105 Ways to Give a Book

Festivus: The Airing of the Grievances 2010

Yes, it’s Festivus, the holiday for the rest-of-us. The iron pole is up, the feats of strength are on the schedule, and now is the time for the airing of the grievances. You have free space in the comments — my gift to you this holiday season — or you can always go to the official site. But truly, it would be more fun if you did it here. At least for me. I’ll start:
The parents at my daughter’s elementary school park like idiots. It’s street parking, people, not a cow pasture. Pull up to the car in front of you.

And on the same note, we aren’t living in a world where You and Your Child are the only ones in existence. When you stop in the drop-off line to watch Your Child walk up to the school, time doesn’t magically stop for the rest of us still waiting to move forward. Get out of the way!

It’s driving me insane that I tell my mom something important and she won’t believe it until a different person tells her the same thing. Sometimes it’s someone official, like the doctor, but just as often it’s a clerk in a store. OMG, Mom! Listen to me! (She doesn’t read this, and even if she did, I’ve expressed this to her many times.)

I love my sweet cat Chloe, but I’m so tired of feeding her half cans of food every couple of hours because that’s the only way she’ll eat enough to keep on, you know, living.

Talent isn’t necessarily rewarded. I know, big surprise.
So how about you? None of your people are likely to see your grievances all the way over at my blog, so go nuts. Talk about your boss, your neighbor, your mother-in-law. Tomorrow we can get back into the spirit of the season, but now it’s venting time.

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Anonymous said...

I am sorry, co-worker, that you did not get the promotion, and I did, but this was nearly 6 months ago and you need to stop being such a huge bitch about it.
I know that you know YA books like nobody's business, but have you stopped to consider that I have a decade more library experience than you, and received my MLS 5 years before you did?
Also! I am not such a sore loser and poor sport as you seem to be! (i.e. I am easier to get along with)
The best holiday gift you could give me would be to stop your kvetching and nitpicking of Every Single Thing that I do.
Thanks sincerely,
The New Director of Youth Services

MotherReader said...

Now that's what's I'm talking about! You go!

Teenreader said...

There are many awesome things that teens do. These do not fit in that category.
1. Please stop playing the "friend game." If it is my first time being invited to someone's sleepover, it is not necessary to spend the entire time reliving the wonders of past parties, or gabbing about all the fun times you have spent hanging out with the host at the mall. I get it, you are not a lonely hermit. Stop proving it.
2. Just because you completely identify with Rihanna, does not mean you are deep and insightful for quoting that you, too, wish that airplanes were giant balls of gas floating in space as your facebook status.
3. If you want to give someone a holiday gift, do so quietly and politely, not at the front of the classroom whilst squealing that you hope they like it. Yes, I have given and received a few gifts this year, but I follow the "give and go" method. Hand over your adorable gift bag, wish them a happy holiday, and get the hell out of there.

Judy Grupp Studio said...

To all my co-workers who turned in their Holiday vacation schedule on January 1st of last year - leaving the rest of us to work the whole week before and after Christmas - I hope you get switches and coal under your tree and your turkey burns up in the oven! But then again - being here at work without you is really the best gift!

Melissa said...

To my lovely four year old: PLEASE stop sitting on my head. You are not a cat, and even if you were, I don't appreciate it.

To my lovely seven year old: STOP NAGGING ME. I'm your MOTHER, not your husband.

To my lovely 10 year old: you are not the only child in the family. Please stop hogging all the dinner conversation and shouting at us when we try to usurp your platform and then sulking when we shut you down. Share.

To my lovely 14-year-old: NO, we are NOT going to send you to a boarding school in Connecticut just because it's a better "opportunity". (Read: you don't want to do the work in your gifted classes.) Stop asking.

To my lovely husband: Stop turning on the ceiling fan. It's effing December. And please PLEASE put the toilet seat down.

Thank you.

Z said...

to my boss - please stop sending a "friend request" on facebook. after the 9th time it's getting pretty sad. we are not friends in real life and we won't be on FB.

Anonymous said...

Dear Co-workers;
You are not my equal, nor are you above me. I have my own office because I have been here 20 years, I have a degree on my wall and I'm not in a position that has had multiple turnovers in the last three years.
However, nor am I faculty. I am staff. The $ that is normally collected from faculty for Christmas cheer is for ALL staff. Unlike last year, when you divided it amongst yourself, the faculty got wind of it, and given that you no longer seem to think it's your "duties" to assist the faculty (though it is what you were all four hired to do) they went ahead and gave their "donations" directly to me instead (BOOYAH!).
Enjoy your multiple, long lunch hours, and 3-4 day work weeks while you can. I'm thinking your days of trying to stab me in the back will soon come to a crashing halt and I will be happy where I work, once again.
The Program Coordinator

Anonymous said...

