Cumberland Times-News

Maude McDaniel - Living

July 16, 2011

Get your point across but never say ‘hate’

When I was a kid a millenium or two ago, I was not shy about expressing how dumb I thought certain things in the world were. Yes, even in those adult-centric days. (Though I never had the nerve to roll my eyes. )

Mother would let me get it all out, but then, always, after I was finished about how much I hated some kid in school, or something the teacher had said, she would always say to me, “Never say ‘hate.’ Especially about people.”

It happened often enough that it kind of ground a furrow into my brain, so that I have always, well, hesitated (if not hated) to use the work “hate” — about anything.

I think I have gotten old enough now that I can dare to use the word “hate” about certain things. There are the obvious things, of course, like abuse and greed and stupidity, but there are a few lower-key things that I feel justified, finally, at using the word “hate” about. None of which perhaps are very important in the world of good or bad, but more in the world of really really annoying!

I hate the expression, “Oh, my God.” Most of the people who use it quite often seem to rate God pretty low in the scheme of things, so I can understand their using it for a mindless expression. (Although I think it’s funny that God is so often on the lips of nonbelievers these days.)

No, the ones I don’t understand are those who pray sincerely every night and then say “Oh my God” all the next day. (And they’re not in church.) I watch a lot of HGTV and you hear it all the time there.

I hate brownies with hard edges.

I’ve hinted at this before a lot, but I’ve never actually come out and said it — I hate, yes, I’m going to say it — I hate the teenage obsession with vampires and zombies.What a great preparation for the grownup life — dreaming about reanimated corpses and versions of voodoo snake gods. Sure beats Prince Charming, right?

I HATE bullfights.

Also, you already know how I feel about heavy metal and hard rap, and all that. So in deference to my young reader, I’m going to limit myself here to just — rolling my eyes! (Did you know that if you roll your eyes long enough and heartily enough, you can get dizzy? I just discovered that.)

I know something you hate! Puns! I found that out a few weeks ago with my animal pun column. It alienated half my readers, who had only recently returned after my last pun column several years ago. We miss her, and I’m hoping to get her back soon with some regular jokes next time. For some reason I seem to be the only person in the world who thinks puns are legitimate jokes — sorry about that! And I can’t promise to reform any time soon!

I hate Value City’s “I want it naow! I want it awl!” commercial.

I hate limousines! Limousines in general, but especially stretch ones. And it’s not just because they are show-offy. They look like monsters on the road, and they gobble up money you could use better, say, on books. But then I was never much on fancy cars. All I have ever wanted in a car was something that got me where I wanted to go with the least mess and expense.

Dorothy Parker wrote a famous poem asking, “Why is it no one ever sent me yet/one perfect limousine?” and scoffed at the “one perfect rose” she got instead. Well, I would settle for that “one perfect rose” from the right person — or maybe a 2000 Toyota Camry, if pressed. (Just kidding! I already have one.) I don’t actually mind showing off either, but limousines are so crass.

I prefer columns.

Sorry, kids, but I hate (hate, hate) partying and getting drunk. What a waste of adolescence. You never get that back again. And when I think of all the good times I’ve had, I can’t imagine not being able to remember them.

I hate exercise. Just the kind that you do for itself, though, not the kind that happens while you’re doing something you want to do.

I hate pigout contests. Joey Chestnut ate 62 hotdogs in 10 minutes late week. I do not hate Joey Chestnut.

I hate moles. The ones on your skin, I mean. Other moles are cute, at a distance. And, of course, some moles can make some people look cute, Like Allison, G. (not her real name) in high school. I used to hate Allison G. (”That’s enough, Maude.”) But not any more, honest, I don’t. On the bright side, may she rest in peace.

Okay, okay, I’m not supposed to use the word “hate” for people. I succeeded for a long time, don’t you agree? Anything for the column!

(Sorry, Mother.)

Maude McDaniel is a Cumberland freelance writer. Her column appears on alternate Sundays in the Times-News.

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