Mz. Mannerz: The Cow in The Parking Lot

Oh man!  It’s time for another edition of Mz. Mannerz!  Drop that Crunchwrap Supreme, put on some pants for heaven’s sake, and let’s DO THIS THING!

One of the things I’ve come to terms with through my personal studies in anger management is that people rarely get out of bed in the morning and say, “What can I do to go out of my way to really annoy people today?”

That sort of malicious attitude is rare, unless we’re talking about Justin Bieber, Justin Bieber, or Justin Bieber’s face.

I try to live my life in a proactive manner, so I figure it’s better to read up on anger management before a court orders me to do so.  Some books are better than others, but I recently read a great book on the topic called The Cow in The Parking Lot by Leonard Scheff and Susan Edmiston.  It did a really great job of re-framing the annoying things people do – the things that make me nearly implode with rage every day.  I highly recommend it if you’re a pissy little so-and-so.  It’s completely changed my perspective.

I mean, I still get angry when someone makes me wait with my engine idling while they spend three minutes backing into a parking space when it would have taken ten seconds if they just parked front-in, but I don’t let it ruin my day anymore.

Most of the time.

It’s hard to live in a state of outrage your entire life and then just quit cold-turkey.

Most people are just bumming around, doing whatever they do and not even thinking about it.  Like cows in a parking lot.  If you saw a cow doing any of the annoying things that people do, you’d probably be tickled by it and say, “Oh man!  Check out that cow!  Isn’t that hilarious?”

People aren’t going out of their way to do things to personally annoy you.  They’re just doing them and not even really realizing it.

To that end, I’ve compiled the list below, outlining some of these annoying things that people may not “realize” that they’re doing.  You know, as a “courtesy”.  To let them “know”.




And please – feel free to add to it in the comments.  There are tons of things I left out.  Keep it light, you filthy beasts.  I have no desire to argue foreign policy.  As it is, for the past three years I haven’t been able to turn on the news without having to take a tranquilizer and breathe into a paper bag.

Here we go!

a.  Tapping your foot on a clackety floor, tapping a pencil on a desk, tapping your 80s acrylic porno nails on a counter, or tapping any other thing on a tappy surface.  I know a person who does this – sometimes for hours on-end – while I’m ten feet away trying to dissect complicated contracts, and it destroys my concentration and makes me want to scream and/or dig a hole and lie in it.  I have literally broken into a cold sweat and had to leave the room, it’s that disruptive.

b.  Bum-rushing an elevator door to get in the moment the door opens, and then acting surprised that someone is coming out of the elevator as you slam directly into them.  “Oh!  Sorry!”  Do you honestly think that there’s NO CHANCE somebody might be getting out of that elevator?

c.  Along those lines, walking down a crowded sidewalk, going at the same speed at everyone else, and then stopping dead in your tracks so that everyone behind you slams into each other.  Bonus points if you do this on a staircase in an airport or a subway, where people are also carrying large objects and trying to get somewhere in a timely fashion.

d.  Leaving someone a voicemail that says, “Oh!  Looks like I missed you.  I’ll try you back in a little while!”  Do you have any idea the amount of time and steps and button-pushing and secret codes and shit I have to dial into my phone in order to check my voicemail, only to receive a message that says you’ll try me again later?  The only voicemail worth leaving is, “The police know.  You need to pack up that chatty parrot of yours and leave town NOW.”

e.  Walking into a restroom with ten empty stalls, and then taking the one directly next to mine.  Don’t YOU enjoy personal space? I know I certainly do.  Choose ANY OTHER STALL besides the one directly next to a person – especially if there are ten open stalls.  It reminds me of every time I go to the beach and there’s nobody for miles, and right after I set my stuff up, the most irritating people on the planet come walking down the sand and plop their piles of stuff down six inches away from me.  Go sit ANYWHERE that’s not six inches away from me.  You have a mile of open beach, for god’s sake.