Dear Editors and Agents: please stop yakking it up about yourselves on FB and Twitter and promote your authors and illustrators. They have it hard enough having to promote their books basically on their own without your constant bragging about your new clothes, vacations and theatre tickets. Why the hell aren't you working like a dog the way they are? Shut up.

Dear Colleagues: When I promote or shout out some good news please stop telling me how jealous you are of me. That is so self-serving when the moment really belongs to me. PS if you are a jealous friend then you are really not my friend.

Dear Female Editors: Women are illustrators, too! Please stop trying to hook up with that male illustrator by giving them a job. Please show solidarity with your sisters. Same goes for librarians when it comes to giving awards.

Dear Colleagues: Please stop bragging about your new toys. gadgets, clothes, vacations, etc. Please show some humility. Enjoy your new thing but stop being so HS and competitive. You are acting like bullies and not helping your own cause to fight bullying.

Dear Colleagues: I am not flattered when you steal my ideas. And stop getting huffy when you are called on it. Frig you.

Oooo. Feel so much better. Thanks MR!

Charlotte said...

No, Pam, it's the parents at my kids'school who are the idiots! Don't leave you car to walk your darn kid to the darn door, stop and chat to sundry people, etc. JUST GO ALREADY. I hate them.

I am sure that I hate other people too, but I can remember who they are...I will ask my husband if he can help.

Anonymous said...

There are so many people who desperately want children and are unable to have them, so it REALLY PISSES ME OFF when parents in the library sit on the computer for hours ignoring their kids. And I won't even mention the parents who do worse things to their children. :(

Also, if our desk computers were any slower, I'd be better off with a stone tablet and chisel.

Anonymous said...

Dead Self-Published Author,

When I write in my Review Policy that I do not accept self-published works, I do not mean:

I do not accept self-published works...

1) unless you are a teacher.

2) unless you read my blog.

3) unless your self-published book is really, really, really, really good.

Stop thinking the rules don't apply to you. They apply to you.


Anonymous said...

I dislike narrow minded, judgmental liberals.

Anonymous said...

Hey fat, stupid employer, you are terrible. Your school is a disaster. I hate that I waste my passion on your library scam. You don't care about the students and you certainly don't care about the people that come in everyday and bust their asses to educate these kids. You only care about how much title I money you get so you can blow all the state money on administration salaries, namely your daughter's. Thanks for not letting me do my job and I know I shouldn't let you and your crap organization have any power over me, but I hate that you make me feel like a complete failure at the end of every day.

And co-workers who got promoted instead of me, I still like you but I kind of hate you right now, especially since I know I'm just as smart and got my degree years before both of you. I wish I wasn't so nervous during interviews. My only consolation is that I'm a better dresser. Style has to count for something, right?

That felt good. Thank you!

gail said...

Oh, good. Some of us are talking about our families.

I have some family members who cannot stick with a freaking plan. They appear to believe that "schedule" is a fancy French word with which they are not familiar. I have two elderly family members who need support and another family member who is just plain needy. They do require a lot of time, but I can manage my share of the work if I can just organize the work. Wanting to change what we do every week is not planning or organizing. I know someone thinks she is helping by wanting to randomly cancel my visits, but if problems pile up because I'm not there to address them because she told me not to come that only makes for more work. More work that can end up being at random times, say on those three days a week that I am trying to protect for what is supposed to be my job.

There's no point in airing grievances about work because my work situation is so lame right now that there is no one to grieve.

This event is kind of like being invited to a potluck, isn't it? And your grievance is what you bring instead of a dish.

gail said...

I also have a complaint about our Internet access. Particularly with this particular computer.

DJL said...

I am truly sorry that the library is closed for several days in honor of the Christmas holidays, patron who needs to use our facilities to tutor children over their winter break. Why not let them just be kids and enjoy the break? In fact, why not stop complaining about our policy in using our facilities that are provided to you for FREE?

Also, parents...when your child is too sick to go to school, please DO NOT bring them to the library. We would prefer your germ-infested progeny remain at home and in bed where they can get well before coming to visit us again. And in the same vein, if you are sniffly yourself, parents, please remain at home and eat hot soup and drink hot tea rather than sneeze and cough all over our tables and books.

