I ran across a really interesting post over on one of my favorite blogs, Afthead. The post was spurred by a challenge to list ten things one loves coupled with ten things one hates. I really enjoyed reading this list and decided to try my hand at one of my own. Head over to Afthead‘s to read the post that inspired me (look around while you’re there!), and check out the one that inspired her.
When I first decided to work up my own love/hate post, I anticipated that coming up with ten things I had polarized feelings toward would be easy-peasy, but it took quite a bit of time to find a list I was happy with. Then, typical of the perverse nature of the universe, I suddenly had a list of eleven that I just couldn’t pare down. I also found that I waxed a bit long-winded in the writing. I considered breaking this up into more than just the one post, but hey, you don’t have to read it all at once, or even all ever–but please do! So here, in an order that is probably logical only to me, is my list.
I Love fresh tomatoes…BUT…Hate Summer: The only thing summer has going for it in my book is the harvest of fresh vegetables. I love fresh heirloom tomatoes: German Queen, Cherokee Purple, Mr. Stripey, and those are just the ones that are easy to lay hands on. Garden-fresh cucumbers and corn are heaven. Unfortunately, they’re only around in the hellish season. This one is also a problem for me because I’m a teacher! Feel my pain! I’m off in the summer, but I just hate hot weather. I hate the garish glare of the sun; I hate bugs (see #3); I hate humidity; I hate that my air conditioning never kicks off; I being held prisoner in my home by the vicious sun, glaring down with its malevolent gaze; I hate mowing the yard. I. Hate. Summer.
I Love being cool…BUT…Hate the sound of a fan: If you read my rant about summer, you already know how I feel about being hot, so it’s probably is no surprise that I love being cool. Being cool is so nice; you can snuggle up and sip a nice cup of hot tea, cuddle with your sweetie, pile up under your favorite blanket. But when it is not naturally cool, I loathe the incessant sound of a fan. It makes no matter whether it is a high pitched whine or a low frequency thrum; it’s a form of torture the UN would outlaw if they heard it through my ears. I know. I know. I’m a weirdo. It’s white noise. People turn on fans to block out other more irritating sounds (as if), but there it is. As far as I know, there may be only one other person on the planet who feels as strongly about the sound of a fan as I do, and we weirdos have to stick together, so I’m recommending that you read “The Hero Houseguest,” a personal essay which incorporates the horror of an unstoppable fan into a deeply thoughtful and at times hilarious read.
I Love classic, classy country music…BUT…Hate modern, trashy naso-country: I’m not treading any new territory here when I bring up Patsy Cline’s “She’s Got You” (#1 on the charts) as the quintessential classic country song, but just think about those lyrics a minute. ” I’ve got your memory, or has it got me?/ I really don’t know, but I know it won’t let me be.” How beautifully haunting is that? For one you might be less familiar with, look at Glenn Campbell’s “Yesterday when I Was Young“ (also recorded and charting by Roy Clark of Hee Haw fame). “I ran so fast that time/ And youth at last ran out; /I never stopped to think/ What life was all about,/And every conversation/ That I can now recall/ Concerns itself with me/And nothing else at all.” That has the depth of poetry, and the sweeping orchestration would be at home not just in country, but any genre. (By the way, I quoted these lyrics from memory.)
Now, let’s go to the other side of the tracks and look at some of what has charted this first week of August 2015. Charting at #4 check out the lyrics of this squalid serenade “House Party” by Sam Hunt. “Whatever you got on, girl, stay in it./You ain’t gotta leave the house to have a good time./I’m a bring the good time home to you.” Oh, my, my heart’s a flutter. What girl wouldn’t die to hear those words? At #16 by Brad Paisley is this trashy tune, “By this time Friday night/I’ll be done with my third can/Of cold Bud Light/And I’ll be crushin’ it.” (In case you didn’t guess, the title is “Crushin’ It.”) And just in case you still weren’t sure that today’s country isn’t purveyor of the highest ideologies, here are a few lines from #10 “Buy Me a Boat” by Chris Janson. “I ain’t rich, but I damn sure wanna be./
Working like a dog all day, ain’t working for me./ I wish I had a rich uncle that’d kick the bucket.” Yeeesss. Don’t we all wish our relatives would DIE? What? I mean, seriously what? (Thanks to azlyrics for these new, trashy lyrics. I just hope my computer doesn’t lose RAM or something from looking them up; I think I lost a few IQ points.)
I Love butterflies…BUT…Hate bugs: Yeah, I know butterflies are bugs, but they’re just so pretty. I hate the gnats that fly up my nose all summer long; I hate anything that stings; I hate those dive-bombing beetles that fly into my face and scare the pee out of me. (I would put spiders here because they are the creepiest things on the planet, but I know they are not bugs; they’re worse.) Butterflies just meander around, not stinging anybody, never working up enough force to smack me in the face, and they’re far too big to fit up my nose. And they’re so pretty.
