Passive-aggressive notes. Thanks!!!

I am so late to this party I almost wouldn’t mention it, except I’ve been compulsively reading the entire archive. So, if you want the next hour of your life to suddenly disappear, here you go:

Passive Aggressive Notes

Peter’s cookies

(This one is a joke, obvy, and cookie-related, but sadly/hilariously most of them aren’t.)

Ah, what a tour through the world of individual problems with common living spaces. It could, but for the advent of typing and the special form of Stephen-King-prolific diatribe it permits, apply just as well to the problems of communal living 10,000 years ago — stealing food, leaving traces of bodily functions, and generally leaving a mess. I can envision Grok painting a spear on the cave wall above his stash mammoth jerky – Og, this means you!

There are three general categories:

Join me on a personal anecdote.

When I first started living with my male housemate, I rode his ass constantly, usually about dishes and kitchen counters. Yeah, *I* leave dirty dishes, but when *I* do it it’s *my* mess, right? It’s my food, not some suspicious dude food. It’s my toothpaste glops, which are white — not HIS toothpaste glops, which are green. Green!

Eventually I dialed it down a little, since nagging was accomplishing nothing except making him real quiet when I came in the kitchen while he was cooking something.

Then I got real busy for two weeks and was hardly in the house. When I came back — NOTHING HAD EXPLODED. The circle of life had continued. His natural dish-washing latency actually turned out to be mine + 6 hours. I’d just never given myself a chance to find out, because whenever he did something I assumed it was because I had asked him to.

(This also applies in the art department — if you check up on everyone, you begin to believe that things are only getting done because you’re checking up. If you tell your people at the outset that if they need anything — ANYTHING — just to let you know — things still get done and everybody’s job satisfaction goes up.)

Today we live in a much smaller space with a smaller kitchen and excellent harmony.

Oh — and this.

I’ve been a food-stealer. I’ve been a horrific food-stealer. I’ve been a horrific roommate, also, but we’ll save those tales. Regarding food-stealing — I couldn’t tell you why I did it. I could weave you an addict’s web of excuses, but it’s safe to say I was aware that whoever’s food it was was rather counting on it being there later, and not indifferent to the fact that it wasn’t. Also safe to say I never entertained illusions it was “public” food. I would also do things like try to take a never-noticeable one… or two… and then annihilate so many that the few I left would add insult to injury — the owner returning to his magic cookie bars, down to 10 where there used to be thirty, and thinking, “What kind of idiot must the thief think I am that I wouldn’t know the difference?”)

Please understand — it wasn’t personal. Unethical, dishonest, criminal and rude, but not personal.

(OK — but there was some food I DIDN’T steal, and although I have recently been entangled with my housemate’s goober grape I am much better about being honest about what I’ve done and replacing it. Point is, if you worked with me or lived with me ever in your life, and you saw some food go missing, please don’t assume it’s me. Feel free to ask. It was probably me, but maybe not.)

How could you have dealt with me in my prime food-stealing hours?

Lock it up. I can’t think of another way. Common decency didn’t stop me — a pointed note won’t. Even the mortification of getting caught or the pain of poisoning would only chasten me for a couple of months.

I’m sorry. Natasha — wherever you are — I owe you some ice cream.


Being passive-aggressive isn’t nice, and it hurts relationships and the human spiritual condition. Sorry about that. Here’s a cookie.

Cookie bar
Saved you one

(I’m working through the cookie pictures thing. But I seriously almost dropped $25 at Barnes & Noble on Martha Stewart’s Cookies because the pictures were so outrageously beautiful. Shallow depth of field + white background = cookie panic. Fortunately my gymmin’ partner literally — LITERALLY — held up a plush Easter duck to distract me away. Thank you, gymmin’ partner.


Draws. Sweats. Eats too much sugar-free candy.

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2 Responses

  1. Tory says:

    Utterly undeserved and utterly appreciated.

    I’ve found it very hard to hold grudges against other people ever since.

  2. Kim says:

    I forgave you awhile ago. 😉

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