Thank you.

Cindy said...

It is not necessary to always have the last word. Especially when there are two of you trying to have the last word and both of you find it necessary to escalate the "discussion" in order to have the last word. Please, my dh and my usually grown-up but reverting to teenager daughter, let's have a pleasant Christmas!

bioluminescence said...

Dear Neighborhood Dog Owners,
Please keep these basic principles in mind:
1. Safety is more important than your feelings
2. People come before dogs
3. Your dog cannot be trusted to pick up its own poop
4. You can buy a leash for $1 and it takes 5 seconds to attach it to your dog
Millions of people are bit by dogs every year, and dogs get hit by cars every day. It is not an insult to your character or your dog's for me to tell you that I will not have unattended dogs around my dog or child. Yes, I'm a little wound up about it, because my daughter and I have been hurt by "nice dogs" FOUR TIMES. This does not make me a crazy bitch. Yes, my dog will bite if he gets scared. If you continue to let your ankle-biter run loose and jump in his (leashed) face, because I "shouldn't have a vicious dog", than it is your fault when your dog gets maimed and I will call Animal Control immediately. I only wish I could called Child Protective Services now to keep you from loving your dog enough to dress it in costumes but not enough to fix the gate, use a leash, or otherwise restrain it even though I have seen it run in front of multiple cars.
Happy Holidays,
Fellow Dog Owner Who Can Pee My Dog Without Risking Harm to Anyone

bioluminescence said...

err, that would be "call"

Anonymous said...

To John Grisham for Theodore Boone, Kid Lawyer. Why?

To my siblings who cannot seem to get along. Get over yourselves. It's Christmas and we're family. To my brother who I haven't seen in 4 years and whose children are growing up beautifully and do not know their aunts, uncles, and cousins. Shame on you.

Happy Festivus and a very Merry Christmas.

MotherReader said...

To Aeropostale, who sent me the wrong shirt for a Christmas present TWICE and kept me on the phone for FORTY minutes to tell me that I could return the shirts to be credited back the money - which one would expect is the least one could do, even it was one's own fault - and finally could only direct my request to a manager who will perhaps write me a nice email - F U!!!

Anonymous said...

Dear Editor,

I really like working with you, but I wish you would have more respect for my time. If you expect me to drop everything - publicity for the previous book, speaking engagements, family, and even a holiday for crying out loud! - I would appreciate it if you gave me a bit of notice so I can reschedule my life.

Believe me, I work incredibly hard for the little pay I get from your employer, and I'm not just sitting around watching TV until you dole out the next step in the process.

I know this is generally how it goes, and that I should be grateful to have squeezed through a slim crack in the publishing door, but think of it this way: without me and everyone else on this thread, you're out of a job.

(Wowza, that felt good.)

Extremely Nice Author

Suzanne Casamento said...

During air travel, why do grown adults grab on to the seat in front of them, kick the seats and slap the tray tables around?

Wouldn't it be easy to instead have some courtesy for the sleeping passenger in front of you? (Yes, that passenger was me, three days ago.)

Thank you. I needed that.

Anonymous said...

To the parents sitting in front of me at the school Christmas concert. Please STOP standing up and taking photos with your new iPhone. It's dark. You're far away. Your child is one in a group of 40. He is moving as he sings. His head will be smaller than a dime in your photo, not to mention blurry. And while you take photo after photo, looking at your phone each time hoping for better results, I cannot see my child, who is cuter than yours anyway.

aquafortis said...

Dear Universe: where does all my time and energy go? Please provide more of it. Thank you.

Dear Cats: For the love of God, please stop waking me up to feed you at 6 a.m. I love you, but I also love sleep.

Dear Husband: Next year I refuse to be the only one responsible for making sure that Christmas actually happens. Just because we both hate shopping doesn't mean that I always have to be the one to take one for the team.

Dear House: Please stop getting so dirty so quickly. I can't keep up.

Dear Well-Meaning Relatives: Please stop giving us so many boxes of cake mix. I know it is delicious cake mix, but we almost never bake cakes.

Dear Annoying Relatives: Any day now, feel free to stop asking us when we're going to reproduce.

WHEW. Thanks, Pam. I guess I had more grievances than I thought.

Anonymous said...

"Work at home" is not a euphemism for "gets paid to sit at home and eat chocolate." I am at home. I work. That's it. Yes, I am at home, but no, I cannot watch your children or organize field day or teach mid-week bible studies. I am working. Thank you.