I Love streaming television…BUT… Hate commercial television: A few years ago, I took the plunge and dumped my cable. This was a bug step for me because as you know if you read about my dirty secret that I LOVE television. But because I love television, I just could not take the commercial interruptions any more. I mean a little over one-third of any show’s time on regular network is devoted to commercials. That’s fair enough because they make shows “free” except for the exorbitant cost of cable. The problem was just when I’d start to get into some program…some character is about to have an epiphany…WHAM…It’s time to explore toilet paper options. So, now I subscribe to a few services, buy the shows I like from Amazon streaming, and watch what I want, when I want, with no commercials. And I did some math: It’s costing me about the same yearly as my just barely about basic cable.
I Love Star Trek Enterprise…BUT…Hate its theme song: Speaking of television, I’m a Trekkie. I love Star Trek. TOS, TNG, DS9, and especially the lesser-known and less popular Enterprise. It is full of great characters and tells the story of the early days of the Federation. It does, however, have a flaw. It has the worst theme song in the history of television theme songs. I. Loathe. That. Song. It has no grandeur; it’s just some guy faking sincerity with a fake husky voice. The song over the end credits is fine. Why not just use that? It’s the only Star Trek series to have a theme song with lyrics, and it was a mistake. I skip past that awful song every time.
I Love George Clooney…BUT…Hate Matthew McConaughey: ~sigh~ George Clooney is so handsome! (It’s ok. My husband knows about my little crush.) He’s funny and suave, looks great in a suit or overalls a’la O Brother Where Art Thou?, and is well-spoken and capable of bathing. By sharp contrast, McConaughey always looks like he needs to bathe and wash his hair. I also hate his accent. No matter what role I’ve seen him in, he just looks like a guy who ought to be driving around in a windowless, white van. He makes my skin crawl. As a sci-fi aficionado, I think I would have liked the new picture, Interstellar, but he seriously actually creeps me out. (He doesn’t remind me of a former stalker or anything; he’s just sleazy looking.)
I Love Urban Fantasy…BUT… Hate dragon fantasy: I’m a fan of Kim Harrison and Kelley Armstrong to name two of my most recognizable urban fantasy binges. If I see a dragon on the cover of a book, that’s all I need to know, though. Even if one of those two wrote it, I’m just not interested.
I Love Doctor Who Seasons 1-7…BUT…Hate Season 8: When I was younger, I watched some of the classic Doctor Who, but it wasn’t until the relaunch with Matt Smith that I really got hooked. Thanks to streaming services (wink, wink), I went back to the Christopher Eccleston and binge watched everything and enjoyed all of it, so I was excited to see season 8…until I saw season 8. Belch. Gone was the whimsy (That’s important to me.), gone was a doctor who seemed to care… about anything, and gone was a reason to watch. It’s not Peter Capaldi’s fault; I think he’s fine. The show just seems to have lost its soul. I made it about a third of the way through, but I can’t even begin to imagine a beautiful and touching episode like “Vincent and the Doctor” in this season.
I Love sedans…BUT…Hate giant SUVs: Now, if you read my story about being run down by a woman without a valid driver’s license, you might have seen this one coming. The car that hit mine was a ginormous SUV with one person in it; the car I couldn’t see past was a ginormous SUV with one person in it; my sweet car is a Nissan Altima. I’m not going on a rant about gas mileage (mine gets 30 mpg), or foreign oil, or any of that. The giant SUVs bug me because if you drive your basic sedan, you can’t see over, past, or around them. Your best best is seeing under them. There are tons of them on the road where I live. When I go on vacation, there are far fewer, and driving is so much saner; I can’t help but draw some conclusions.
I Love my husband…AND…Hate employers who lay off workers without even a day’s notice. This happened to my husband about a week ago after he had worked there for over 20 years. Yes, exactly that happened. My husband is the most honest, ethical, respectable man I know, yet this employer up and laid him off as if afraid that if he saw the lay off coming, my husband might sabotage files, set fire to the building, or quit with unfinished work, leaving them in a bind. It’s like his
boss former boss was afraid of how my husband would react, but anyone who has known my husband for more than a few weeks (say 20 years or so), should have known that he would leave with grace, dignity, and integrity. His boss former boss cited a lack of upcoming projects (which I’m absolutely sure is true), but the problem is that he gave no notice, no severance, not even any help in knowing what papers to fill out (He was the only one in the office who had privy to that information.), and no fare thee well. The Company had gone through slow times often during my husband’s 20 year tenure there, so he could not have been expected to have anticipated this. To make matters worse, my husband uses computers and software in his job, and The Company did not use industry standard equipment, thus hamstringing him in his attempts to now–suddenly–find work. (Had he had some notice, he could have–as he now is–been working on refreshing his familiarity with the standard software.) Making matters still worse, his boss former boss left the country for a week immediately (seriously mere hours) after laying him off, meaning that once the shock wore off, my husband couldn’t clarify the inevitable questions that came up. Is is just me, or was that a tacky thing to do? (Disclaimer: This is my bitterness, not his; he is a much better person than I am.)