Lower Learning & Bad Manners

I was doing a little research today on things that annoy people. I’ll be attending the Oklahoma Writers Federation conference in OK, City this weekend and want to make sure I’m on top of my game when I roar into town. Thankfully, there’s a website dedicated to this task http://www.getannoyed.com/

You won’t believe the things that irritate some people (or maybe you would). Here’s an example; “People that interrupt you when you’re telling a story and then they continue to tell you their story and then ask you in an uninterested tone to continue on with your story when they are finished talking.” Does that sound like anyone you know?

Feel free to share your personal Pet Peeves in the comments section. Maybe I could learn some new techniques for this weekend.

If this is your first visit to Friday Flash Fiction, the little Purplelidite who can calm even the most frayed nerves is Lavender Chamomile Wisoff-Fields. To learn how to participate in this weekly exercise in madness, head over to her blog for instructions. To rent a box in the writers in FFF Hollywood Squares Authors Block, click here.

PHOTO PROMPT © Sandra Crook

Is your child too intelligent?

Are they kind, attentive, and respectful?

Do they fail to embarrass you in public?

If so, join the hundreds of satisfied parents who’ve enrolled their children in the Blackwell Institute for Lower Learning and Bad Manners.

In just a few short weeks, we’ll transform your sweet, goody-two-shoes angel into the hateful, self-centered demon you’ve always dreamed of.

Our rude, foul-mouthed students master manipulative behaviors such as lying, cheating, and bullying without the least hint of social conscience or accountability.

Ninety-eight percent of Blackwell graduates advance to highly successful careers in government and politics.

Go bad. Go Blackwell.


72 Comments on “Lower Learning & Bad Manners

  1. My Hubby and I cracked up over this. He just called it, now let me get this right…. “that was really , really, really, really bad.” He means , really good! Let’s see, how much is tuition?… maybe I need to register for classes.


  2. Hahaha I’m sure this will be a very popular school. Especially with the excellent slogan “Go bad. Go Blackwell.” So catchy. 🙂


  3. Hilarious, Russell. Those graduates should go far in today’s world, especially in politics. One might even get to be president. I’ll have to check out the getannoyed website. Good writing that keeps us laughing. 😀 — Suzanne


    • I’m not so sure our current president isn’t a Blackwell grad. These job skills also come in handy if you’re preparing to work at the Department of Motor Vehicles, the IRS, or a good number of other government offices. Those folks also seem to be easily annoyed.


      • Come to think of it, from what I’ve been reading about the problems of people on recent flights, I think some of the Blackwell grads might have gone on to get jobs in the aviation industry. 🙂 — Suzanne


      • Yes, they seem to take great pleasure in forcibly removing passengers. That may become the new way to exit the plane.


  4. Dear Mr. Lack-O-Manners,

    I started to read the list of pet peeves but agreed with too many of them and decided that I’m a crabby person. There’s nothing that irritates me more than someone interrupting…unless it’s noisy chewing and someone talking with his mouth full. Oy. Don’t get me started. I’ve met many graduates of your asyl…institute. Your story would be funny if it didn’t ring so true. Enjoy Oklahoma…hope to see you in August. Stay afloat.


    Lavender Chamomile WF


    • Dear Lav Chamo,

      I didn’t realize you were so easily peeved. Jan is going to have to build a larger barn if you’re going to keep that many pets. I’m looking forward to rubbing elbows with so many great writers in OKC. Wonder how many of them I can annoy? Thanks for the tip on talking with my mouth full, although I usually just talk with my brain empty.

      Take five sniffs of lemon balm and call me in the morning,
      Dr. Lack-O-Manners


  5. People who can’t ignore the cell phones. Either talk to me, look at me, communicate with me, or go worship your cell somewhere else. Please.

    And yes, I have one. I do not carry it on my person. It is not my lifeline or my vehicle for a blood transfusion. I simply refuse to be in someone else’s company, but ignoring that person whenever the cell jingles or buzzes or pings or sings. It’s a machine. Its feeling will not be hurt if I don’t pick it up instantly.


    • Excellent comment, Linda. I agree whole-heartedly. I think such behavior is rude and disrespectful, however many of my younger co-workers seem to think nothing of it. They don’t take it personally.

      The funny thing is, my adult kids answer every phone call and text they get when they’re in our presence, but when we call or text it may be hours (or never) before they respond to Mom & Dad.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. LOL. I loved this story 🙂
    I’d get worried that there was some kind of slowly ticking emotional time bomb set to go off, if a child was too good and perfect. On the other hand, I do believe in them being taught basic manners. So yes, my pet peeve is “little darlings” whose parents allow them to run riot in public at all times, however inappropriate, and wreck everybody else’s enjoyment — this, all in the name of free expression. I also hate it if you hold doors open for people and they sail past you without so much as a thank you.