f.  The fact that I can’t go to the movies in 2019 without people talking at full volume in the theater is mind-boggling to me.  Mind-boggling.  I wish theaters would replace their polite “Please be respectful of others by not talking during the movie” with something waaaaay more blatant.  Something like, “If you talk in the movie – which has NEVER been an okay thing to do – it means you are a jerkface dillhole and everyone in here will hate your guts until the end of time, so shut up.  No, really, we’re not kidding here.  It’s two hours.  Watch the movie and SHUT UP.”

g.  Pushing a shopping cart in a forward motion while having your head turned completely the other way.  Do you think the store is so large, so vast, so vacant, that’s there’s no possibility that you’ll hit someone with your cart because you’re not watching where you’re going?  Same for rounding corners with your cart at 80mph and acting surprised that there’s someone on the other side when you almost mow them down.

“But Mz. Mannerz!  I didn’t know that was annoying!”



If you’re the kind of person who enjoys the warm feeling of superiority when someone gets a trivia question about The Love Boat wrong, have an ax to grind with people who describe themselves as “bubbly”, or are just looking for newer and better ways to pretend you’re working while you’re at work, click the “Follow” button on the side here and you’ll get an email any time I post something on this godforsaken blog, usually about once a week.  Sometimes it’s twice a week, but only when I’m feeling particularly sassy and/or have run out of chicken fingers dipping sauce options.

It’s one of my personal favorites and I’d like to dedicate it to a young man who doesn’t think he’s seen anything good today.” – Ferris Bueller

60 thoughts on “Mz. Mannerz: The Cow in The Parking Lot

  1. While I agree with most of the above, I have to admit I’m a nail drummer. It’s habitual and I’m not sure I could stop if I wanted to. Let it be known that I do not drum in the office though… I’m annoying, but don’t have a death wish.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The term “nail drummer” just made me picture a tiny drumset that you play with your nails, and if someone’s not already making this device, I need to go rent an engineering lab immediately!

      Liked by 5 people

  2. First read through I read it as “I like to live my life in a PROVACATIVE manner”.

    I used to be a tapper, but my mom beat it out of me and now I only do it when I want to make her crazy.

    I don’t use elevators, the highest building in Missoula, Montana is 5 floors. Plus they are scary.

    Luckily I live in Missoula, Montana, where sidewalk crowds are small and I can walk around them, I am a fast walker, just ask my husband. He is the cute bald guy 4 blocks behind me.

    Literally the only voice mail I ever get: “OMG you are harder to get ahold of than a CEO, why the fuck do you not answer your phone?” This is from my kids.

    Restrooms: Someone should write a book of etiquette. I had to look up the spelling of etiquette.

    Movies: Repeat offenders should be forced to sit in chairs that deliver electric shock.

    Shopping cart: GUILTY. I am a fast walker. I make up for crashing into people by offering to reach the item they are staring at on the high shelf they can’t reach.

    Love to you, Maggie!

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Haha I thought you spelled it that way on purpose because “VACA” in Spanish is cow and was a pun because of the title of the post, and I snickered to myself because I thought that was a pretty rad and subtle pun.

        Liked by 4 people

    1. I actually resisted getting a cellphone for a really long time, until someone actually gave me one “as a gift” because they were so tired of never being able to reach me.
      That was by design on my part! If I’m not home, then I don’t want to talk to anyone on the phone!

      My mother is a pro at being difficult to reach if she’s not home. She doesn’t even keep her cellphone turned on, and never even set up voicemail for it!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I try to remember “most people aren’t against you, they’re for themselves.”

    But most people are also really effing irritating.

    My additions to the list: calls and desk drop-bys that could have been emails; spelling someone’s name wrong when it’s literally in the email address; refusing to recognize that white/straight privilege doesn’t mean your life is easy, it just mean those qualities haven’t actively made your life worse.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. That reminds me of the people who send you an email, then walk over to you three seconds later and say, “Did you get the email I just sent you?” and then tell you everything that was in the email!

