Finally, a realistic New Year's resolution!
In too many situations, I've unnecessarily raised my blood pressure and ruined a subsequent hour or so by getting annoyed. As the years pass, the number of annoyances has increased geometrically, a waste of time and energy.
Driving up a one-and-a-half-lane road requires a willingness to squeeze right as far as possible. Dropping the right wheels off the pavement gives oncoming drivers plenty room.
While the truck's tires and suspension get a workout, the oncoming SUV driver - cellphone held to one ear - used all of the room thoughtfully provided and a little more. Arrgh. Fumed. This year, try to remember that it was only logical to take advantage of the road space.
Sloppy emails and a general lack of concern plague the English language.
"The part fits perfect." "He had to drive further down the road." "Drive slow." "He treated the proposal like it was a rogue elephant." "The idea was orientated toward conservation." And, much more egregious mangling. Arrgh. Fumed. This year, try to remember the language is constantly evolving and not everyone is a wordsmith. What should be a simple job around the house turns into an ordeal. A screw refused to go into a tiny mounting hole. Once in, the fixture is attached. It has a gap, not sitting right. Off it comes, fight the battle again and again. Arrgh. Fume. This year, try to remember I'm no electrician/plumber/carpenter, etc., and persistence will eventually get the job done.
Mauians waiting at a counter seldom line up. They usually form a loose group. They take notice of who was there before them and stand quietly until their turn arrives. It's a strange arrangement but it works.
A pushy person bulls his (not his/her or their) way to the counter ahead of all the others. Arrgh. Fume. This year, try to remember strangers often don't know island ways.
"Back home . . . " Arrgh. Fume. Mr. Newcomer, you're not back home. Ahh.
"What you need is a freeway." Arrgh. Fume. This year, try to remember there are entirely too many malihini who can't help themselves. They come to Maui because of what it is, a small island, set up households in rural areas but can't live without all the conveniences of the city they left behind.
Locals and others don't want to pay for county and state services they usually want, forgetting who has to pay the bills. Arrgh. Fume. This year, try to remember the obstructionists don't see the connection between services and taxes. Ahh.
Politicians are more concerned about the next election than doing what is best for the island overall. Arrgh. Fume. This year, try to remember politicians are in office because Maui voters put them there.
Disgruntled drivers accuse police of trying to add to county coffers when they issue traffic tickets. Arrgh. Fume. This year, try to remember those drivers don't know traffic fines go to the state, not the county.
As a result of newcomers who don't bother learning proper names, even some locals refer to "Baby Beach," "White Rock Beach," "Big Beach," "Turtle Town," "Whokeepah," "Kam One" in Kihei and on and on. Arrgh. Fume. This year, try to remember there are many who are ignorant of the fact that proper place names tell stories. It's up to locals to educate them with the polite consideration historically typical of islanders.
Angry sovereigntists think they will be millionaires if the kingdom is restored more than 100 years after the fact, right or wrong, and only Hawaiians need apply even though there were non-Hawaiians who were citizens of the kingdom. Arrgh. Fume. This year, try to remember there are always revisionists who see only what they want to see.
I have an unfortunate habit of thinking I know more than just about anyone about anything. Arrgh. Fume. This year, try to remember what I know may be keeping me from seeing the whole picture and experience is not the only teacher. Ahh.
Resolved: Eliminate fuming about anything that is truly manini. Try to laugh it off. That's a resolution I just might be able to keep.
Haoli Makahiki Hou. May the new year find you annoyance free while doing what you can to make Maui a better place.
* Ron Youngblood is a former staff writer for The Maui News. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.