Odd Thoughts: Prepare for annoying annoyance

Clint Eastwood famously told Eli Wallach, near the end of the great spaghetti western The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly, “There are two kinds of people in the world: those with loaded guns, and those who dig. You dig.”

There have been all kinds of “two kinds of people” assertions since then, most of them acerbic, including Tom Robbins’s clever contribution, “There are two kinds of people in this world: Those who believe there are two kinds of people in this world, and those who are smart enough to know better.”

Well, I don’t have a loaded gun, and I don’t know how to fit myself into either side of the Robbins paradox.

But I do know that there are two kinds of people in this world: those who are annoying, and those who are annoyed.

And the ones who are most annoyed are usually the ones who are most annoying.

Wait a minute… that means… I’m probably annoying you right now.

Because the fact is, I’m annoyed.

In fact, I’m finding it annoying that I’m annoyed by an annoying complaint I received from an annoyed person who is apparently annoyed about something that wouldn’t be nearly so annoying if it weren’t so darned annoying, because it just happens to be more annoying than usual.

The complaint is about the noisome noise of annoying airplanes flying over the annoyed individual’s home… where they normally fly, because that’s where they’re supposed to fly… but on this day, the pilots should have known to fly somewhere else – anywhere else – less annoying.

This particular complaint came to my desk from an individual who has chosen to live in close proximity to Langley Regional Airport, but it could as easily apply to annoyed people who have chosen to annoy themselves by living under the flight paths of Pitt Meadows Airport or Boundary Bay Airport or Abbotsford Airport or Vancouver International Airport or… I could go on and on and on.

But that would probably annoy you.

Maybe it would annoy you as much as I get annoyed by people who leave the city to live in the country… and then complain bitterly about how annoying the country is, and how it should be more like the city.

They come out to the country to live next to cows dotting bucolic hillsides and expanses of green fields with birds singing and wildlife offering exciting and picturesque views on the margins.

But soon they are annoyed by the sounds of cows mooing at all hours… and the manure! Yuck!

The songbirds are soon accompanied by annoying crows, and starlings and Brewer’s blackbirds that annoyingly want to nest in mailboxes (which are also annoying because you have to walk so darned far – all the way to the end of your driveway! – to get your mail).

And the wildlife? That turns out to be cougars and coyotes and bears, oh my!

So the annoyed newcomers demand we shoot the cougars on sight… which is probably pretty annoying to the cougars… and if the coyotes don’t stop being so annoying, they’ll get the same treatment.

Bears are another story: they’re annoying, but the annoyed folks get really annoyed if you kill them… something about them being all cute and cuddly, as well as dangerously annoying… so they have to be moved to where they can annoy someone else.

We haven’t got into how annoying raccoons can be. And beaver. And squirrels… those darned, annoying squirrels.

Fact is, annoyance is part of the human condition. Welcome to your humanity!

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