When people irritate me, I can generally brush it aside; I may show my displeasure to a degree, but it’s a fairly reserved displeasure—a slight grimace, a furrowed brow or perhaps a slightly sharp comment. It’s never at the reality TV show level where there’s unimaginative name-calling, outrageous accusations and physical brawling. [Pause.] However, when I get irritated at inanimate objects, suddenly it’s an entirely different story.
I don’t think I’m alone with my frustration of inanimate objects. Really, anything could set me off, although anything technological has a better shot of pissing me off—like my computer. I love my computer when everything is going smoothly, but if (and when) something goes awry, suddenly I’m cussing up a storm. I know very well that my computer can’t hear me, and my throwing verbal slams at it doesn’t help one bit, but my inability to magically fix the situation angers me and that anger doesn’t want to be bottled up inside, so it explodes in expletives. And while my swearing doesn’t solve anything per se, eventually I get tired enough to calm down to the point where I can deal with the problem with a clearer (and less pissed off) mindset.
I think the problem I have with inanimate objects is that they often lack the ability to actually help you understand the problem. You just get some cryptic message that something’s wrong and then you have to decipher what that actually means (through a manual or by searching the internet for answers); that inability to know what the issue is, is often more frustrating than the actual problem itself. And as a result, being in that black hole of uncertainty inevitably brings out the verbally worst in me. [Sigh.]