Thursday, November 24, 2011


This has pretty much nothing to do with the post, but it's late. And I really like this.

So waiting in line today at the Self Service Checkout at Woolies with my 3L milk and discounted loaf of bread, I craned my neck from the 7 person deep line to see what in the fuck was taking so long.  That’s when I spotted her.  The lady who had gone too far with the self servicing. No, wait, she wasn’t doing anything untoward, she was simply scanning and bagging oh, a WHOLE trolley and bagging them around her feet.  And then I thought, well wait, it doesn't actually say anywhere that she can’t do this. It doesn't say express.  It doesn’t say x amount of items of less.  But my question is why? I mean if you want to put yourself under the pump and bag your own shit, why wouldn't you just go to Aldi and spend half the cash?

This got me thinking about the unwritten rules in life. I mean it doesn't say anywhere that these kinds of shenanigans aren't allowed and like someone pointed out to me today, sometimes people do it that way because it’s faster than waiting for the checkout chick. Sure, but not for all the time poor people waiting behind you it’s not. And just because it’s not written doesn't make it so.

UNWRITTEN RULE: Don’t write passive aggressive, vague status updates on Facebook.  ‘Oh tomorrow will be so much better than today, you can’t break me!’  Or ‘Some people should really think before they speak!’ Who can’t break you?? What did they say?  Then when people enquire after them, they fall silent or respond with an equally vague response.  FUCK. OFF. Just simply say –Jason, I hate your guts, you will pay.  Yay, we all get that.  Cut the shit people.

UNWRITTEN RULE: Never say this to someone with three children or more – ‘You must have your hands full!’  No shit lady.  Last time I looked I only had 2 hands . You do the math.

UNWRITTEN RULE:  Don’t tell someone they look ‘Tired’
Sure, they probably do look shithouse and possibly look like they could do with a bloody good 4 year sleep.  But what do you gain from pointing out the bleeding obvious?  What about when someone says that to you and prior to them opening their mouth, you'd been feeling on top of the world, not tired at all. Just like a venereal disease, keep that shit to yourself.

UNWRITTEN RULE: No dicktogs at the kiddie pool.  Pretty sure no further explanation is needed here. Just to clarify, guys - no dickstickers allowed at the public pool. In fact, unless you’re an Olympic Athlete, just don't wear them. Unlike the ladies, the more left to the imagination in that department the better.  Especially on a on a cold day.  We clear?

Unwritten Rule:  You don’t walk into other people’s houses UNANNOUNCED

Last night, it was kind of late, Phil and I were sitting up watching a DVD and we heard a rustling at the front door.  Luckily we weren’t doing anything. I mean, I know we’ve been together forever but that doesn’t mean from time to time some spontaneous lounge room action doesn’t take place.  Wait, yes it does but anyway, that's not the point.  In walks, unannounced, no knock, our new neighbour.  At 10pm.  ‘Hi guys, what’s cracking?’  Oh nothing much. Other than your skull.

UNWRITTEN RULE – Don’t be a Keith.  Keith was a guy from our childhood who always outstayed his welcome.  Never be a Keith in life.

UNWRITTEN RULE -  Don’t bring a six pack and drink a carton.  I generalise with this statement but it basically means don’t turn up to someone’s house for a function, BBQ, dinner, lunch, whatever and end up consuming way more than you brought with you and then be known for doing this consistently. When we were growing up we went to this one friend’s house a lot. They had these friends who every. single. weekend, would turn up with a six pack of beer, and drink a carton. It’s not cool.  It’s not etiquette.  It’s an unwritten rule.

UNWRITTEN RULE:  Do not stay on the phone when being served. Common courtesy yes?  Then why is it nearly impossible for people to just, oh I don’t know, show the person serving them that they can focus on their transaction and actually use their manners while doing so.  It should also be written into the fine print of this unwritten rule that by law, the Smartphone can be unceremoniously slapped from their hands if they fail to comply.  If their cheek gets caught in the crossfire, so be it.

Any unwritten rules you’d like to add?  


emlykd said...

Oh in true Bern Morley fashion u makin me laugh woman!!

Bert Maverick said...

Similar to the 6 pack rule is - when going to a party, don't bring XXXX and then drink anything but what you brought. Or don't bring snags and then be seen eating someone else's steak.

tonyelliott said...

I love this post. Well done on writing the unwritten. Might I just add one?

I take the liberty: Dear couples. When in a packed high street, strolling along at the pace of a crippled sloth, do not hold hands with your lover / bed-buddy / bff / whatever they are. Whilst you remain oblivious to the world around you, your unnecessary public display of connectedness is causing purposeful, considerate, busy, potentially already late people to step into oncoming traffic just to get around you. Your hand is not your companion’s life support system. You can get as close and sweaty as you like when you are out of the crowd (or join a crowd with the shared purpose if swinging is a known and entertained verb to you).

