One thing I will never understand is why my mother always uses self-rising flour.

She and I recently had a conversation about this, and she still swears by it. I can remember her sending me to the store once and only all-purpose flour was on the shelf. I called her to see if all-purpose would be OK, and she sent me to another store. I figured with a name like “all-purpose,” it would cover all purposes.

Another thing that I will never understand is why it takes the Avengers to pry a shopping cart away from the other carts at Walmart. I’m sure I look absolutely ridiculous at the entrance while fighting and tugging with all my might. Of course, someone always walks up and offers to help right before they gently tug and release the same cart that just seconds earlier wanted nothing to do with me.

I know that I’m not the only one who feels like whenever you’re running late for work or rushing home with hot food, a train is on the track. No matter what, I have this problem with the train track on Pamplico Highway a few times a week. Things can be flowing smoothly, and then I hear that familiar horn. I’ve eaten hot fries in my car many days while watching the train go by.

Who has ever started using a new product and could swear that at that very moment others discovered the same product? There have been many times when I’ve stumbled upon a product that I’d pass for months. The moment I decide to try it and love it, they start selling out of it, or it becomes discontinued. It makes no sense to me, but I couldn’t make this stuff up.

Does anyone else become infuriated when someone pulls out in front of you driving 20 miles under the speed limit? Nothing irritates me more than when I look in my rear-view mirror and see absolutely no one behind me. This tells me that they could have very well waited for me to pass them before they jumped out in front of me. I mean, clearly they weren’t in a rush, so what was their reason for pulling out?

What about when you approach a red light and a car switches lanes to get in front of you, preventing you from turning on red? At this point, you must sit through another red light because of the person that jumped in front of you. I know this has caused more than just me to bang on the steering wheel a time or two.

Something else that ruffles my feathers a bit is when someone asks to go ahead of me in line at the store while knowing full well that they have more going on than just a quick scan of an item or two. Now I’m standing behind someone who has taken more time with one item than it would’ve taken me with 10.

If you couldn’t relate to anything that I’ve mentioned so far, I know you’ll relate to this. One word: telemarketers. As if they haven’t annoyed us enough in the past with their “private numbers,” they now call from numbers that make us think twice before ignoring the call. In my mind, this could be day care or an important callback that I’d been waiting for. Dear telemarketers: You get me every time. I always fall for it. I allow it to ring about three times before I give in. I answer and wait a few seconds before I say hello. This is when the recording starts. They call about a vehicle warranty that I don’t have. They want to lower my car insurance or student loans. They even want to lower my interest rates.

These are among many things that I will never understand, and I’m certain that I am not alone. So the next time you're fighting with a shopping cart at Walmart, eating hot fries at a railroad crossing or trying to decide between all-purpose or self-rising flour, just know that you're not alone in this thing. I share your frustration!

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Christine McCormick Cooper lives in Florence and is employed at PGBA. She enjoys spending time with her husband, teenage triplet sons and daughter. Contact her at

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