Thursday, March 08, 2007

Introducing: Pet Peeves

I'm starting something new here.

I'm clearly an opinionated person and, for some reason, I get the impression that plenty of you also have some pretty strong opinions. So, I'm going to start a new type of thread where I get to air one of my biggest pet peeves and then allow you to do the same. Since this is a Grand Forks blog, most of my pet peeves will be geared towards things in the local community that really bug me.

After you read each of my pet peeves, feel free to comment on it and tell me that I'm the most anally retentive person you know. Then, the fun part...share your pet peeves. What really bugs you?

GrandForksGuy's Pet Peeve #1:
Why can't some people ever learn the correct names of the streets in this city...streets they probably drive on everyday? How many times must I hear "32nd Street", "42nd Avenue", "Washington Avenue", or "Gateway Street"? Even as a kid, I knew that Columbia Mall was on 32nd Avenue and that the hospital was on Columbia Road.

It's bad enough to hear newcomers struggling with these names, but it's even more frustrating when someone who has lived in Grand Forks for years says something about the Alerus Center being "out on 42nd Avenue." The worst is when I see a news report on WDAZ or in the Herald and the reporter screws up the names...that really bugs me.

For one last time: east-west routes in Grand Forks are AVENUES and north-south routes are STREETS. Any route that is labeled a "Road", "Drive", or "Way" is just an anomaly in an otherwise very simple naming system.

So there it is, my first pet peeve.

Now, what bugs you?

45 comments:

GrandForksGuy said...

When I was reading through my first pet peeve, I couldn’t help but hear Andy Rooney’s voice.

Oh no...I’m becoming crotchety...

Serenity now said...

I have one. I live in the south end of Grand Forks. Part of my property includes a long sidewalk along the street which I attempt to keep clear of snow for the many pedestrians that walk on it. Due to the large amount of recent snow the City ran out of room to plow snow onto the berm outside my house. To fix this the City sent a plow down my street and pushed the snow farther back onto the berm. This caused a mountain of snow to cover the sidewalk. I now have 3 feet of snow on parts of the sidewalk that I don't believe I should have to shovel off. I contacted the City and asked if they would be coming out to plow out the sidewalk since they put the snow there. I was told that snow removal on sidewalks is the responsibility of property owners who own the property the sidwalk runs through. I was also told if I don't clear the sidewalk and a complaint is filed with the City they will then send someone out to clear the sidwalk and bill me for the employee's time. Can you all hear the sound of me banging my head against a solid object???

GrandForksGuy said...

Wow, that sounds extremely frustrating....and unreasonable on the part of the city. The city pushing the snow farther back is one thing, but how can they get buy with deliberately pushing it onto a city sidewalk?

Anonymous said...

This isn't uniquely GF, but...I hate it when people wait until they get to the check-out to start digging deep in their pockets and purses for exact change. Can ya' think ahead just a little?

Anonymous said...

Actually difficult to come up with something...maybe I should weigh the thought over a few days. :o)

Wondering if anyone catches themselves saying "thank you" to the clerks in grocery stores and gas stations, though. Seems sort of strange to thank THEM when they forget to thank you for stopping by. Always seems to get back to the customer relations, no matter the thread, doesn't it?

cell phobic said...

My pet peeve is inattentive cell phone users. Every day I see cell phoners step out in front of traffic and nearly get plowed into by cars. Don't assume everyone can (or will) stop for you. Then there's the cell-addicted drivers who hold up traffic or endanger other commuters while texting or mindlessly chatting. There oughta be a law. Hopefully it doesn't take a tragic accident for people to wake up and look up.

JGS said...

When people don't know how to drive during the winter.

city runner said...

I think I speak for most runners who frequent the city sidewalks when I present my pet peeve: drivers who stop in the crosswalk in front of us pedestrians. Remember that test you had to take to get your driver's license? You are supposed to stop BEHIND that big white line on the street. You are supposed to stop BEHIND the stop sign. Pedestrians have the right of way when in the crosswalk. It is very frustrating to have to change my course every time I cross a street because of a driver with total disregard for foot traffic.

Charlie said...

Y'all had to bring up driving habits, didn't you?

Grand Forks has to be leading the nation in people that run lights. (And yes, oftentimes the lights ARE already red.) Doesn't anyone know that the yellow light means "clear the intersection," rather than give 'er heck and barrel on through?

Seems to me the city could pick up some revenue if the police department would ticket those violators...

Anonymous said...

The music that comes from the radio stations. I'm not into Country Western and I'm not into the latest Fergie or Beyonce song. I find myself aimlessly surfing through all the AM & FM stations to find ANYTHING worth listening too. CBC Winnepeg is interesting at times.

