The great thing about having low standards is that you’ll never be disappointed. Most people plop out of the womb full of optimism and ideals, convinced that people are kind, life is painless and Top 40 music has its merit. It’s only once these thoughts are trampled in the dirt – the surrounding soil ravaged so brutally that no positive notions will ever grow again – that these people can come to terms with the world and Will.I.Am.
Unfortunately, some people either never had their dreams utterly shattered or they somehow managed to wiggle themselves back into a good headspace. Bastards. Somehow they seem to think that it’s actually possible for things to go their way. Worse yet, when they’re not pleased, they take their dissatisfaction out on the rest of us.
Fingers crossed the following people soon become as dejected as the remainder of the population.
1. Your parents
It’s as if they brought you into this world purely to continue a vicious cycle: Your grandparents were never pleased with your parents, and now your parents are never pleased with you. You spent your early years seeking their attention and approval, and when that didn’t work, you resorted to teenage rebellion, which just made them madder (can’t imagine why). To top it off, when you finally graduated from high school, your parents decided to call it their achievement and leave you with daddy issues as a consolation prize.
2. Your in-laws
The only person a parent hates more than their own kid is someone else’s. Normally your girlfriend or boyfriend is a complete failure in the eyes of their parents, but stood beside yourself, suddenly they’re royalty and you’re a lowborn with TB. Don’t bother trying to convince the in-laws that you’re kind or intelligent or free of disease – you’ll just look more pathetic.
3. Your boss
Don’t hate yourself when your boss calls your work crap; pity your boss instead. Your boss is nothing more than an aging lion, feebly warding off the inevitable moment that they tumble to the bottom of the pride and you become their boss. Just be a mate and let them assert their dominance while you slowly start rearranging their workspace for your eventual takeover.
4. Your dentist
Dentists don’t ask if you brush your teeth three times a day in order to instil dental hygiene habits, because seriously – three times? Ain’t nobody got time for that. It’s to put themselves in a position of authority and you in one of insecurity. That way, when they recommend you visit an orthodontist and pay a few thousand dollars and a couple of years of pain to fix a crooked tooth that is neither noticeable nor consequential, how can you say no?
While admittedly less of a problem in Australia than in other countries (*cough* Greece *cough*), some cashiers don’t want your money. “You only have notes? We don’t have enough change. You only have coins? We don’t take those either.” Ironically, if they took the coins they would be able to break the notes, but hey, I’m not an economist. It’s even worse when dealing with a choosy vending machine because they stand there with callous indifference to your money woes, offering nothing but a cold, emotionless glare.
6. Film critics
Of course critics are the authority on which films are good and which aren’t. After all, they’re only writing about an industry they’ve never worked in. A critic would know, better than any director with years of study and experience under their belt, what works.
7. Your high school sweetheart
You were never good enough for her/him because you weren’t captain/lead performer of/in the football team/dance recital. And then when you became a bigshot with a flashy car/fake tits and flaunted your successes at the 10 year reunion, she/he didn’t care. And you know why? It’s because you built it all up in your head because you were an emotionally fragile teen! She/he probably didn’t even know you were! You did it to yourself!
8. Picky eaters
This isn’t to criticise anyone with specific dietary needs or ethical views on food, but rather, the ones who can’t articulate a reason for being so choosy. You know, the ones who are “vegetarians” but don’t like most vegetables anyway, and are happy eat at any restaurant or café, provided chips and gravy is on the menu and the gravy isn’t touching the chips and the chips aren’t too hard or too soggy and are made of organic potatoes that weren’t bruised and had the skin shaved off entirely…
9. The entertainment media
The likely motto for the most unrelenting of entertainment news networks: She might be a world-class athlete, but don’t give her any attention until she agrees to pose in lingerie. The worst of the entertainment media craves seeing desperation in the eyes of celebrities. Sure, that actor might be having a mental breakdown, but it could be a bit worse right? Heck, they won’t be satisfied until every celebrity is in rehab or facing serious criminal charges.
God drives a hard bargain. By all accounts, Judgement Day sounds pretty harsh, but what it takes to avoid that cruel fate is equally trying. Have you tried not sinning? It’s rough and sometimes all it amounts to is eating an apple. Sinning is just oh-so tempting and apples are oh-so juicy.
Bonus: Your partner
We all saw that one coming.
Ironically, by writing this piece, Vincent Varney has become one of the difficult-to-please people that he hates. Follow him on Twitter.
Note: This article was first published on BULLSH!T, a blog by young Sydney-based writers.