Holding hands on an ice rink suggests support. Holding hands with your child suggests protection and control. Linking arms on some quite riverside promenade is a beautiful sharing of warmth – but on a pathway already begging for more free square-footage the act of holding hands is tantamount to telling all other pavement uses that you think they are worthless w*nkers.

Mum on the Run said...

I think you've covered it.
I'm with you on every single one of those.
Those FB statuses driven this stickybeak friggin' mental.
"ooohh - I've got a secret. Can't reveal yet. Oooohh."
Don't post it then, moron.

And don't get me started on habitual free loaders...

Simony said...

Dear friend, your posts are so smart and funny and even sad sometimes but always real.
You are the friend I would like to have, but since we live in different continents, I am just glad we've at least met here in blog land.
Keep writing!!! We love it all.

So Now What? said...

What great comments! Agree Rob and Simony, that is a bloody lovely thing to say, thanks needed that.

Tony, I like it, you've really thought this through. Until recently moving to a big city, I didn't realise how annoying it is when you've got to move through lots of people swiftly. I'm adding this to the unwritten rules. But I can't write it of course. ;)

Madmother said...

Perfect! Lol.

Melc_1911 said...

Could not agree more with all of them. The FB one in particular annoys the shit out of me. Are they just attention seeking! And WTF with the new neighbour just waltzing in. I wouldn't do that to someone I have known for 20 years. Very funny post on something we all can relate to!

Romina Garcia said...

I want to kiss you on the mouth! May I add just one more, if you are at the dr's and there is a whole row available - don't friggen sit next to me!! That is all.

Nature Lover said...

I didn't realise this was an unwritten rule until it was broken in my presence:

Sunsets and sunrises are to be watched quietly, especially when from a popular viewing point.

I don't mean that they have to be watched silently, but loud conversations over your phone are not appropriate. While watching a sunset, no one wants to hear: "Oh, we've had no reception for days but we have it on this hill and ooooohhhh, the sunset is so pretty... How'd your blind date go? Was he cute?"

In short, show the same etiquette as you would at a movie theatre.

Telf said...

Bit of an extension to the 'don't talk on a mobile while being served rule', I have a rule that I try to adhere to that I will not answer my mobile phone if I am talking in person to somebody else. Sure,if I was someone really important like the Prime Minister, or a diplomat, or Brynne Edelstein's stylist, sure there may be a need, but not for me.

Fiona said...

lol, classic - especially the FB one!

I think you've covered all the main categories, but in the "shopping" one, don't be parking your trolley in the dead centre of the aisle, then leisurely reading the bloody labels oblivious to the fact that nobody can pass from either side!

Smudgeblurr said...

Hey Bern,
Loved the blog - and the pic - hilarious!

Third time I have tried to post a comment - hope it works this time...

How about don't ask a woman if she is pregnant unless you can see the baby crowning...


Photographer Mum said...

No queue jumping! I was about to be served by someone last night at the gym and someone else just pushed right in front of me, even though the server looked at me and asked for my card. Again, common curtesy!

Sass said...

The woolies self serve trolly lady is enough to push me over the edge.
They are the kind of people who stand in the middle of the escelators and stop unexpectedly in front of you at the shopping centre and cause you to bump violently into them.

Also, the dickface neighbourhood guests that insist on parking outside the front of my house blocking my driveway!!

Wendy said...

Again, fucking fanstatic, keep em coming. I'd like to add (and there's probably a shit load more I'll think of later) Don't push your poor unassuming baby/toddler onto the fucking street while you wait for the traffic to pass while you cross the road. If you want to be hit by a moving vehicle, put yourself out on the street and leave the poor kids out of it, dickheads. And if you're wearing a hat and sunscreen or a jumper and shoes, so the fuck should they! Ok , rant over, go about your business...

Ellie said...

Sort of like your last one about serving and the phone.

If I am lining up and the phone rings you serve/answer who was next not always answer the phone. That peeves me big time.

Fiona said...

I can't get the picture out of my head!

Wandering around packing for our move, muttering, "The fuck is this?" every time I open another junk-filled drawer!

Lisa Lintern said...

Love this post. My unwritten rule is don't start a sentence with "I hate to tell you..." because I know that inside you are bursting to. It's a favourite of my MIL. Urgghh.

KJ said...

This unwritten rule is especially for my mother -

Under no circumstances should you ever, EVER "like" your own Facebook status, comment, link or photo. It makes you look like an older person trying to be cool and failing. Oh, wait....

HowlerMonkeys said...

Nice one, Bern!

I would add, because there ARE a number of stay-at-home dads like myself out there, If you see me at the shops/park/pool/etc with my kids, but without my partner, DON'T ASK ME IF I'M FUCKING 'BABYSITTING'. It's my JOB. I do it EVERY DAY.

Ah, that feels better.

Kelly Exeter said...

Yes, yes and yes! ESPECIALLY the facebook one!