Anonymous said...

Rude and obnoxious clerks who are too busy chit chatting to their friends about their latest date, conquest, drunk night or what ever. I told one clerk to stop chatting and pay attention to me, the customer. I think Mr. Silverman was right in treating each customer as a guest in your house. You wouldn't ignore a guest in your house, why should you ignore a customer who has money in their pockets to spend at your store.

Anonymous said...

People that don't pay attention to road condition while they're driving.

Ex: driving 30mph up until you reach a stop sign when it's icy.

This happened to me the other day. I saw this lady approaching the intersection quickly, and totally fucking knew she was going to slide right through it. So I stopped and watched.

Sure enough, she did. But the best part was when she gave me this "I had no idea that was going to happen" look. It was priceless.

Another peeve. I keep my sidewalk shoveled perfectly. I do this because I have this eeking feeling that it's my civic duty to provide anyone using the sidewalk with a clear path, as well as delivery people (mail, food, whatever). We all use the sidewalk, so I'll gladly keep it maintained.

For some reason, my neighbors assume this clear spot of sidewalk has become the spot they will take their dogs to, so they can relieve themselves without slipping on ice.

It's driving me insane.

Anonymous said...

city runner said...

I can understand that point...sometimes I feel the same way.

But, on the other hand, when the city makes no attempt to clear the corsswalks so you can actually see the crosswalk lines, or even have lines to begin with, it's almost impossible to judge how far that line it.

I guess to be safe, you could stop 10 feet behind the corner, but then you'll have to pull out to see traffic coming anyway, so. Yeah, I don't know.

Anonymous said...

city runner said...

Also, I guess it should be mentioned that GF is fairly pedestrian unfriendly. We live in a car cultre taken to extremes here, so it can be expected that drivers will act this way sometimes.

ben said...

my pet peeve is when people use the "F" word in totally useless situations, and then don't have the guts to put their name to a stupid comment that cusses and sounds un-intelligent because of it.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
The music that comes from the radio stations.

Totally agree with you there, anon... commercial radio is my main pet peeve. That's why I listen to 90.1 KSRQ - Thief River's college station and 90.7 KUND from our own university campus... both are public stations so you don't have to listen to that annoying Valley Dairy cappucino song 40 times a day, and rarely play the same song twice in one day.

mattfacingsouth said...

The limit lines (or street lines in general) are fairly non-existent in GF, so I'm not sure how we're supposed to gauge the stop in the first place.

However, when they do exist, the limit lines too far back from the intersection to be able to join the flow of traffic without doing the "creep." They're about 6-10 feet further back than those in my hometown. It makes a big difference.

Heck, I think when a crosswalk is present, there is an additional limit line a few feet from the crosswalk (for a grand total of 3 lines). That is ridiculous - the crosswalk line furthest from the intersection should serve as the limit line. There's nothing like having nearly two car lengths from limit line to intersection shoulder to jump into a merge.

Of course, if there is a pedestrian present, I always give them a huge margin for courtesy's sake as well as safety.

Still, pet peeve #1, and it happened again today: the freeway on-ramps are for acceleration to match the flow of traffic, especially the nice straight ones.
Nothing bothers me more than a dude in his town car doing 45 until he gets in the slow lane. And it's scary when you've got big-rigs in both freeway lanes side-by-side doing 80 coming up behind you.

The only reason it hasn't caused an accident here is because there's not a hell of a lot of traffic to cause one to run out of options and consequently get in someone else's business. I'm not in the habit of making someone who is at crusing speed on the interstate make a major adjustment for my lack of assertiveness (or situational awareness).

Yup, traffic peeves will always get me going - and what's happening is that GFers have never had to really care much about traffic in the past, but with the congestion on the south end and poor street/traffic design in places, it's time to start learning how to make good (and quick) decisions.

Get moving!! said...

"with the congestion on the south end and poor street/traffic design in places..."

I agree with you Matt about the southend congestion.

I long for the days when you could actually drive 40 mph down 32nd Avenue South. Traffic speeds have dropped to about 20-25 with all those damn stoplights and daydreaming drivers. I don't even use that road anymore if I can help it. What is the posted speed limit on 32nd anyway? Is it still 40 or has it dropped?

Anonymous said...

People walking their dogs down the sidewalk and letting them take a crap in my yard without picking it up. Dogs poop, this I understand, but people who don't pick it up annoy the heck out of me. If I could get away with it I'd sit on my deck with a paintball gun and shoot everyone who didn't pick up after their pooch.

city runner said...

mattfacingsouth -

You gauge where you are supposed to stop by the location of the stop sign.

