≡ Menu

Unclear Instructions (and other Pet Peeves)

I received an email from a friend about the date of an event.  the date is July 25, 2008. Phrasing that way is unhelpful. Is this a Monday or Tuesday or Friday or what?  I cannot understand why people don’t use both bits of data. I don’t remember dates. I remember days of the week.  This person expects that I will be able to look it up. But in fact I will not do so. Even assuming that I have a calendar on the wall (mine is down temporarily), most of the dates that matter are in following months. Even if I did happen to know today’s date, This “Multiples of 7” of math doesn’t work when the event is in a different month from the date you currently live in.

Yes, it is true that occasionally there is a mismatch between the day of the week and the date. That in fact is a good thing because it serves as an additional error-checker.

Another pet peeve I have is people who give addresses via email and do not provide an intersecting street or a link to a map. I am familiar with block numbers on Westheimer, but that doesn’t mean I can know where the 7000 block of Westheimer is located. And what about streets which have a S. and N. in front of their names? Sometimes the numerical value can be misleading. 

Both are cases where a precise answer is not a helpful one, where it puts an extra  burden on the recipient to decipher the answer in more meaningful terms.

I realize this everyone may not feel comfortable making this information  freely available, but those who receive emails have my name, phone number and address on the signature line. Frequently they ask me for their address or phone number. Miffed, I simply reply, “it’s on the bottom of every single email I have ever sent you.”  I’ve come to the point of saying, “Google Robert Nagle telephone number.” I understand the occasional inability to access email or the Internet for that matter. But the inability to note these obvious clues is annoying.

I have had the same fastmailbox.net address for 6 years. I’ve also had a yahoo email for almost as long. But I sent friends and acquaintances a notice about 4 years ago that I will no longer receive emails at my yahoo address. Yet, people keep sending messages to it. I feel compelled to check it on a semi-regular basis on the off chance that one of my bevy of friends will once again accidentally send a message to that damn old address.

Egad, if I devoted a post just to the things that annoyed me, I could go on forever. And the world would not be any better for it.

{ 0 comments… add one }

Leave a Comment