passively so. Vodaphone have actively worked on making their customer service (sic) as infuriating as it is possible to be.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 13:32, 3 replies)
My wife doesn't have an off switch
Sorry, I mean she doesn't understand the concept of off switches.

She'll walk into the bedroom, flip on the TV, change her top or whatever she came in for, then walk out - leaving the TV, lights and probably radio, curling tongs and several other appliances on and happily burning power.

I seem to be permanantly turning things off behind her*.

* insert filthy punchline here
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 13:15, 5 replies)
The missus leaving the washing up on the rack...
...but doing so in a way that resembles a kitcheny version of kerplunk. Remove one plate/mug carelessly and...kerrrash.
Oh and putting massive dishes containing small bits of food in the fridge.
She also once moved our saucepan of oil from its home on the sideboard to the shelves with all other saucepans on it. Went to grab a saucepan, quickly grabbed the one with all the oil in it (obviously not hot or owt) and covered the kitchen in the stuff.
Not pushing down the shower button, so when I turn the bath taps on I get rained on from above.
Marrying her next year so I'd better learn to get used to them, eh?
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 13:05, Reply)
Recently divorced: My war against the House Rules
Her House Rules drove me up the wall. On the other hand, I'd be the first to admit that I drove her up the wall across the ceiling and down the other side, but I'm the one on B3TA, so...

- There are no rules, except for the ones I make up, arbitrarily and on the spot
- No pissing in the shower
- All beetroot must be crinkle cut
- Obey all the rules

I actually wrote most of the House Rules down (essentially for taking the piss purposes), and I swear on my dog's life that these are all true:

- Don't fart while you're asleep
- Don't wipe your feet on the doormats, I've just cleaned them
- Don't wake up, walk to the bathroom, fart, and come back to bed, because you might bring the smell back with you
- Don’t mix your smelly laundry with mine – you’ll make it dirty.
- The Spoon Laws

And, most importantly of all:

- Don't play that game where you try to beat the slow closing toilet seat when you have a wee.

She had a point with that one, to be honest.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 12:52, 3 replies)
Gifts to Poseidon
My flat consists of four rooms and a corridor. At any one point at least three of these rooms will contain a glass or even glasses with an inch of water in it.

Mrs Quackblast is a healthy type- all yoga, minimising fat/sugar etc, and pours herself a glass of water every couple of hours but never gets round to finishing it before she pops off to get herself another one.

She doesn't understand how annoying this is and asks me what the matter is as I loudly circumnavigate the flat collecting dozens of glasses unleashing a myriad of histrionics, moans and tuts.

(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 12:50, 2 replies)
The central heating timer
On the wall next to the boiler in the kitchen is a small, innocuous-looking, cream-coloured box with a "British Gas" logo. It sets the times for when the boiler comes on and off and it's a reliable little piece of kit, if a little archaic. It is also the noisiest and most irritating contraption known to man, producing a not-quite constant stream of whirrs, ticks, clicks and taps as if it was filled with daemonic clockwork made from discordant alloys of metal as yet unknown to human science. It's precisely the kind of background noise that is impossible to filter out.

Of course the real kicker is the knowledge that after living with it for three years, I'm basically just too lazy to find another one and fit it, which would finally allow me to take the noisy little bastard into the garden and smash it with a big hammer. So there it sits on the wall, taunting me.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 12:42, 17 replies)
Bread Crusts
In the sink. I don't know why she does it, the bin is next to it, no hardship to chuck them in there.

But no, I put my hand in to pull the plug out, it touches the back of my hand - and i nearly faint.

Digusting, soggy, floating snotty globule of muck just waiting for me....
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 12:36, 1 reply)
He keeps making
a clicking noise.
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 12:23, 1 reply)
F-F-F-F-First! And let's get this one out of the way...
...I once hitch-hiked to a music festival in Finsbury Park, fronted by London's finest ska-pop band. Yes, I was DRIVEN TO MADNESS
(, Thu 4 Oct 2012, 12:15, 4 replies)

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