It isn't that hard to look to see if a runner/walker is coming down the sidewalk, and stop to let them through. If looking for pedestrians is too difficult, a driver could, perhaps, follow traffic laws and simply stop before they get to the stop sign.

At a traffic light, you stop at the wide white line. I realize many of these around town are worn to the point that they are not visible, but this isn't the place I usually have problems. If a car is stopped at a traffic light and I am crossing, I'm pretty sure that car is going to stay put (unless the light changes). The problem I have is at stop signs. People blow right through them out to the corner of the block, where they slow slightly before entering the intersection. This happens constantly...I just wish people were more aware of foot traffic when driving.

dale said...

The music that comes from the radio stations.

Totally agree with you there, anon... commercial radio is my main pet peeve.


Mine too, but I ditched it a few years ago and bought an XM radio for the car. Second best technology purchase ever (best one being my first Tivo).

Now, I listen to 96.1FM for the five minutes I'm in the bathroom getting ready in the morning, NPR for those rare times I'm in my wife's car and don't bring the XM along, and commercial free music, catered to my tastes, the rest of the time.

For me, the "that's it" moment for local radio was having to listen to XL93 in the morning, driving my daughter to school, and being subjected to one too many "dick and fart" joke. Aside from 96.1, all "music" stations seem to feel they need to air dirty jokes all morning.

mattfacingsouth said...

Runner,

I have no beef with pedestrians at all. Along with my more-aggresive-than-average-in-ND driving mannerisms, my head is on a swivel for y'all. I'm used to a lot more foot traffic than is the norm here and have always been vigilant.

My issue with the limit lines has more to do with visibility of cross-traffic and positioning to merge than anything else. Like I said before, they're WAY far back from the intersection.

JGS said...

Yes, 32nd Avenue South is still posted as 40MPH. But I agree, everyones speed has reduced to atleast 5-10MPH with more congestions/stop lights on the corridor nowaday. I still try to go 40MPH, but it's just too hard with all the traffic on the road. When are they going to widen this roadway and be able to do the actual speed limit?

Anonymous said...

People who park in handicapped spots---fairly obviously using someone in the family's handicapped card on their mirror---who a world more fit than the average joe.

I know; impossible to tell if they have a heart condition or such, but tell me it's not abused, and plenty.

vcsuvike said...

There are too many but the my top two are radio stations - (why every member of my family has SIRIUS radio), and people who think driving is a right (it's a privilege people!).

Anonymous said...

ben said...
my pet peeve is when people use the "F" word in totally useless situations, and then don't have the guts to put their name to a stupid comment that cusses and sounds un-intelligent because of it.


Such as "Ben, go fuck yourself" or "quit being a prissy fucking grammar bitch".

Is that what you mean?

Anonymous said...

I walk daily and find GF fairly pedestrian friendly. Some people do need to work harder on keeping their sidewalks clear. People living on corners need to clear to the street in both directions and then do it again after each street plowing. It is annoying [not to mention difficult] for a short- legged, older walker to have to climb up and over 2 foot high barriers when crossing the street. There are several businesses in town that have large piles of snow [from clearing their parking lots] on the public sidewalk.

Anonymous said...

I am constantly peeved by bad grammar! With is a preposition and needs an object--go with me, not go with! Along the same line objects of the preposition should be the objective case not the nominative--for Jim and me, not for Jim and I, also with Jim and me, not with Jim and I, etc. A number of people [particularly, but by no means exclusively, sport announcers] need to review irregular verb forms. I am so tired of hearing 'he has ran, he has ate, he has went', etc. instead of 'he has run, he has eaten, he has gone'!

Jargon said...

Not really a pet peeve, but a humorous observation; I frequently heard the word "boughten", as in, "I should have boughten that when I saw it." I don't know if that's a GF thing or North Dakota thing, but I find it amusing. Kinda like the redundant "hot water heater".

Anonymous said...

Jargon,

Boughten is not kind of redundant, it is just wrong! So is the use of borrow when one means lend [example: Can you borrow me a pencil?]. I hear this a lot in ND.

glass half full said...

That whole borrow/lend thing REALLY gets to me, and I hear bankers use it... Don't they need to know the difference?
But my Pet Peeve is blinker usage and turning into the correct lane. If you are going to turn, use a blinker and turn into the lane closest to you - I've had so many near misses with idiots merging!

Anonymous said...

Yes! I hate people that turn into the far lane. If someone behind me does that, I cut them off immediately.... using my turn signal first, of course.

With regard to grammar: add the general degradation of correct apostrophe usage and the death of adverbs. Apostrophes are botched so frequently that many people now believe the improper uses to be correct. Sports announcers are especially guilty of bad verb modification as well: "he played physical." Wrong!

