Christine Graham: I'm living with Victor Meldrew syndrome . .
I think I have always been a bit tetchy. When you are wee, tantrums can be put down to the terrible threes, in adolescence hormonal activity and plooks, if you are a woman well it must be the time of the month or later, 'the menopause' but actually I think I am just a grumpy b....
Lots if things annoy me, some of which should and some of which certainly should not.
We all surely curse under our breath when someone whizzes past in the supermarket at the last minute to bag ‘your’ slot in the checkout queue, the only one which seems to be moving.
Then there is the young chap with pal in the souped–up banger using most of its energy to roar down the street and to tail-gate you. The temptation to keep tapping the brakes is irresistible but childish. I succumb.
There are the bin men who dump your numbered bin halfway down the street, or sometimes don’t come at all.
I left the garden waste as did my neighbours, in defiance (or was it hope) out on the street for four weeks. (They came today).
The unsolicited phone calls have been banished by Call Guardian (I have written of this before) but not the mail ‘inviting”’ me to join BUPA, take out a life policy for the elderly or indeed my funeral.
Are they trying to tell me something I don’t know when every day I get up and some other part of the body is complaining? It’s a relief just to get flyers about pizza deliveries.
There was the recent bill from Edinburgh City Council which I have been waiting for and has taken them some six weeks to send.
Neither courtesy nor humility being in the cooncils lexicon, it has stamped across it ‘TO BE PAID IMMEDIATELY’. Whit a cheek.
Now we are to be kept to 20mph. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m all for sensible speed limits and even more so for sensible driving, but is it sensible to, for example, keep that limit whatever the time of day, or more especially night?
I take it this applies to bus lanes? Cyclists? How do you give a cyclist penalty points? While I am on the topic of cyclists, why don’t they all use the dedicated cycle lanes? Crumbs I’ll get it in the neck for that.
But my biggest grump is directed at the DWP. Recently I had to get in touch with them about pension payments.
Now I’ve got a soft spot for the Welsh accent, but even that could not conceal the, shall we say, challenging attitude of the lady on the line.
It all went wrong when I pressed the wrong numbered button, after listening to Handel’s Water Music for far too long.
Apparently I should have pressed the button for ‘change of circumstances’, though in my book my circumstances had not changed. Anyhoo, I went through the hale rigmarole again, including mair Handel, and landed up with a Welsh lady who turned out to be grumpier than me.
Asked for my name, I obeyed and volunteered my National Insurance Number.
“I’ll ask the questions and then you answer,” she said in a voice to be obeyed. Zieg Heil was on my lips but remained unuttered. It was a testing conversation, but I suppressed my mounting rage and out of sheer devilment commended her for being so helpful and pleasant.
The irony ( was it sarcasm?) was lost on her and I felt a bit rotten as she softened up, There was a human being in there after all and I never once put it down to hormones.
As for myself, I’ve decided it’s genetic.