    • A friend of mine related a story about seeing a woman with an unruly child in the store. The kid was pitching a fit, screaming, crying, and causing quite a scene.

      My friend asked, “Lady, did you beat that child?”
      She replied, “No.”
      “Well, maybe you should,” was his response.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Rescently I had occasion to take a train journey on a very full train. Several passengers had put suitcases etc on seats, and then refused to move them! and many of ours train companies wish to remove guards from their trains!


  8. Wonderful. Thanks for the laugh.

    I’ve read some interesting rants lately, interesting because in both cases they were ranting about people being nice to them. Go figure.


    • What a revolting turn of events. In the South, we think it’s rude if you don’t wave, speak, or acknowledge other human beings (even total strangers) on the street. You should have seen the reaction I got in Los Angeles.


  9. i’ve heard that the school is starting to give out honorary doctoral degrees to world leaders in time magazine’s 100 list. just about time. 🙂


    • I don’t think they GIVE AWAY anything, but for enough money, you could certainly get a degree without attending a single class.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Are you sure such a school is truly necessary? Seems to me I cannot find any of these so called “Goody-Two-Shoes” in my ‘hood.
    Don’t bet me started on pet peeves. Like Ms. Lav Chamo, I’d need a barn…
    Top of my list? Open-mouthed chewers and utensil-biters.
    This was definitely a good hoot this week!


    • I thought you were a pretty even-tempered gal, Dale. I’m surprised a loud chomper would ruffle your feathers. Now, maybe if they were continually scratching their butt, I could see the annoyance.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I think a butt scratcher would annoy me less than a loud chomper, truth be told!
        And I can be less even tempered than you think…😉


  11. An acquaintance told me about watching their neighbor with her five year old son one day. The two were in front of their house and the boy angrily kicked his mom, knocking her down on the ground. And she calmly said, “Joshua, how many times have I told you not to do that?” Definitely a graduate of BILLBM — and at age five! He must have been a fast learner.

    As to pet peeves, I don’t know what I should say about others. People are probably listing all my bad habits as I speak. 🙂
    But one thing that really disgusts me is a novel where the female MC constantly describes the male MC’s body in drooling, obsessive terms. Which in turn make her look like an airhead. I’d feel the same way if the genders were reversed, but male authors nowadays would never get into print carrying on that way these days. I like to see intelligent Mcs of both genders and respect for all people all across the board.


    • Did you ever watch a comedy show called Mad TV? One of their regular skits featured a character named Stuart who was a whiny voiced, out of control kid. His mother always threatened him but never followed through.

      As for your peeve, the MC comes across as a lustful nymphomaniac. I suppose that fulfills someone’s fantasy.


      • Let’s send our mind back many years to Dear Dennis the Menace. 🙂 No, I’ve never seen that comedy show — but i do see it enough in real life. One time a mom carried her three-year-old into the donut shop and chanced to meet a friend, so she wanted to stay for coffee. But the toddler refused to stay; Mom had to take her home and that was that.

        This book was a cozy mystery, peppered with lusty comments plus the usual spitting of nails MCs do in stories nowadays. As you say, there are stories for everyone’s fantasy–some are best-sellers.


  12. So funny ☺ I’ve always wondered where politicians go to learn their skill set. I’ll make sure to avoid it.


  13. Now, I know what that long line is. It looks like many, many people are interested in attending.
    Tongue rings or nails – I’m not sure what they’re called. I don’t want a waitress/waitor with that in her mouth.
    I can’t undersatnd what she/he is saying. It looks nasty. I have more but I want to leave space for others with pet peeves.
    Thought provoking write … Good Luck with your conference.
    Isadora 😎


    • I find piercings rather distractive. in fact, I can’t see anything else when I look at the person. I just hope they don’t skewer me with all those sharp objects.

      The conference has been fun so far.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Huh, and here I thought that all that outrageous behaviour came naturally to some people, especially politicians. Now that I know they had to study to be obnoxious I’ll have to respect them, NOT. Funny story.


    • This is a place where they can really polish their skills and hone them to razor-sharp, hateful edge. Every good story needs a villain.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. This was great, told with just the right voice and cynicism. Unfortunately, the place must exist as I’ve seen and met so many of their graduates


  16. There are so many Pet peeve manners! Love your post and how you opened up for the opportunity of discussion. I just wrote a post about modern day manners. I would love it you checked it out and gave me some feedback.


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