After a hiatus of a couple years, IT’S BACK. Yep. By popular demand, we’re celebrating Festivus with the annual Airing of Grievances. 2015 has given us so much to kvetch about, and now you’re gonna hear about it.
10. Misuse of Memes
I saw Success Kid being used by a children’s wing at a hospital as a reminder to use the intercom and wait until a nurse responds. And maybe I just spend too much time online, but for some reason this irks me. I’ll give an example.
Pepperidge Farm Remembers is a meme that’s used to reminisce about things that are nostalgic or that, in retrospect, seem to make more sense than their modern equivalents. For example:
Funny, a little clever, makes good use of a pop culture reference.
WHAT DOES THIS HAVE TO DO WITH ANYTHING? Nothing. NOTHING. Fail.
9. The War on Christmas
THIS. IS. NOT. A. THING. Like seriously, stop with the oppression Olympics. There’s no harm in not isolating the other part of the population by saying “happy holidays” (which by the way is derived from “holy days”), and there’s no harm in wishing someone “merry Christmas” because that’s what you believe in. Just don’t be offended when a business doesn’t celebrate the same way that you do and doesn’t greet you in the way you celebrate.
8. Kim Davis
Public servants and elected officials, in their jobs, are representatives of the government. They swear to uphold the constitution. The constitution states that there will be no laws “respecting an establishment of religion.” It seems so simple. If your job is to represent the government but your religion is in conflict with that job, maybe that shouldn’t be your job. Right? If your faith forbids that you kill animals, don’t work in a slaughterhouse. If your deeply held beliefs require you to keep your body covered, I wouldn’t recommend performing in a topless revue. If your religion leads you to believe that gay people shouldn’t be allowed to marry and your job requires you to sign their marriage licenses, resigning may your best option.
7. The confusion about church/state separation
I’d like to think I was being trolled on Twitter, but I’m fairly certain I wasn’t – someone insisted that America is a Christian nation and that the Constitution says nothing about separating church and state. So again, let’s refer back to the first amendment of the Bill of Rights. We’re not a Christian nation, we’re a nation made out of about 70% Christians (most of which don’t even necessarily agree with each other on what that means). The bible isn’t a part of our founding documents, and it’s certainly not the law of the land. So STOP TRYING TO MAKE IT THE LAW OF THE LAND. It’s not going to happen. If you’d like to live in a country with a state church, go back to England. If you want a country where religion is the law of the land, try any of the war torn nations of the Middle East.
6. Denim on Denim
Lest we forget what happened last time this was a thing.
5. Mom Shaming
You guys. Parenting is hard. We’re all basically just doing whatever we can to get by. Where do you think Gwyneth Paltrow came up with the name Goop? *Hint: probably some kind of unidentified body fluid.*
So let’s just live and let live. No. I don’t stress out about making sure everything that crosses my threshold is organic, yes, I let my kid leave the house with messy hair. Why? Because I’m happy to put food on the table and I already had to fight hard enough to get out the door with shoes on my kid’s feet.
Bottom line: you don’t know someone’s struggles. You don’t know if that mom bottle feeding her kid had to use her entire lunch break to pump it while she was at work, or if the formula feeding parent just couldn’t produce. You don’t know if the 6 year old in a stroller has asthma. You don’t know if the mom who doesn’t stay home with her kids is struggling through 2 jobs to keep food on the table, nor do you know why that stay-at-home-mom is a stay-at-home-mom. STOP JUDGING EACH OTHER. This is already hard enough without judgy pettiness.
4. Product Parties
I already have a favorite mascara. I have more than enough scented candles and wax melts. I don’t like cutesy patterned Ms. Frizzle dresses. I’m not going to pretend that essential oils are an adequate substitute for a physician, and I’m certainly not going to wrap myself up in hopes of temporarily getting skinnier.
But pyramid scheme products themselves aren’t the problem. I mean, yeah, they’re generally unprofitable for their sellers unless they get in early, and they tend to target a certain demographic group, plus most people who join won’t make enough to break even with their initial costs. But no. That’s not the problem either.
The problem is the parties. Friends used to invite you over for girls night and you’d get ambushed with high pressure sales, but now, you get added to Facebook groups and you get ambushed with notifications instead. Like there’s not even an invitation anymore – there isn’t even a false pretense of drinks with the girls anymore. It’s just forced on you and yeah, there’s a way out, but only after the fact. NOT. COOL.
3. Food-based fearmongerers, aka the Food Babe Effect
I used to be guilty of this. I used to be a part of one of those healthy living mom communities, the ones that are convinced that if you don’t buy it straight from the farm that it’s poison, and that even if vaccines are “safe,” that the schedule created by scientists and medical professionals is questionable. They’re not too far off from the people who believe that autism is caused by “rope worms” and using Chlorine Dioxide enemas will eradicate them. There are even pictures of these rope worms! And by rope worms I mean intestinal lining. Seriously. It’s a thing.
But seriously, this fear about chemicals is getting far out of hand. Everything is a chemical. Your chemicals comprise your very body, marrow, blood. Unless you have an advanced understanding of biology and chemistry, you probably should avoid talking about biology and chemistry. And no, Google U doesn’t count.
2. Women who “don’t need feminism”
GIRL. Do you know where you’d be without feminism? You’d be a possession. You wouldn’t be able to own your own car, much less drive one. Your father would not only have married you off, he would have PAID to marry you off with a dowry. Forget voting. Forget an education. Forget being considered a person.
I wish we didn’t still need feminism. I wish women were paid in equal measure with their male counterparts for the same jobs. I wish people wouldn’t tell me that I shouldn’t be bothered by street harrassment because it’s just a compliment. I wish my clothing choices weren’t policed or considered a reflection of my morality. ALAS. Feminism is still a thing, and an important thing at that.
1. Gat Damn Spoilers
Confession: I still watch Grey’s Anatomy. They posted a spoiler of their own show one night (seriously – before the episode was over in central time, they posted a spoiler on the show’s facebook page), and I was seconds away from getting the “I’d like to see the manager” haircut, my righteous indignation was so inflamed.
It’s not hard to put **SPOILER ALERT** somewhere. Hell, my friend started a facebook group JUST to discuss nerdy shows for which we’d want to avoid spoilers. And yeah, after a certain time, they’re unavoidable. If you don’t know that Darth Vader is Luke Skywalker’s father by now, that’s your own fault and I have no sympathy for you. Star Wars is almost 40 years old. Get with it.
But seriously, give everyone a few days to catch up on their DVRs.
So those are my biggest beefs this year. Fingers crossed that 2016 is an improvement, but then again, it’s an election year so I won’t keep my hopes up too high. For more grievancy goodness, check out my Airings of Grievances 2010, Airings of Grievances 2011, and the Airing of Grievances 2012 or see what other people have to say by following the hashtag on Twitter (#airingofgrievances). Don’t forget to leave a comment and tell me how you’ve been disappointed this year.