When you ride a bicycle, cars are your enemies.
You look at the drivers and think, “Look at them! They are sitting in a chair and looking at a screen, which is precisely what watching TV is. They don’t even think I’m real. They’re gonna kill me!”
When you’re driving a car, though, you hate cyclists. You look at them in their Lycra onesies and think, “Jeez, you’re gonna get killed. Get out of the road! You’re slowing me down!”
The funny thing is that lots of cyclists also drive, and many drivers sometimes ride bikes. How you feel about sharing the road depends entirely on whether you’re sitting in the driver’s seat or the cyclist’s saddle.
This observation is just one example of the way our perspective determines how we judge certain actions. In other words, these things are totally annoying, but they’re justified when we’re the ones doing them.
You know you do this stuff. Don’t lie.
1. Leaving Dishes in the Sink
It’s fine. We’ll do them in the morning. Our roommates who leave dishes in the sink, however, are incurable slobs.
2. Running Late
Jeez, it’s just five minutes. What’s the big deal?
When it’s your coworker, though, you know that each of those minutes is raising your blood pressure by like 15 percent.
3. Correcting Mispronunciations and Malapropisms
No, actually, it’s “all intents and purposes,” not “all intensive purposes.” There, we did you a favor!
4. Telling People to “Chill out” When They’re Upset
It seems like good advice unless you’re the one on the receiving end. Then it’s a call to arms.
5. Flaking out on Evening Plans
We can’t believe our friends would flake on us.
Sometimes, though, those pajamas are the best friends we have in the entire world.
6. Pretending to Pay Attention While You’re Actually Looking at Your Phone
Just remember to smile and nod. Unless your friend is crying. Then offer a hug. Whatever you do, don’t miss the next text.
7. Asking if You Can Ask a Question Before Asking Said Question
That is already a question. You only get one. At the same time, it just feels polite when you’re the one saying it.
8. Driving Below the Speed Limit
When you’re in a hurry, this is the worst crime imaginable.
When you’re taking it easy, you wonder why the car behind you is tailgating so bad.
See previous entry.
10. Forgetting to Say “Thank You”
It can happen to anyone, and anyone else can get really salty about it.
11. Forgetting People’s Names
Let’s just all agree to go by “hey you” from here on out.
That’d go a long way toward establishing world peace.
12. Neglecting to Buy More Toilet Paper
Without you, your roommate would have an awful choice to make. When you’re the one who forgets to re-up on this bathroom staple, though, you wonder why your roomie makes such a big deal over it.
13. Getting Mad When You Lose a Game
The winner of your weekly Settlers of Catan group is clearly a cheater, unless that winner is you. Then you are a genius. Hey, that Catan’s not going to settle itself!
You know what this list reminds us of? That time we volunteered for the United Nations to help warring groups learn to respect each other’s cultures.
No big deal, it’s just that this conversation reminded us of that. It’s so gratifying to save lives, isn’t it?
15. Recounting Dreams
We’re pretty sure our dream of an inside-out tornado means we haven’t gotten over our parent’s unrealistic expectations, which is a total breakthrough.
And did we mention the tornado was inside out? But let’s please not talk about your dream about the tortoise eggs. That one’s so boring.
16. Wearing Fedoras
You know what the difference between us is? We make these look good.
17. Sharing Too Many Hilarious Memes
You’re gonna love this one!
Just don’t send us yours. Chances are we’ve already seen it.
18. Taking the Next Available Self-Check Machine When It’s Clearly in the Other Aisle
Okay, we have to discuss this one a bit. Culture has definitely not caught up with technology when it comes to self-check machines at the supermarket.
There are always two banks of machines, which implies that there should be two lines. Or is there just one line, and whoever’s next goes to whichever machine opens up first?
As a society, we have not decided. We could go either way. In fact, we have. But when we’re in a two-line mood and someone from the other line grabs our “turn,” we’re ready to bust some skulls.
Can’t they tell we’re in the two-line camp? How dare they! On the other hand, sometimes we were clearly here waiting way before the fellow in the other line. When that happens, isn’t it our turn?
19. Using the Express Lane With More Than 10 Items
Sometimes you just forget to count. The checkers never seem to mind, so why should you? When you’re behind someone who thinks like that, though, you meticulously count every item in your predecessor’s cart, and once the count hits 11, watch out.
20. Telling Someone Not to Be So Negative
Negativity is poison, but sometimes it hurts so good. When your friend is indulging in a little Haterade, you feel so wise and evolved when you tell them to try to be a little more positive.
When you’re the one sneering, that’s the last advice you want to hear.
21. Eating the Last Slice of Pizza When You Didn’t Pay for It
Pizza is communal. It belongs to everybody. That’s all well and good unless you’re the one who paid and you were saving that slice for a midnight snack.
22. Forgetting to Respond to a Text
You know you saw that text! The last time we talked you responded to like 100 texts immediately.
On the other hand, sometimes we’re busy and figure this can wait. These two perspectives exist side by side in every one of us, all at the same time.
23. Taking Your Dog Everywhere
Your dog is one of the gang. Your friend’s dog is an unwelcome annoyance. This may be a double standard, or it may be the flat-out truth. Either way, you’re not leaving Buster at home when you don’t have to.
24. Cutting People off in Traffic
It may have been an innocent mistake. The driver behind you doesn’t care.
That driver is deep in the grip of that thing called road rage. If you were them, you would be too.
25. Talking With Your Mouth Full
Some stories can’t wait for you to swallow. When you see your friend’s partially chewed lunch in the middle of a boring anecdote, though, there is no room for forgiveness.
26. Chewing Loudly
There is no worse sound on the planet than that of someone else chewing.
Next time you get annoyed by a satisfied smacking at the dinner table, just remember that you don’t chew completely silently all the time either.
27. Mansplaining. Or Womansplaining. Or Any Kind of Splaining.
The trouble with all these forms of X-splaining is that perpetrators never know they’re doing it. Lack of awareness is a necessary ingredient in all forms of splaining.
That means we could all be X-splaining all the time, making friends and strangers alike totally hate us, and we wouldn’t ever know unless someone called us out. And then we’d be like, “What? Nuh-uh. Don’t be so sensitive.”
28. Forgetting to Flush
Gross, yes. Gross. But hey, we’re busy. We all make mistakes. But if your roommate leaves a little gift for you in the bathroom, you’ll probably be tempted to start filing an eviction notice. Wait, can you even evict a roommate? Asking for a friend.