I often hear people say that they “hate” this or that. Sometimes they say it quite convincingly, or at least convincingly enough that I believe them. Me, I don’t like to hate anything. Hating takes too much energy, and I’d rather not waste my meager remaining resources of it. Still…to my dismay I find that there are things in life that I do actually hate. For instance!
“Someone” changed out all of the wall switches in this house to a low-profile rocker type. (And no, that someone was not me.) Unlike the normal, tried-and-true toggle light switch which you probably have in your house which has been in service since the days of Tommy Edison and little Georgie Westinghouse, these newfangled rocker switches are unobtrusive in appearance and quiet in operation. But their “action” is not definite; there is no solid detent between the two positions. It’s very easy to flip the switch to “on” and immediately inadvertently swipe it back to “off” as your hand falls away. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve done it. I hate these switches. Yes, hate.
Then there’s my shower curtain. Oh. My. God. No matter what I do, it billows inward, narrowing the available space in the tub to about a foot or so. Those little magnets that are supposed to secure it to the tub? Totally ineffectual. I’ve tried everything: Using curtains of heavier gauge plastic; leaving the bathroom door opened…or closed; leaving the exhaust fan off…you name it, I’ve tried it. I’ve even tried leaving one end of the curtain open a little to let some equalizing air in – no difference. I took a shower in my guest bathroom (which has a different curtain setup) and the problem exists there too. I suppose the only solution is to switch to sliding glass doors. I really hate my shower curtain. Yes, hate.
I also hate Guy Fieri. In case you’ve never heard of him, Fieri (nee Guy Ferry before he changed it to make his name more exotic and foreign and hard to pronounce) is one of these “celebrity chefs” which are all the rage these days. In this case, Fieri is more “celebrity” than “chef.” He’s a tremendously annoying little shit with spiky, peroxide-blond hair (and strangely, a grey beard!) who wears his sunglasses on the back of his head for some strange reason that only God knows. And he’s got a shrill, raspy voice that to me is like chalk on a blackboard. Fieri owns a couple of restaurants out west, and is expanding his “brand” across the country.
On cable television, The Food Network - which is about the only thing I watch on TV - has fallen in love with Guy Fieri. No matter what hour of the day or night I tune in, I’m guaranteed to find Guy Fieri on the screen with his spiky hair and backwards sunglasses, yelling at me on his show, "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives." Guaranteed. Every mother-loving time. I don’t know why, but I really can’t stand the guy. Ever take an instant, irrational dislike to someone? Yeah, like that. Just rubs me the wrong way, I guess. But would I go so far as to say I “hate” Guy Fieri? Oh, yes, hate. When I turn the TV on to The Food Network and see Fieri’s ugly mug, I don’t just turn the channel, I curse like a drunken sailor who just hit his thumb with a hammer, and then snap the damn TV off in disgust. (I probably should see a therapist about this.)
Recently, Mr. Fieri opened up one of his “signature” restaurants in Times Square in New York City – an enormous three-story, 500 seat food-factory called “Guy’s American Kitchen and Bar.” Pete Wells, the food critic of the esteemed New York Times paid it a visit…four visits, actually (to be fair). His review was…shall we say “less than kind.” But it is hilarious!
Fieri naturally took offense, and went on NBC's "Today Show" to plead his case...that being the NYT reviewer was just trying to make a name for himself. Huh? Attention, Guy: If you get to the lofty position of restaurant reviewer at the New York Times, you've ALREADY "made a name" for yourself. But if you attach your name to a high-profile restaurant in New York City, you better be prepared to be held to an equally high standard.
In an article on Poynter.org website, Wells explained his position and why he wrote the review as he did. And the review is the literal definition of “snarky.” You should definitely read it. (All links are below)
It’s all very amusing in and of itself, but something caught my eye in the comments section to Wells’ original review. The level of…shall we say “dislike” for Guy Fieri is amazing. People really can’t stand this guy. I guess I’m not the only one then! In a perverse way it makes me feel a little better about myself.
By the way, the comments section has some stuff that's as funny or funnier than Wells' original piece. People were calling for a Food Network mashup, sending real chefs like Gordon ("Kitchen Nightmares") Ramsay or Robert ("Restaurant: Impossible") Irvine to go straighten Fieri's place out. One erstwhile "civilian" reviewer dryly noted, "It's not a diner, and it's not a drive-in, but Fieri's restaurant most definitely is a dive." I'm telling you, snarky stuff!
I really don’t like hating. As I said, it’s a waste of energy. And aside from the three things I listed, I really don’t “hate” anything or anyone.
I can change out the light switches in the house. And I can install sliding doors in my shower. But I just hope that Guy Fieri and I never cross paths.
Pete Wells' initial NYT Review
Guy Fieri's Appearance on NBC "Today Show"
Wells' Explanation on Poynter.org