      Liked by 3 people

    2. OMG yes. My name is IN MY SIGNATURE LINE and as a fun bonus, my work email address is literally just my first and last name. How is it so hard to spell it correctly??

      Also yes to the white privilege. I have gotten in near-brawls over this. I don’t understand the refusal to understand this concept.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. I’m always amazed at people who mispronounce my last name. It’s Dove. Like the bird. Dove. I can’t tell you how many people scrunch up their faces when they say, “Dohh-vay?” IT’S DOVE. Dove is the only way Dove is pronounced!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. YUP. A colleague, who makes a super big deal out of saying hello to everyone he sees because he’s cares so much about people can’t not write to AnnE and one day this introverted Ann is going to kick him in the throat.

        Metaphorically. He’s pretty tall.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. OMG Love these, and yes they are ALL TRUE! For fox sake man peeps who do most of these (I say most because I read that River is a nail drummer, with her tiny drum set for her nails, lol) are just oblivious to everyone else around them.
    People that talk during movies should be banned, some guy should just walk up to then with a huge flashlight and shine it in their stupid face and tell them to leave! Then get their ID’s, scan them and put them on a “nix-list” for six months until they’ve learned their lesson. Or people who use their phones during a movie, like we can’t see the strong glow of your smart phone shining throughout the dammed theater, assholes!

    Or those people using those shopping carts and stopping mid-aisle at the store, because their either on their phone, looking for something or just plain STUPID!! If you’re going to stop mid-aisle because you think no one else is behind you, you deserve to be hit in the fucking ankle/Achilles tendon with a goddamned shopping cart for being a complete and utter douche bag!!

    On that note I got into an argument the other day at Walmart with a woman doing just that, there were four of us behind her in the cereal aisle and she was just there, stopped mid-aisle and talking on the phone to someone asking them what kind of fucking cereal they wanted. I cleared my throat and she didn’t budge. So what did I do? I moved her fucking cart and hit her fat ass with it, then she turned around and gave me a dirty look. I just looked at her and said “stop being inconsiderate, there are other people trying to shop, you’re not the only one in this store you know.” She called me a bitch, I called her a cunt and she looked at me in disbelief. Funny how that “C” word always trumps bitch in any situation. Okay, I’m done my rant is officially over, lol. Great post Maggie!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh my god, I wish I could follow you around Walmart – I would have been rolling on the floor laughing at you taking her down! You’re one bad mofo, woman. I wish I could have you with me when I venture to the produce market during snowbird season here in Florida!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Those old broads don’t go down without a fight! When they’re not reducing grocery store cashiers to tears, they’re driving their giant Lincolns through the plate glass window of the store. They start arriving next month, and I’m already bracing for impact.

        Liked by 2 people

  5. Yes to ALL OF THIS. Especially the voicemail thing. You know who leaves voicemails? Narcissists, that’s who. There is no reason ever to leave me a freaking voicemail. Text me like a normal person and be like “yo bitch call me back” or whatever. Or, text me in the first place. I know it’s possible to call me on my phone but I’d rather not use it for that.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Probably! Working a phone all day is like having your soul vacuumed out. I used to answer a busy 25-line phone at an office, and even years after the fact, just the sound of a ringing office phone out in public makes my heart race with anxiety.

        Liked by 2 people

  6. UGH b and e for SURE. Also along the same principle with e – parking lots. THERE ARE ELEVENTY THOUSAND EMPTY SPACES, much closer to the door, and you park RIGHT NEXT TO ME where I am trying to enjoy five minutes of peace and quiet outside my home (eat my crunchwrap surpreme in peace) and now you’ve made it all weird and awkward and I’m self conscious because WTF is that sour cream in my hair?
    Also now I”m noticing that you’re right next to me in your van with no windows SO I HAVE TO MOVE NOW, #WhyIHatePeople

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I thought I was the only one who was driven crazy by this. I often eat lunch in my car in a nice, sunny parking lot somewhere, only to have someone pull up RIGHT NEXT TO ME, windows down, staring at me while I’m trying to destroy a Double Decker taco. I don’t even know how many times I’ve just had to back out of a space and just go park somewhere else!


