Similarly to how you can learn a lot about a person through knowing what they like, you can also learn a lot through knowing what they don’t. Here are a few things that grind my gears, with the reasons why.
Black & white thinkers – EVERYTHING has nuance, so when people hold an opinion on a topic that clearly comes from toeing a political line and ignores the lived experiences of other people, I really struggle to believe they’re not just parrots for a particular agenda with no ability to think for themselves.
People who exclude ANY letters from the LGBTQIA+ umbrella – This one is pretty self-explanatory. Every identity is valid. If it’s not illegal or harmful to anyone else, what the fuck does it matter to you how someone exists in this world?
Misandry dressed up as feminism – I find it extremely difficult to refer to myself as a feminist despite technically being one because of the loud minority of “feminists” who are trying to oppress men instead of raise women up.
Wappies – This is a Dutch term for conspiracy theorists who believe dangerous bullshit that puts others at risk. I don’t think I need to explain why they’re on this list.
Using religion to determine rules of a society – Religious freedom is great. Believe what you want. But the moment you try to force that stuff on anyone else who doesn’t hold the same beliefs, you can get the fuck out.
Nuchterheid – This is a Dutch concept which directly translates to “sobriety”. It means being pragmatic, unemotional, and “logical”. I wouldn’t say this is by itself is a bad thing, but when it’s applied to things like pandemics, it becomes a pretty solid base for eugenics and generally treating people like shit.
Racism/xenophobia – Another one that should explain itself. “Othering” people based on arbitrary shit like where they or their ancestors are from is weird. Stop doing it.
Ableism – Again, “othering” people based upon things which are out of their control is weird. Every single disabled person has value to them that ableists can’t comprehend. Just because it’s not what they (or society at large) values, doesn’t mean it’s not there.
People who misunderstand centrism – Centrism is NOT the centre of left and right. It’s taking the stuff that makes sense FROM the left and right and disregarding the stuff that doesn’t. It’s not about “compromising” on human rights because capitalism is king or whatever other ignorant shit gets said about it.
Misusing words just because they’re commonly misused by others – Holland is not a country, introverts/asocial/shy people are not “antisocial”, and if you're "perusing" something, you're not skimming over it quickly. I will die on this hill.
People who assume that fat = slow – I am married to an almost 2m (6’5”) tall man. The speed at which I walk is faster than most. If you see me and calculate that you need to overtake me in order to not be stuck behind a slow walker and I hear you huffing and puffing to get past only to slow down right in front of me, I will be pulling a mind finger right at the back of your damn head.
J.K. Rowling/Harry Potter – I was never a Harry Potter fan. I read the first book and it didn’t click with me. Then when my friends started becoming Potterheads, I tried again. It still didn’t click. I started feeling a little bit of resentment when I couldn’t participate in the discourse about it. When it was revealed that the author was a piece of shit, I finally felt vindicated in my dislike of the series and glad I hadn’t developed the same attachment as my peers.
Taylor Swift – While I generally don’t mind her music, the very meticulously planned nature of her career is sketchy to me. I became an all out “hater” when she decided to come out as a “gay icon” after the whole Kim and Kanye thing to rehabilitate her image. It just rubbed me the wrong way, and I’m on board with the idea that she is a 🐍.
Stan culture – Not being able to express your opinions about something popular without a stan finding you and jumping down your throat about it is kinda terrifying. While I remember being obsessed with boybands as a teenager, I don’t think I ever felt like I needed to violently defend them to anyone who simply didn’t like them.
Gatekeeping – If someone doesn’t fit your idea of what someone who likes a particular thing should look/be like and you think it ruins your own enjoyment of whatever it is, that’s a problem that lies entirely with you. Keep it to yourself.
Fireworks – An extremely frivolous and antisocial waste of money that fucks with the environment, causes unnecessary strain on the healthcare system, and scares the shit out of animals and those with noise-based anxiety/PTSD.
Spring/summer – The moment outdoor temperatures climb above 18°C (64°C), I start to malfunction. My fatigue gets worse, my brain fog gets worse, my mental health gets worse, life in general gets worse. I will never understand why people enjoy heat, and I will ESPECIALLY never understand people who are happy that climate change is warming everything up.
Satay sauce – The only food I flat out refuse to eat. For whatever reason, the idea of spicy peanut butter makes me gag. Peanut butter = yum! Spices = fine. Together? What fresh hell is this?!
Social generations and the confusion/lack of consensus about them – Calling anyone younger than Boomers "Millennials", calling people born after 1985 "elder Millennials" ('86-'91 = peak Millennial), Gen Z bullying Millennials instead of Gen X which should be the natural order of things, Gen X being forgotten in most discussions about generations: all things that annoy the hell out of me.
Ed Sheeran – This one is mostly a joke because on a visit to New Zealand, his concert caused traffic jams while we were trying to drive through Auckland. Now whenever he comes up, I’m inclined to say “Oh, the ginger dickhead?”. Not really his fault, but I’m a bitter Betty.