What Annoys Jeff this Week?

1. The middle of the damned night. Months ago, I signed up for the 4-hour in person class I need to sit through in order to apply for a Utah non-resident carry permit. I did it fully knowing that the class was scheduled from 5-9 PM on a weekday. I know it won’t seem like it to a normal, reasonable person, but let me assure you that to me, stumbling out of the training facility at 9 PM on a Wednesday felt like it might as well have been two in the damned morning. It’s over, finished, and done with and I now have all the required paperwork to file a request with our friends in the state of Utah, but it’ll take me a week for my internal clock to figure out what the hell happened and why we’re so far off schedule.

2. Misplaced expectations. Here’s something more people should probably know about me: I’m not going to chase you. I don’t care what you “bring to the table.” I don’t care how good you look in a sundress. I don’t really even care if you do that thing I like. I’ve arrived at a stage in life where I have been perfectly happy before I meet someone and I’ll be perfectly happy when they’ve departed the scene. I might feel bad for about ten minutes, but then I’m going to mix a gin and tonic, flip open a book, dispense some ear scratches, and be entirely content. If you go away expecting that I’ll chase you, good luck and godspeed in your future endeavors. We’re done here.

3. I’m cynical and jaded and don’t make much of an attempt to hide it. Give me enough time and I can find the lead lining in every silver cloud. That said, I’ve worked jobs where bosses were actively trying to make life more difficult – truly the kind of guys (and they’ve all been guys) who seemed to just want to watch the world burn. I can’t attribute that kind of malice to the current crop of immediate bosses. Some of them I might even be willing to concede are well intentioned. That doesn’t mean the decisions forced on them from higher, the general working conditions, and the ongoing efforts to suck what little bit of joy you can muster in cubicle hell out of the room aren’t conspiring to turn morale into a smoking crater somewhere beneath what use to be an already very low bar. I’ll do all the things on time and to standard, because that’s the devils bargain I struck in exchange for the money, but if you’re expecting a smile on my face and a song in my heart while it’s happening, you’ve come to the wrong place.

What Annoys Jeff this Week?

1. Twitter. I follow a pretty eclectic mix of personalities on Twitter – celebrities, politicians, news outlets, historic buildings, porn stars, military thinkers, military do-ers, and government organizations. With few exceptions, the dumpster fire that is Twitter has turned both more dumpster-y and more fiery over the last weeks and months. It’s become considerably less fun. It may be time to clear out the ol’ Twitter feed with a chain saw to see if we can correct that issue before deciding whether or not platform is hopelessly beyond redemption.

2. Government spending. The only time the US Government spent more money than it is right now, we were fighting a war of national survival against Nazi Germany and the Empire of Japan. Now I don’t mean to imply that the Great Plague and its fallout haven’t been bad, but I’m not sure it has been end of western civilization bad. That won’t stop us from collectively throwing absolutely shit tons of money at it though. We seem to have gotten use to throwing around dollar amounts denominated in trillions over the last year, but the reality is the amount of debt we’re collectively financing to pay for short term stimulus versus long term growth is simply staggering. If it’s true that we ended the Cold War, in part, because we spent the USSR into oblivion, I don’t have a hard time imagining the day when we, too, reach the upper limit of our national line of credit. It’ll make what we currently think of as hard times feel like the most welcoming Spring day.

3. Walkers. The warm weather this week, as it does every spring, has brought out the neighborhood walkers in force. This fine. Good on them for wanting to be out stretching their legs at bit. Personally, I prefer taking the air in my own yard and woods, but to each their own. People wandering past all afternoon doesn’t particularly bother me. I’m tucked in to the back of the house with better views than out to the street. The problem, because of course there’s a problem, is that as much as I don’t mind, at least one of my canine residents minds terribly… and shows it by frantically barking at every single thing that moves anywhere within his line of sight. I can’t stop people from walking, but I am strongly considering bricking up every window on the front of the house.