My other favourite unwritten rule is in public showers (like say gym or pool) - if there are like 6 showers, and I am the only one in there, don't take the one closest to me ... take the one FURTHEST AWAY PLEASE!

And when we're standing in line, there should be a full body width between me and you. There is NEVER an acceptable situation for you to be standing RIGHT ON on my shoulder!!

Personal space issues much? God yes.

Twitchy said...

Seriously afraid I might start my grievance list and never stop. So hard to choose...

If you're behind me in the Coles/Kmart etc queue then do not be so up my butt that you are shuffling into me, or could spy my PIN during my transaction. Back.the.Fuck.Off. I don't know you. Leave some space between us!

Drivers, if it's all clear, do not come to a near halt in the centre of the main road before making a wide, right-angle left turn into the side street, forcing traffic to a stop behind you. Slow down, taper left and *keep moving* so everyone else can!

Ooh Bern that felt good. You enabler, you.

Lisa said...

Hi Bern, I haven't laughed this much in ages. I definately agree with the Facebook unwritten rule - seriously, the "I've got a secret, but I'm not sharing" crap should've stopped in primary school. I'm always tempted to write "I don't care!!"
Fiona's comment regarding the shopping trolley in the middle of the aisle, brings to mind a mum from school. At kinder, she would park her baby's pram in the middle of the corrider or doorway, making it really annoying for the mum and child running late (yes, me!) to get into the room at maximum speed!FFS move!!!! Just the other week at school, the same woman tied her dog up to the entrance gate (didn't realise I was so good at hurdles), and upon arriving at the classroom, her bloody toddler was in the doorway on her bike. Again, FFS GET OUT OF THE WAY!!!!

stinkb0mb said...

the last one can be applied to the person doing the serving too. i've lost count of the amount of times i've been served by cashiers who are either talking on the phone while serving me or busily chatting away to the next cashier and not even paying me any attention while they process my purchses! heck i've even managed to be served without being spoken to at all!!

Sif said...

Don't be a Keith, love it! I have had a few friends (and they are lovely people) who I have been for to firmly escort to their car. It's no fun to be a hostess and end the visit by saying, 'Okay, let me help you get out to the car.' It's awkward.

Muddled Up Mumma said...

Agree with you on all of these. What is with that neighbor of yours? I would add.. Always stay to the left of the escalator/footpath/walkway and let faster people get past.

Easy Peasy Kids said...

Firstly I'm seriously falling in love with you or your writing or both. My unwritten rules are don't say "Snap out of it", presuming stuff about me and my kids and saying it in front of them because they is a big age gap "Oh are they from the same dad? is one adopted?"
Also my pet unwritten is don't bring a bottle to share, then not end up sharing. Nx

Alex aka WHOA MUMMA! said...

Don't say "You're looking SWELL!" to a swollen pregnant woman.

Heard 3 times today.

F*ck off.

Dan Hanks said...

Love it! But I have to add: stairs, escalators, ramps... climb them, ride them, then MOVE OUT OF THE FUCKING WAY. Do not stop at the top or bottom to take a look around. There are people now stuck behind you who already know where they are going in life and they are now contemplating ending yours prematurely.

Sarah said...

I love this. You are so right. And apparently that vague thing on Facebook is called 'Vaguebooking'.
My unwritten rules:
1. Don't be tight about splitting bills, but don't take the piss either. When I go out for a meal, budget to spend $30-40 and order accordingly, only to have some one at the end of the table order bottle after bottle of wine, and then say "Let's just split it, hey? It's $80 each", be aware that I will not stand for that shit. Ditto people who hand you the $18.75 for their meal, having conveniently forgotten the garlic bread in the middle of the table that they helped themselves to.
2. Do not say to a tall person, every single time you see them, "Wow, you really are tall." We get it. We know we are tall.

3. When traffic is merging, every second car should let the next car in front. If you speed up to avoid letting one car in, just to be that one car ahead, you screw the system and those behind you start to do similarly arsehole-like things. Thus creating a butterfly effect of road rage.

4. When it's really hot or really cold, you can say so once, but please refrain from continually saying all day "Man it's HOT!!" as though no one else is hot. This reminds me of that Denis Leary song "asshole": " I walk around in the summertime saying how about this heat!?"

*end rant*
(But Bern, you asked).

Gabrielle said...

Don't take a dump in the middle toilet. If there are three cubicles and they're all empty, take the end one. You don't need to be the centre of attention when you're taking a shit.

Torsa said...

what a bunch of grumpy people. some pour souls are just trying to pass the time of day with you - and you dont like how they do it. clearly you would much rather people just ignored you. I get the personal space thing - but none of the other comments you all hate seem to be malicious or ill intended.

Max Holiday said...

Absolutely gorgeous! I loved thge picture with this little angel so disappointed for the strange "pony", hahaha! This made my day! :))

Anonymous said...

um, reckon the speedo's at the pool are fine, if you are there to do laps. not fine if you are hang'n with your 3 year old or at the beach so much.

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