Years ago, back in its glory days, MAD Magazine used to run a feature every so often called "The MAD Hate Book". This was a series of small panels, each with "Don't You Hate ..." at the top, an illustration, and a bit of text at the bottom, showing some situation in life that almost everyone despised and could look at, shaking their head in (sometimes) quiet agreement. The Hate Books were always hilarious and clever, and it often seemed as if you could've written them yourself.

Taking a bit of inspiration from that, here is a short list of things that I, and I suspect many others, hate about everyday life.


... how almost every commercial Web site has a face on it? No matter what the product or service, there's either a smiling or "concerned" face looking at you as if to say, 'we feel we simply have to put a face on this page so you'll feel all warm and cuddly or reassured or that we really care'.

... clumps of chattering people who block store aisles, oblivious to those trying to get around them?

... stupid, stupid people that still don't get it? "Ooh, that MySpace is dangerous!" "We've got to regulate th' Internet to protect the children!" "Th' Internet needs to be monitored so's we can stop th' terrorists!" "Shoppin' on the Web is dangerous!"

... the overuse of the Verdana and ComicSans fonts on Web sites? With all the fonts available to Web "designers", you'd think a bit of creativity would surface now and then.

... the person in front of you, at the counter, that just has to count out the required amount down to the last pennies, which usually have to be searched for in every nook and cranny?

... IT "security professionals" who are using the threat of virus and malware attacks to lock everything in sight down, and to act like little gods over those parts of technology they control?

... tailgaters that follow you for miles, a foot or two from your rear bumper? Then when you finally move over to another lane, they speed up, pass you, and then get into the same lane you're in.

... getting about halfway through a recipe, and discovering you lack an essential ingredient ... and it's 10 PM?

... being in a meeting that's nearly finished, when the leader asks for any further questions, and some dimwit launches off into a 20-minute "quick question"?

... electronic items that come "complete" with "everything you need", except an "optional" cable (usually very expensive) that you find you need to accomplish what you really want to do?

... hearing that the utility company wants another rate increase ... as you sit through yet another power outage that's lasted for hours?

... shrink-wrap, bubble packaging, and the strips of tape on DVD packages, all cleverly designed to drive you insane as you struggle to open the item without damaging yourself in the process.

... people that compile lists like this, since they always seem to leave out the things that you hate!

Submitted for HateQuest 2007.

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