  7. Er, AHEM…some of your readers ARE ‘snowbirds” (who never fly south because they’re POOR snowbirds, but they embrace the concept with zeal).. also we (snowbirds) have short attention spans so comments might seem fragmented but usually we get to the point within ten minutes.. Um. Okay then. Up here in the frozen north (it was 20 degrees last night so ‘frozen’ is an accurate term)..the old broads out number the young ones and have an attitude akin to Kathy Bates’ in that movie where she backs repeatedly into the car of some smarmy 20 something and then looks the young woman in the eye and says “But I have better insurance!” (maybe you had to be there). Anyway. I laughed uproariously at this post and am going to share it via a reblog with all my other old broad and old dude friends. Because they’ll laugh loudly too. We’re ALL guilty of being the quintessential douche bag now and then. And ‘dill hole”? I think I peed myself. That phrase is going into my personal bag of ‘vaguely nasty phrases that aren’t obvious”. BWAHHAHAHHA!! Thanks for a belly laugh!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Snowbirds definitely have the right idea, weather-wise. If I could have northeastern temps all summer and southeastern temps all winter? I’d be all over that! It seems like the perfect way to live. I’m always surprised at the ones who are so punchy – they live in perfect weather 365 days a year! 🙂

      That being said, I’m already so angry at 43, so I figure by the time I hit 60, I’ll definitely be in prison for going nuts on someone who walks into me when I’m getting out of the elevator. It’s only a matter of time. It seems like every year, my patience grows a little thinner! It’s probably from living in the Florida heat year-round!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Yes yes yes. And yes.

    + People who call back with “I saw you called” then wait for me to tell them why EVEN THOUGH I left them a detailed voicemail (as civilized people do). My husband is a repeat offender for this. I’m only half joking when I tell him one day I’ll say call me back after you’ve listened to my message.

    + People (again, read: hubby) who have no earthly idea where their cell phone is. I’m not a stalker. I don’t call unless it’s important and even then I’ll try text first, but neither works when you don’t keep up with your freaking phone!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes to both!! It’s like when you send a detailed report to someone and they walk over and say, “So what was in that report you sent me?” ARGHHHHHH!!!!!

      Related, people who call and need your help on something, so you help them, and then they say, “Ok – thanks! Because when I came in this morning and I couldn’t open the file you sent, I wasn’t sure what do about the blah blah…”

      Yes, I know. You explained it to me already. Then I solved your problem. We don’t need to go over the problem again!


  9. In this little tourist town it is foot traffic and auto traffic. Pedestrians have a well marked crosswalk at every intersection, yet half of them think it is too far to go all the way to the end of the block so they jump out from between parked cars. Sometimes I want to give them a little bump just to make a point. Then there are the leaf lookers this time of year. Instead of pulling over off the highway they would rather go 35 mph on a 55 mph road. God forbid a moose or bear should be in sight, then they just stop dead in the middle of the highway. It is often difficult for the transport trucks to stop quickly. I just assume the tourists have a death wish. Maybe they really do wake up thinking, “I wonder how many locals I can piss off today?”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Jaywalkers drive me insane. They make it so dangerous for everyone on the road!
      We get them all the time here in Florida, especially over by the beach. The worst part is the people who stop their cars for them when they’re standing on the side of the road and then wave them across. Our crosswalks at the beach REQUIRE you to stop at them to let pedestrians cross. I’m okay with that! Walk your butt over to the crosswalk and I’ll be happy to stop! But if you’re standing twenty feet away from it? You’re on your own.


