notquiteold

Nancy Roman

The Annoying Side of Good Things

A few days ago, while I was driving, I had an overwhelming urge for the piece of chocolate that I knew was in my purse. My mother had given me two Dove chocolates the day before, and I had eaten one immediately. But the second one was in my purse. And it was calling to me.

My bag was on the passenger seat, and as I drove, I rummaged with my right hand, trying to find the wondrous little foil square. But I couldn’t. I felt a lot of lipsticks, and a few stray falling-apart sheets of Kleenex, a nail file I had looked for previously and could have sworn was not in that bag, some loose change that felt like sticky pennies, and a ballpoint pen – that even though I could only feel it and not see it, I knew would never write, since none of the pens in my purse ever wrote. It’s like once they jump in there, they dry up in dark sorrow.

But no chocolate.

But I was not discouraged. I knew that when I came to the next red light, I could actually look in the purse, and find the chocolate.

And guess what? For the remainder of my 35-minute ride, I did not once have to stop at a light. Only green lights for more than half an hour.

And I was so annoyed. I wanted that stupid chocolate so much.

But it got me to thinking.

How lucky is it to drive that far and hit only green lights? I should have been delighted instead of annoyed. And how many lucky things have happened to me that I did not appreciate because I was distracted by being annoyed at something else.

Aggravation seems to be stronger than Appreciation.

I remember studying my ass off for an exam, only to wake up to a snow day. Sure, I was thrilled that I didn’t have to go to school, but I was really annoyed that I studied so hard, when I had a whole extra day to study a little more leisurely.

I felt exactly the same emotion when I prepared for an important business meeting like I was taking the entrance exam for heaven. I so badly wanted to make a great impression. But the executive I was trying to impress had a last-minute conflict, and the meeting was rescheduled for the following week. I had a whole extra week to be even better prepared, and that should have been wonderful. But I was disappointed beyond belief. (and did not do any extra prep in that whole week, by the way).

And there was the time, I fell down some steps and was sure I broke my leg. And the doctor in the emergency room said it was only a sprain, and I should just elevate it. He didn’t even give me crutches for God’s sake. I really wanted crutches AND a cast.

Or even when my sunscreen works TOO well, and I come up from a glorious beach day as white as when I left the house.

And I rehearsed the most excellent argument to force that horrible store to take back the item I bought and instantly regretted. And that horrible sales clerk said, “Of course, we’ll take it back. So sorry it didn’t work out for you.” And then what the hell am I supposed to do with all that hostile and perfect outrage?

And most of all, I am annoyed when someone I really dislike does something sweet. I hate having to change my opinion. Why do unpleasant people have to be so damn nice?

 

theoguardinghiscookie

Theo. He should be happy that he got a cookie, but instead he is fretting that the kitten will steal it.

42 Comments

  1. haha 🙂 very well articulated ! i have felt many similar emotions 🙂 it’s nice when you can recognize them and pen them down !

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks. We human beings are just a jumble of contradictions.

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  2. It’s good to look at the irony in our lives. Thanks for the surprising view.

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    • I try not be let the little things annoy me. I am not always successful.

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  3. I knew exactly where you were going with the chocolate story — happens to me all the time. I notice it most of all when I want to show my hubby something on my cell phone, waiting to do so at the next red light….. and we hit green ones all the way there!

    Liked by 1 person

    • And of course when you are in a big hurry to get somewhere, EVERY light is red.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Tim

    Did you ever find the chocolate?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. “Aggravation seems to be stronger than Appreciation.”
    I hate that you’re so right. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • For me, the darker emotion seems to be stronger. But I work on it.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I love this…absolutely true!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. haha what a well written article! I concur with almost everything.

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  8. https://my30somethingadventures.wordpress.com/

    Great post! I know what it is like to rush like crazy for something and then the irritation when it can wait! There should be relief but instead we feel annoyance.

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    • For sure! And how about when you scramble like crazy because company is coming, and then they’re late?

      Liked by 2 people

  9. This kind of reminds of a technique advertisers use, called something like “perceived loss”.

    To run with your chocolate theme, imagine a friend unexpectedly hands you one of your favourite chocolates, but you fumble it and drop it and it rolls down a drain. Of course you’re no better or worse off than one minute previously – you had no chocolate then and you still have none now. But because you had the promise of chocolate, and then that was taken away from you, you feel like you’ve missed out or been cheated.

    So advertisers try to convince us that without their new product (which we were blissfully utterly oblivious too a moment previously) our lives are incomplete, we’ll be miserable and all our friends and family will disown us…

    Being aware of this goes a long way to being able to resist shiny new stuff that we don’t need!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Very true. It makes such sense as you state it so simply and clearly. Thanks!

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  10. Well said! I have that problem at work all the time! Instead of being irritated at the little things I should appreciate the great job that it is!

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    • We’re human after all… maybe the best we can hope for is that we recognize that it is BOTH a great and an irritating job.

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  11. Oh, Nancy, you are singing my song! I was just thinking about how I used to sometimes get overwhelmed answering blog comments, and then immediately thought, “OH SURE JULES, what a horrible problem to have.” I loved your line, “It’s like once they jump in there, they dry up in dark sorrow.”

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    • Ah Jules… we have all been there – complaining about our successes and forgetting they are successes. I have yet to have a pen survive the bottom of my purse.

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  12. “Aggravation seems to be stronger than Appreciation.” Truer words were never spoken. Thanks for the reminder. I was feeling aggravated this morning because its dull and rainy outside when I should have been feeling appreciation for the fact that the lousy weather gives me a good reason to sit by the fire with my cats and read all day! 😉

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    • It is so easy to let the smallest thing spoil our overall happiness.

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  13. Being human is such complicated work. When will I ever adjust to the way they do things on this planet? At least I have the physical appearance part down pat. 🙂

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    • And what did you look like before you assumed the physical appearance of the planet? I hope you were an attractive alien.

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  14. I have always thought that it is much easier to be negative than positive, which explains why so many people are. And I think we tend to dwell on the criticism we receive much more than the compliments. Why, I have no idea.

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    • The negative stuff makes a bigger dent.

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  15. Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha loved this! So true.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Our culture rewards aggravation ~ TV series show hand-wringing and frustrated parents, snotty kids, and bratty cut-throat co-workers. Anyone enjoying peace and happiness are viewed as being “out there” or “on something” — I loved this post because it’s so true ~ and thank you for the reminder the see the forest for the trees, too 🙂 MJ

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    • The issue, I think, is that bad stuff is just plain more interesting.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. It’s true. We do tend to always seek the disappointment instead of the appreciation. I try not to be that way but sometimes I think human nature gets in the way. This is me still going to keep trying. 😉

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    • I was always a drama queen, even as a kid, because it was just so much more interesting. And most of us stay that way.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Nancy how are you getting that many followers? I could use some tips. I have a fairly new blog called http://www.themindfulblogger.eu.

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    • Follow other bloggers who write about similar topics. Comment often. Write regularly. And most of all – Be Patient! I’ve been at it seven years.

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      • Thank you for your comments, I’m already happy to see that I had 30 views yesterday! I’ll follow some bloggers like you said to immerse myself. I’m kind of liking the blogging so far!

        Liked by 1 person

  19. süper

    Liked by 1 person

  20. poor girl you just wanted the chocolate
    and a red light!

    Liked by 1 person

  21. DIDN’T eat the chocolate?

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  22. So did the dog eat the chocolate?

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