Matthew said...

I wrote up a bit about this last night, but the ancient computer I was on wouldn't let me post it :(

So here they are, in short fashion:

1. Idiot drivers who don't realize that they should treat cyclists as cars instead of people.

2. Idiot cyclists who break all the rules, causing idiot drivers to not treat me like a car when I am cycling.

ben said...

anonymous - grow up...hey..another pet peeve! People who refuse to grow up. It is amazing when you can find a pet peeve in a post about pet peeves!

mattfacingsouth said...

I'm pretty sure you can go into the far lane on a left-hand turn as long as it's a single turn lane (as in not dual like Demers onto Washington heading southbound).

But yeah, when people swing into the far lane on a right-hand turn it's downright dangerous. Stop it.

Anonymous said...

mattfacingsouth:

You are incorrect. According to the ND rules of the road found at http://www.dmv.org/nd-north-dakota/manuals.php it says on page 33 of the manual, 37 of the pdf, To turn left from a two-way road onto a four-lane highway, approach the turn with your left wheels close to the centerline of the road. Make the turn so that you enter the passing lane of the four-lane highway. When traffic permits, move to the right, out of the passing lane. It says highway, but it would apply to any multi-lane road unless otherwise indicated. There is a picture in the manual also.

This way, if you do make a proper turn, this would allow people on the other side of the road to turn into the right-hand lane while you are turning into the left-hand lane.

This is a pet peeve of mine and ran into it today...

GJB

mattfacingsouth said...

I stand corrected.

I guess for that one I'm still on California time; when I left, it was legal there. I'd probably do well to brush up considering it's been 8 years since I read an ND manual and years of driving in CA haven't been washed out completely. :)

mattfacingsouth said...

Though, I should say I was thinking about a left turn from a traffic signal. I'll read up on the code to see if that makes a difference. FWIW, I wouldn't do that from a stop sign.

Anonymous said...

"Grand Forks has to be leading the nation in people that run lights. (And yes, oftentimes the lights ARE already red.) "

Ah, you need to visit the Silicon Valley. I see lights turn red and 3-5 people just blow right through it. I see it ALL THE TIME. Inconsiderate yuppie morons on their cell phones usually.

Sometimes it's the foreigners. you know, the folks that move here from India, where they never owned a car and the last thing they drove was a donkey. They move here and run out to buy a Mercades or a Lexus, and they can't drive.

Someone needs to tell them that when they see an ambulance behind them with its lights & sirens going, they need to get out of the way. I wish that would happen..

GrandForksGuy said...

I knew that a thread about pet peevs/complaints would go over well on here. Keep it up guys.

ben said...

not moving over for ambulances/fire/police...
just plain old dumb...or maybe vapor lock because they are scared..either way it is dangerous.

Anonymous said...

...people who wear their caps backwards. (Do they know how goofy they look?)

Along the same subject line, the philosophy of leaving one's cap on in restaurants, theatres and the like shows little character. Maybe we want to go back to the frontier days when cowboys always left their hats on.

Petty stuff, I know; but a pet peeve, all the same.

guys and gals said...

How often have you heard this at a restaurant; "What can I get you GUYS?"

I tip more when the waiter or waitress makes an effort to acknowledge the difference between male and female customers. Patrons referred to as ladies or gentlemen instead "guys" goes a long way in my book.

Anonymous said...

Looks like this one is starting to die down, so better throw in one more pet peeve...

Saturday, Mall of America, it's nice out, the MN High School Hockey Tourney is in town, the MN Auto Show is in town and that afternoon, everybody decides to go to the MOA.

Well, while wandering around looking at the girls, was going up an escalator at one point. There's lots of people using the escalators, they're almost always full. Well, this lady in front of me get to the top and STOPS and starts looking around. I had to quickly tell her to keep moving before me and everybody behind me started piling up on her. Then she looks at me like I did a nasty thing telling her to move. (I only said "Keep moving"...no profanity or insults.) The lady needed to get a clue...

GJB

Anonymous said...

1) Dog crap. The world is not your dog's toilet. If you are too inconsiderate to clean up after your dog, you don't deserve to have a dog.
2) Hands off. It's not the left-hand side, or the right-hand turn lane. "Hand" has nothing to do with it.
3) Pay no attention to the customer paying your salary.
I can't count the number of times I have been invisible to the Hugo's checkout person because they were too busy complaining to the checkout person in the next lane about their long shift (4 hours) or how they were so busy they are late for their break (10 min ago).
4) Borrow me your grammar book.
You lend it to someone, you borrow it from someone. If a banker states this incorrectly to you, look for another bank.