  10. Our local movie theater has a pre-movie message they play every time. There’s always a different funny video bit, but then it ends with their (locally) classic: “Don’t talk during the movie, or we’ll take your ass out.” It is my favorite.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Oh, and add this to the list: People who refuse to take the right of way while driving. You’re at an intersection, and they CLEARLY have the right of way, but they wait and then they wave the other person on. Stop screwing up the traffic patterns! You’re not being polite and magnanimous; you’re being annoying as shit and messing up the intended organization.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. OMG, not like I should admit this… but I was driving & using my cell … it was my MOM!!! I was pulling out of an alley that had little visibility, and I had to poke out between parked cars. I totally stopped after creeping forward, but this guy got pissed off anyway at me (after he’d passed me) and started waving his cell OUT HIS WINDOW to prove to me that I’m the asshole… then proceeds to slow the fuck down to an ‘almost’ stop, where he’s got NO stop sign, and almost gets hit because of it. CAR-ma. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh, there’s no greater joy than when someone passes you in a jerky fashion and karma immediately responds to it. Having them get stuck behind someone going even slower, someone who’s car is pouring black smoke out of the tailpipe, getting pulled over by a cop. I adore those little happenings. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  12. Repetitive noise, like tapping, makes me crazy… I worked with a dude who had a stack of about 20 poker chips on his desk. While on calls, he would pick them up and drop them one at a time to reform the stack. Pling, pling, pling. Over and over again. All the freaking day long. He was making the entire office nuts. I didn’t even sit near him, yet I was ready to shove them down his throat. I had to fight with 3 members of management in order to get them to make him stop. I do not go into battle often, but there was no way that was going to continue if I was still walking on this planet.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I would have ended up quitting the job. I applaud you standing your ground! Hell, even when I’m playing poker, those incessant chip-clinkers drive me bonkers. Repetitive noises are like absolute torture for me. Can’t take ’em!


      1. I have taught the kids I sit for not to say the SAME DAMN THING 75 plus times. If they start repeating, be it a noise or a word, I give them the stink eye and say ‘TOO MANY TIMES!’ A few of those and they get the message. I consider this my contribution to the future of society – start them young on learning not to annoy people. Clearly their parents can’t handle the task.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I commend you for your service to humanity, you good samaritan, you. Start ’em young!! We were sitting at dinner the other night and a kid had some kind of toy that made a noise, and she must have pressed the button on it, I don’t know, six hundred times over the course of an hour?
        Everyone at their table just seemed like they didn’t hear it at all, meanwhile I’m one table over breaking into a cold sweat it’s stressing me out so much.


  13. I am so enjoying this. I do not work in an office setting – but I did tears ago. My boss left stuff he wanted me to do on my chair when I was away from my desk or not yet at work. I was like, huh? My tiny cubicle was not so overrun with stuff that he coukd not put in say MY INBOX. Glad to have left the corporate world- or there might have been bloodshed. Now I babysit for people’s kids. Guess what- most young parents are stupid and annoying so that sucks.

    From the mom angle: hate the ongoing bday parties. I rarely throw a kid party for my offspring and when I do we tend to do ‘in lieu of gifts bring canned goods for food pantry’ or something. Translation- I do not want any more shit in my house. A kid in my son’s 8th grade class thinks he is the bomb. Really he is just an ass wipe. And yet EVERY OCTOBER I get to buy him a gift. 8th grade kids do NOT need parties.

    I hate parents who cannot keep their kid quiet at a store or on an airplane. Not talking fussy baby- talking bout the kid with the video game blaring in the seat behind me so I cannit sleep during flight.

    People who respond ‘all’ to group texts. I DO NOT CARE why your kid cannot make practice tonight. Dear God – get a brain. Irish dancing moms at Curlts school have a fb chat thing. I do not need to have my phone explode bc someone wants to know when registration $ is due and everyone weighs in. Some just to say LOL. REALLY.

    Most of the time I hate people who drive like idiots. Hey you in the right lane – pull up 6 inches so I can TURN RIGHT here!

    My kids live in fear of the day when I embarrass them because someone has ticked me off.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can only imagine the world of annoyance that opens when you’re a parent – the group text BS alone would make me drive into a river. And now there’s that thing where you get a text every time someone “likes” someone’s text in the group.

