If You're Doing This, You're Annoying People


NEW YORK (MainStreet) — The mom is plucking a grape for a taste test while one aisle over in the grocery her kids are playing dodge ball with a cantaloupe. Annoying? Yes, but don't offer any parenting advice. Most Americans (86%) are annoyed by parents letting their children run wild or be disruptive in public places, but 14% are irritated by people who give unsolicited parenting advice to strangers. A new Harris Poll reveals the most common pet peeves, and there's a good chance you've witnessed – or committed – at least one.

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Like cramming and slamming an overhead bin. Nearly two-thirds of us (65%) say that's an airline pet peeve; one-third (35%) are most irritated by those who recline their seats. And on the road, tailgaters (53%) and slow drivers hogging the passing lane (47%) make us clench the steering wheel a bit tighter.

Talking face-to-face with someone who keeps checking his mobile phone bugs 35% of us, but people holding loud phone conversations in public places are even worse – nearly two-thirds of us (65%) are annoyed by the "loud talkers."

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And is this STILL A THING? Six in ten Americans (60%) are most annoyed by emails written IN ALL CAPS. Rampant "reply all" email responses agitate about half of us (51%), while those who simply don't reply at all galls another half (49%).

If you complain too much on social media, you're ticking off 55% of your followers – but big braggers bug nearly as many (45%). Being chronically late is nearly universally annoying, but so is being a slob (80% each). Pity those who are late, and a mess.

Meanwhile, "clean freaks" tick off only 20% of Americans, so go ahead: wipe down the break room and clean the fridge.

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And how about the folks who always insist on ordering a meal with a substitution -- or with every little thing "on the side"? That eats away at 60% of your fellow diners. Ordering the same menu item all the time? Four in ten (40%) of Americans are perturbed by those who won't try new foods.

"Hot enough for you?" Don't even start. A majority of Americans (57%) say people who complain about the heat frustrate them the most, while 43% are fired up by people who complain about the cold.

Seems we're just a bunch of grumpy Americans.

--Written by Hal M. Bundrick for MainStreet

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