Last night I was watching “Room 101” – for those who haven’t seen it, this programme is half an hour of semi-famous people arguing the case for things/people/subjects they dislike and which they believe should be consigned to “Room 101”. I rather enjoy this programme largely because I have what could be described as a low irritation threshold. So I thought I would create my own Room 101 in my blog and consign everything that I dislike to it and encourage you to do the same. So I am going to start it off with a few ideas – let me know what you think.
“Thank you for waiting, your call is very valuable to us and we will be with you as soon as the next representative becomes available” – this is just plain untrue. If my call really was valuable to them, then they would bloody well answer it rather than subject me to half an hour of piped “Greensleeves” or the like. I’d much rather they were honest with me and said “actually your call is not at all important to this, we can’t be a***d to answer because we are having a tea break and discussing altogether more important issues like who Becky got off with last night at the office do – you’ll just have to wait”.
Supermarket cashiers asking me in a loud voice whether “I need bags”. Isn’t it perfectly obvious that unlike Mrs Smug and her collection of jute bags in the line behind me, that I need bags unless I am planning to carry my shopping one piece at a time to the car? I have no objection to paying for carrier bags, I just object to the moral overtones of the question.
Hairdressers asking where I have been on holiday, where I am going on holiday this year and where I am planning on going on holiday in 2020. To my mind, all hairdressing qualifications should include an “how to make interesting conversation” module. Just like the British always discuss the weather, hairdressers always discuss holidays. This is all done in the full knowledge that they are not remotely interested in where I am going or have been, and I can say with certainty that I am not remotely interested in where they are going or have been. In fact, if I’m honest I quite like the “no conversation” option in the hairdresser – for me, it is the perfect opportunity to catch up on celebrity magazine gossip without having to fork out for the magazines myself.
Handheld shopping scanners in supermarkets. Now, I like this idea, in theory – mainly because it makes shopping with three children vaguely bearable by giving them something to do rather than push me to the edge of a nervous breakdown. However, in reality it can fast become a totally terrifying experience which ends up with you protesting your innocence over one unscanned object and fearing that you are going to end up down the nick. I don’t think the staff in my local supermarket have ever looked at me in the same way since I mistakenly forgot to scan a yoghurt – I can see suspicion in their eyes. In addition, there is always the possibility of being picked for the random “rescan” which totally negates the reason for scanning in the first place (although if you are “spot on”, you can’t resist a little air punch and “Yes!”).
Candles. Everywhere I look in my house, there are candles – you could be for forgiven for thinking I indulge in séances on a regular basis. I was never remotely interested in candles in my twenties and early thirties but somehow I am now candle-addicted (not sure what the word is for that). The fact is that I don’t even light them very often, I just collect them. I especially cannot resist discounted candles. Even now at my desk in my postage stamp sized room, I can count three single candles and two 3 wick candles all with competing fragrances. Candles have become the present of choice for someone you can’t think what to give them. Candles are omnipresent and I think it is time to start a revolt.
Hamsters. What a pointless pet. Why would anyone choose a pet that spends its days asleep and its nights rotating endlessly in its wheel? I get dogs, I get cats (although I loathe them and they loathe me), I even get rabbits at a pinch but hamsters – just wrong. I had this brilliant idea once (well at least I thought it was brilliant) to start a rent-a-pet business where you rent your pet of choice and its accoutrements for a 3 month basis with the option to buy at the end. I thought this would be the perfect solution for those children who want a pet but lose interest almost immediately leaving you to look after it. I realise that perhaps the RSPCA would not be thrilled with this business idea and I’m not sure it works for some pets like dogs but for hamsters, it’s perfect.
Stonehenge. Don’t get me wrong, I am a big fan of historical sites but I don’t understand this one. I think I must be missing something and I have to admit that although I have passed it many times on the A303, I have never stopped to look properly. It just seems to me to be a rather disappointing circle of different sized and shaped stones. Perhaps I am not being very imaginative but if I was a tourist visiting the UK, I would find it distinctly underwhelming especially after spending the best part of an hour crawling up to it on the permanently congested A303.
People who bring objects to the “Antiques Roadshow” which they well know are worth a fortune and then feign smug surprise at the expert’s valuation. Now I know this dislike of mine is partly fuelled by envy but these people are not actors and it is all too obvious when the antiques expert tells them that some obscure (often quite ugly) piece of pottery is actually 15th century and worth upwards of £20,000 – “You’re joking, I had no idea” – “Yeah, right, you’ve already got it insured for £30,000” and then the follow-up comment of “but the value doesn’t matter, I’ll never sell it because it has huge sentimental and personal value, I couldn’t possibly part with it” – one word, b******s!
So there you have it – as I said I have a low irritation threshold and this is merely the tip of the iceberg. What would you consign to Room 101?