YOU know know what annoys me? When you’re standing in a queue for a cash machine and the person in front doesn’t have their card ready.
That annoys me beyond any rational or reasonable measure.
You – yes, you ahead of me – you know what’s going to happen, you know how it works, you know NatWest hasn’t programmed a curve-ball into the screen.
So, why not do the whole handbag-rummaging – the removal of keys, change and contraception routine – before the machine is practically screaming to be used, and everyone behind you (or me at least) is hoping someone comes and mugs you just to speed things up?
Yeah. I find it irritating.
Here’s why I bring it up: On Saturday I’m waiting for this girl (it’s always a girl) to finish what feels like a month’s worth of complex business banking, and suddenly I wonder why I’m even annoyed. I have nowhere to be, the sun’s out, and she’s got a tidy backside.
And, in a moment of clarity, I realise it’s for no other reason than because, actually, I’m turning into a cantankerous old git.
Or, as my nana might have said, I’m turning into my grandad.
Because anyone can find the energy to be irritated by the big things – the coalition, the economy or Adrian Chiles’ face perhaps – but it takes real hard-honed irascible talent to be ill-humoured about the everyday.
My friends, I believe I have such talent.
So, let me say loud and proud, if you’ve ever phoned ahead to tell someone you’re sending them an email, you’ve annoyed me; if you’ve ever let your kids run about a restaurant you’ve annoyed me; if you’ve ever put your luggage on a train seat while other passengers stand, gone topless in the city centre or asked for a decaffeinated frappuccino you’ve annoyed me.
More? Don’t mind if I do.
Those self-service supermarket check-outs? Nothing more irritating than being told there’s an unexpected item in the bagging area when clearly – quite clearly – there isn’t.
It vexes me there were only 12 episodes of Fawlty Towers but three series and a movie of The Inbetweeners. I mean, just what sort of sick world do we live in?
See also that The Rolling Stones are still going strong but The Smiths split after less than five years. Where’s the justice?
Jamie Oliver irritates me. Mainly because I’ve never yet cooked one of his 30-minute meals in under 90. It can’t be done Jamie. It just can’t be done.
The automated options when you phone big companies too. These days I just keep pressing one until I’m speaking to a human. Then I normally make my complaint and get asked for my password. And that annoys me because I can never remember it.
Piers Morgan makes the list because he’s loathsome, unattractive and talentless but has two million Twitter followers. I’m all those things so why am I still struggling for 400?
And the weather right now too. What happens when it’s sunny? I’ll complain it’s too hot. You’re allowed to be contradictory when you’re cantankerous, right?
I presume so anyway. That girl at the cash machine? She turned round, lovely as you like, and apologised for taking so long.
I said: ‘No rush’.
Well, you don’t want to come across like a moaner, do you?