Tuesday, 6 April 2010

The Opposite of Pet Peeves

I understand that it's not very easy to convey emotions and intent
through the written medium for many of us. Trying to precisely convey
those emotions could make it wordy and not many of us are that patient
or good with words. We try and avoid using too many words and
consequently have evolved a multitude of ways to implicitly express
intent and emotion. After over a decade of emailing, over six years of
SMSing and a little under a year of Gtalking with friends, a few
things about informal written communication have made into my pet
peeve list.
#1 hi....................... or ok......................

What's with the million full stops? What are you trying to say with
'.........................'? I understand 'hiiiiiiiii' but what the
hell does 'hi..........................' mean? Three dots, optimal.
Four, maximum. More than that, sound of nails on chalkboard.
#2 i told ma motha tht i cud neva eva do dat

Aaaarrrgh! This really should be my #1 pet peeve. I could slap the
person if he/she were in front of me. Unfortunately, when this happens
the person is always miles away. Those who think writing 'ma' for
'my', 'motha' for mother, 'neva' for never, 'eva' for ' ever' and
suchlike is cool, please, it's disgusting. Makes me think very low of
you. None of the other pet peeves manage to do that. But this one
does. Thankfully, none of my friends do that. Except one. When that
friend messages, I call him back. Just to avoid seeing his messages
that neva fail to get ma dander up.
#3 K

That's the worst reply one could send me. Following closely, is 'Ok'
or any such one-word replies. I've grown accustomed to it though. Even
then, I find it impolite and impersonal. Makes me feel unimportant, as
if the person thinks I don't deserve the energy to type a whole
sentence, or at least, the whole word (in case of 'K'). I'd be happy
if the sentence was complete, as in, "Ok, I'll be there" or "Ok,
7o'clock it is" or even, "Ok, sure." or at the very least, "Ok :)"
#4 This is a sentence that so needs exclamation, don't you think!!!!!!

I confess to being a perpetrator of this heinous crime for a while,
but then one day epiphany happened and it became a pet peeve. I notice
people using exclamation marks when it really isn't necessary. Makes
me wonder what's so wondrous about what he/she is saying. That, still,
is forgivable. What irks me more is the use of multiple exclamation
marks!!!! What do two or more exclamation marks do that a single
exclamation mark doesn't? I'll forgive the use of two exclamation
marks occasionally for greater emphasis, when one wants to show that
one is enormously surprised, but otherwise I'd rather that people keep
exclamation marks to a minimum and if indispensable, don't use more
than one. Use that energy that you spend in typing that extra
exclamation mark for other productive activities. Like inserting space
after a full stop.
#5 "cool when did u go how is ur family good say hi to them" or
"cool.when did u go.how is ur family.good?say hi to them"

Though not inserting space after a full stop in SMSes doesn't annoy me
much, not using full stops at all can annoy me if I'm in a sour mood
already. But miss a full stop in an email or miss the space after a
full stop, the sender, mostly a friend, is sure to see the smoke from
fireworks at my end.

Which brings me to the real topic of this post. The opposite of pet peeve.
Remember when a new friend (of the opposite sex) SMSes you for the
first time? "Hi Manasa, what you doing?" is the most common first SMS
I've received over the years. And there was never a time when I
genuinely wanted to reply to such an SMS. I reply, just to be polite
and not to be too snobbish. I have absolutely no interest in the
inane pointless conversation that is to follow after the 'what you
doing' question. Unless, of course, he/she says "Manasa, you are the
best" and I say, "I know... Tell me more :D"
Today, a friend, a new friend (who I never spoke to while in college,
and who I hardly spoke to during my brief stint at Infosys) who I
befriended, after several meetings at my best friend's home, a movie,
some PS3 games video-watching and a photo, sent me his first SMS. It
wasn't the dreaded "What you doing?" question. It was the perfect
conversation starter. It was different. I was impressed. This type of
conversation-starter SMS suddenly became the opposite-of-a-pet-peeve.
Opposite of pet peeve. Whatay long phrase. What's the word or a phrase
that means the opposite of pet peeve? After much brain-racking and
producing zilch, I went to Google for help and found out there really
wasn't a commonly used phrase for it. Though I did find some
interesting words people use to mean the opposite of pet peeve -
The little things (that make life worth it)
Cheap thrills
Warm fuzzy
Simple pleasures
Secret delight
Undomesticated peeves
Personal favourite
Feel-good moments
Soft spot
Pet likes
Guilty pleasure

I think 'secret delight' comes close to the opposite of a pet peeve, no?

1 comment:

divya kamath said...

Yes. I completely agree with your pet peeves. reading something like 'its ma lyfe' gets on my nerves all the time.
'k' makes me want to throw my phone. hate such replies.

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