A Collection Of Rants On Multiple Subjects
Over Christmas, in between the plethora of bowl games – I thought it would be a great idea to watch the ABC telecast of the 2014 Indianapolis 500. Susan wasn’t convinced it was that great of an idea; but she’s a good sport, so she humored me.
I had forgotten how, during the last ten laps or so, they decided to split the screen to show the wives and girlfriends reactions while a small screen showed the on-track action between Ryan Hunter-Reay and Helio Castroneves. I got mad all over again, just as I did when I watched the replay last May.
I understand that on that particular race, they are really trying to humanize the drivers for the casual fans who tune in to watch an IndyCar race only once a year. But what about us die-hards that invest our time, money and souls into this sport? Isn’t there some consideration that we may actually want to see the great battle at the end of the biggest race of the year?
That set me off on a rant that Susan had to endure for the rest of the evening. I wanted to work the rant into this site, somehow – but I knew I couldn’t come up with an entire article on such a stupid topic as a split-screen, so I decided to create a list of mini-rants and pet-peeves to get off my chest before the start of the next season of the Verizon IndyCar Series.
While I’m blasting ABC/ESPN, I’ll include them in my next two complaints. First of all, if you watched as many bowl games as I did – you probably noticed that for the New Year’s Six bowl games, which consisted of the Rose, Cotton, Fiesta, Sugar, Peach and Orange along with the Championship Game; ESPN created a new score box that was stuck prominently in the lower right-hand corner.
This box would inexplicably shoot out another box full of graphics from it’s top, that somehow managed to obscure a large portion of the screen. Punters, receivers and quarterbacks would suddenly disappear under this giant box. I guess some graphics person that is trying to justify his or her job, decided that putting all of the information out of the way at the bottom of the screen was just too boring. No, it just worked.
Speaking of the Fiesta Bowl; as the game between Boise State and Arizona was coming back from a commercial break – ESPN made the decision to show us a slow-motion replay of an Arizona player throwing up on the field. A slow-motion replay of a kid vomiting? It’s one thing if the live cameras happened to catch him in the act. As unpleasant as it is to watch, that happens from time to time. But to purposely show us a replay – and in slow-motion – of someone blowing chunks on the field, crosses the line in my book.
While I’m on the subject of throwing up…just why do the filmmakers now feel the need to show us vomit? In the old days, they would just show someone going off-camera as we heard the barfing sound. But now, we must see every graphic gag, heave and hurl – along with the resulting vomitous residue splattering everywhere. I don’t really want to see that. What’s next – an underwater toilet defecation-cam with a zoom lens? Guess what? I don’t want to see that either.
There are also a few pet-peeves of the written/spoken language that are popping up everywhere. I’ll take a couple of moments to go off on them, as well. Non-words are becoming more and more common – both spoken and written. Strangely enough, they are now even becoming accepted.
Flustrated – If you follow me on Twitter (@Oilpressureblog), you’ve probably seen me go off on the latest non-word that I am hearing more and more frequently these days. I’ve heard it in casual conversations, but the worst offender is former Titan Kevin Dyson on the Titans post-game radio call-in show.
There is no such word as flustrated. You can be flustered or frustrated; but you cannot be flustrated. Still, I’m hearing it with increasing frequency. Perhaps Dyson is using it more because the Titans had a very flustrating 2-14 season this year.
Irregardless – Another of my all-time pet-peeves has been around for years, and is used by people that are smart enough to know better. There is no such word as irregardless. It doesn’t exist. Yet, it will probably be one of those non-words that will force it’s way into the dictionary – sort of like ain’t.
What people who say irregardless are looking for is regardless, which already has the one negative element –less. To add ir- to the front negates the other negative. However, people will continue to use it, irregardless if it is right or wrong.
Would of… – More and more, I see people avoiding the use of contractions and writing the words out phonetically – incorrectly, I might add. I believe I was taught this in the fourth grade, but apparently it is no longer taught that the contraction of “would have” is would’ve. Lately, it seems to be accepted to simply write out would of, like “I would of written it out correctly, but I didn’t know how”. That makes absolutely no sense.
Would’ve and could’ve are regularly butchered and no one seems to mind. Is the word hasn’t the next to be morphed into the non-word hassent?
Keep in mind, I don’t claim to be the King of Grammar – especially when it comes to punctuation. I’ve always struggled with the use of commas. Practically every post I have written has something to make strict grammarians cringe. But by and large, I try to adhere to the basic rules of grammar and spelling so that my writing is at least…readable.
