0719 PV Headshot Jean Shriver.JPG

If this rule doesn't exist, it should: When you pass a certain age, you are allowed to express all your dissatisfaction with the world as you find it.

You could respond that today people of all ages seem to be airing their opinions freely—mostly negative ones.

There are women expressing disgust with the way they have been assessed and treated through the ages. There are teenagers insisting upon being addressed as “they” as a form of disdain for the age-old classification of he and she.

Compared to angry crowds clogging up the streets in various countries, my little annoyances come across as penny ante.

Nevertheless, they are still annoying me.

For instance, why can't I find a quart or a pint of milk in the grocery store?

I'm talking about milk from a cow. That doesn't include soy milk, goat milk, almond milk and even—God forbid—chocolate milk.

The other day I brought home a pint of coconut milk to put on my cereal after a fruitless search of the store shelves for ... ya know... just plain old milk. The coconut stuff wasn't bad, but still ...

And while we're talking about food, have you had the same trouble I have when trying to pull off the plastic film protecting cottage cheese or hummus?

I picture a small devil with an evil grin waving around his spray gun and taking malicious delight in forcing me to fight past his plastic barricade to get my lunch.

And on the subject of difficult openings, why does the milk carton (when you finally find one) tell you to “push up” to open? Push up what? I usually end up going for my scissors which makes for leaky milk pouring.

Moving on, I get to the depressing subject of grammar.

Person after person asks me “Where is that at?” Another brow ruffler is the expression, “He gave it to my brother and I."

Hey, it's “He gave it to me.” So why wouldn't it be “He gave it to my brother and me?”

I even heard our very correct past President once say something about “He gave it to Michelle and I.” Horrors.

People who make child's play of algebra problems I wouldn't touch with a barge pole can't seem to make their way through the dark woods of “lay and lie.”

You can tell them a hundred times “lay is a transitive verb” that has to take an object, such as “He lays his head on the pillow.” The word can't be used alone, except as the past of lie, such as “He lay down.”

Okay, I guess it's confusing, but I still grit my teeth when I here, “He's laying on the ground.” Laying what, I ask?

These days you can't tell the slowpoke older drivers from the youngsters behind the wheel slowing down to check their phones.

Whether young and old, both seem to have lost the knack of signaling before a turn. These are probably the same people who refuse to turn on their lights when it's pouring down rain and you can barely see a foot ahead of you.

And finally, a booby prize goes to the suicidal bicyclists who dress in black and ride a black bike at twilight, as if just daring me to run over them.

Well, thanks for letting me get all that off my chest.

I'll finish by saying I love the light traffic of Palos Verdes. The people are great. The ocean is near and the scenery is gorgeous. I'm lucky to live here, even if I have to drink coconut milk.

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