      I’m always surprised by the every year birthday parties that happen nowadays, too. We got parties every now and then we were kids, but most birthdays were spent around the kitchen table, immediate family only!

      I’ve noticed the every year birthday extravaganza creeping into adults’ lives, too. I don’t get it. You turned 36. Who cares? It’s not a holiday. I’ll be glad to come to your 40th! I vote for significant birthday parties only!


  14. My biggest complaint, EVER, is parents who let their children run completely wild in restaurants and stores. I mean, pulling clothes off shelves, running head on into other people. Then, the parents just look at you and shrug their shoulders, like, oh well.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. We don’t have kids, but I had to tell neighbors that apparently thought more of our relationship than I did, to please stop inviting us to their kid’s b-day parties. I am absolutely not going to waste hours at a Dora the Explorer party. Nor do I want to buy your kid a gift. When did this become acceptable? Only people bringing a kid to the party should have to suffer through it.

    But not attending those fit right in with the resolution that I made when I turned 40. I would no longer attend bridal or baby showers. I am happy for those folks. I send a lovely gift via some delivery source, but I no longer wish to compete to see who can create the best wedding dress out of toilet paper.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I tell ya, the best part about being over 40 is that I don’t get invited to baby and bridal showers anymore. It’s usually divorce parties, which are way, way more fun! The mere mention of the words “baby shower” makes me start to twitch involuntarily. How many times can you sit through four hours of “Aww! I wish these came in MY size!” every time the mom-to-be opens a tiny pair of shoes before you just scream and run from the building?


  16. You are so funny 🙂 Congrats on your latest published works! High-fives all around! Here’s one: in my experience the public library’s quiet study rooms are the absolute loudest areas in the building, because folks go in there together and make conversation and apparently jokes, too. Loudly! Why??? I just want to pass my effing accounting exam!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks!! I’m having the most fun chatting with everyone on this one today – it’s therapeutic to all let off steam together! Of course, that’s also how angry mobs get started… 🙂

      I think some people see a sign that says “Quiet Area” and take it as a personal challenge to be as loud as possible. Look at how rebellious I am! I yell in quiet areas!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, I have noticed an uptick in general lawlessness over the past couple of years 😉 You picked a fun topic. It’s the letting off steam, with humor, I think, that helps keeps things in perspective 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  17. commenting again even though I’m starting to feel like your personal stalker. Crunchwrap Supreme is the BEST. And Ferris Buehler is too.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. People who talk with their hands – if I could even get to how irritating this is to me. The stupid guy on the news who gesticulates every single word with a hand gesture – no matter that he is talking about nothing in particular (which is what Australian news is mostly made up of these days (cheap journalism, road accidents and other mundane stuff). If I put on a youtube video and the first 5 minutes is made up of two hands with nail polish flashing across the screen (that’s before I even listen to the sound of the voice, really really undoes me. What is wrong with everyone? Great topic as always. Thank you for allowing me to vent for a while.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It seems like YouTube is FULL of people talking with their hands, gesturing with emphasis every other word. I think it’s weird, too! I mean, you don’t have to hang your arms at your sides like pepperoni legs, but there’s so much gesturing, their arms must be sore for days afterwards!

      Liked by 1 person

  19. I’ll add to e: people who walk into the bathroom stall they’ve seen you just exit when all the other stalls are empty. Why are you going in there?! Do you enjoy a warm toilet seat that much? Stop stalking me!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. The only voicemail worth leaving is, “The police know.  You need to pack up that chatty parrot of yours and leave town NOW.” The parrot, the parrot, the parrot!!! Too funny to even think of a snarky complaint about annoying humans.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks!! I have no doubt at least one parrot has ratted on someone involved in a crime in Florida. The level of parrot-ownership here is off the charts and probably directly corresponds with the number of operators of telemarketing schemes. 🙂


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