But even that is not the end of my rants. About five years ago, I wrote a post dealing with what I considered the most dreaded clichés at the time. Going back and reading it, I still concur with everything I wrote back then. But now there are more that can be added to the list.
Actually, these aren’t so much clichés as they are trendy sayings. Clichés are the tired old phrases like “getting my ducks in a row” and “getting on the same page”. They’ve been around forever and are used in the workplace constantly. They sound corny and the meanings are hard to understand when you look at the words literally.
No, what gets on my nerves are not clichés but the trendy sayings we had never heard of until recently. Then suddenly, everyone is using them. What really gets me is when I hear someone my age using a phrase that only a teenager would use. Nothing comes across as more desperate than someone in their fifties trying to convince everyone, including themselves, that they are still young and hip. We’re not.
Some of the trendy phrases that I find particularly irritating, include the following:
That’s what I’m talking about – Yes, I know this one has been around a while. It should have been on the list that I wrote in 2010. The basic translation is “I like that!”. When I hear it used, it sounds canned, phony and disingenuous. It comes across like someone heard it used on a Chevy Tahoe commercial and they thought they sounded hip, so maybe they’ll sound hip if they use it. Sorry, but it sounds contrived on the Tahoe commercial and almost comical when people use it in real life. Don’t do it. It’s awkward. I promise.
I’m down with that – This was a catch-phrase in the early nineties, but I’m suddenly hearing it again. Why is that preferred over the English translation of "I’m OK with that”? Unless you are in the eighth grade, you shouldn’t be using this phrase.
Ain’t nobody got time for that – This is another phrase that originated from a YouTube video that went viral (another irritating term) a couple of years ago. Then everyone started saying it. Unless you hail from the ghetto – you don’t need to be talking like this.
Speaking of the ghetto – I tread lightly here, because I’m getting close to discussing racial issues, which is not my intent. But if you are white and you are talking to someone that is black, please don’t try to suddenly sound black. To me, that is a very patronizing, condescending and racist thing to do.
At my old place of employment, I had a white co-worker that changed her whole dialect and persona when a black co-worker came into the room. She would ask her white co-workers “How are you doing today?” but her black co-workers were greeted with “Hey wassup gurrl-friend?” It was painful to watch. If you’re not black, don’t try to be. You can’t pull it off.
Any verbalized text-speak – If you say the words (or letters) Hashtag, OMG, LOL out loud; you need to stop it. Immediately. Nothing sounds as asinine as a fifty year-old adult screaming O-M-G!
Epic Fail – I will admit to using this one on Twitter once or twice. It has its place, when used sparingly. But to post pictures of car-wrecks, wardrobe malfunctions or bad cakes and add “Epic Fail” as a caption to every single one is overkill. Like anything else, moderation is the key.
Get over yourself / I am so over it – If you’re not in the trendy loop and you hear someone say “I’m over it”, you think that’s a good thing. I once thought it meant that someone was mad, but they’ve gotten over it. Wrong.
In all honesty, the first time I heard that used was a few years ago when Susan and I were having a “disagreement” over something. After a silent period, I was trying to explain my stance and she came back with “I’m over it”. I thought that was great and the fight was over. To make things worse, I thought that meant she was conceding, she had gotten over it and I had actually won the fight. As it turned out, I was wrong on all counts.
To my dismay, the new meaning of “I’m over it” was pretty much “I’m done with it”. Translation: I’m tired of this whole thing. Needless to say, I had even more damage control to deal with than I originally had. And, no…I did not win the fight.
Now it seems that the saying has even more emphasis by adding the word so. “I am so over it” is the new variation. That and the “Get over yourself” version have worn themselves thin with me. I’m over both of them.
I could go on and on. Susan will tell you that this rant doesn’t even scratch the surface of my pet-peeves. I could write a book on road rage and other odd subjects that most would find very trivial. I think Susan considers me neurotic. I prefer to say I’m quirky.
Anyway, I’ve now purged my system of all of this pent up angst – for now at least. We’ve gotten Christmas behind us and the flurry of activity of returning to work has settled down somewhat. I’ve cleansed my soul of all the things that have been irritating me and I’m ready for racing season to start. It’s hard to believe, but the first practice of the 2015 season will be taking place seven weeks from today at Brasilia.
Based on this collection of rants, I’d say it’s about time. You can tell I’ve been getting very flustrated.