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At 2 a.m., is there anything to like?

It's an irritating world.

That thought occurred to Dennis Schrader when he woke up at 2 a.m. recently and couldn't get back to sleep. So he typed up the following document, which he titled "Just a list of things I don't care for, I really don't like or they just p--- me off."

Took him till 4:30 a.m.

Schrader, 61, of Odessa, is a retired mobile home builder known to his friends as Dennis the Menace. Some will remember him as the baseball memorabilia collector profiled in Floridian by Jeff Klinkenberg in 2006.

Schrader made his list mostly for laughs, and when he passes it out to friends, he gets them. (He gave a copy to Klinkenberg when they bumped into each other at a Rays game.) Here it is, mostly as he wrote it, but edited for space and, arguably, taste.

Mike Wilson, Times staff writer

Reality Shows, zip lock plastic food bags that don't zip back, golfer's clothes, young guys with a lump of tobacco under their bottom lip, ear rings on men, those little flags flying out your car window with your team logo on them, burnt hot dogs going round and round on rollers at the 7/11, interstate traffic, those bed pan helmets on bicycle riders, microwave bread that gets soggy, microwave popcorn that doesn't pop all the way, people not using blinkers, those ridiculous blue tube things in someone's ear, baseball caps on backwards, dealing with anyone (especially at McDonald's ) that doesn't speak English, bumper stickers telling me how great your grandchildren are doing in school, bald men who dye their hair and flip it all the way over from one side.

Pants that show your underwear and or butt crack and are two foot longer and two sizes bigger than they need to be so you have to hold them up as you walk and you look like ya got a load . . .

A cashier asking me if I wanna give a dollar to Jerry's kids. Silent farters, grossly tattooed women, people that have 30 or more coupons in front of me at the grocery market, cardboard home made garage sale signs, a huge amount of TV commercials at one time, watching Ellen DeGeneres trying to dance, people that high-five all the time, the lottery people telling me how much money goes toward education, in-grown hair in my nose, American Idol Judges, having to brake for animals . . . Why don't they just look out for the cars?

Bobble head dolls, beanie babies and two dozen hats in the back window of someone's car. Seeing people picking up dog poop with a plastic bag. Diet sodas or anything diet for that matter. People that blame things on Global Warming. Mailmen driving on the wrong side of the car. Michael Vick. Price of Real Estate taxes, insurance and gasoline. Andy Rooney's eyebrows.

Having to order a pie in advance for Thanksgiving from the Village Inn. Showing me on the news those jerks all applauding at 5 pm when the Stock Market closes. Following a car at night with the little brats watching TV in the back of the family SUV. Having to travel anywhere during Spring Break. Showing TV weathermen on the beach during a hurricane telling me it's windy and the surf's up. Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade is now a Broadway Show. Someone trying to sing Oh Canada, Oh Canada. Mold on Cheese, rap music, boom boxes, and two part movies on TV.

Food servers that won't write your order down. The sound a Styrofoam cooler makes sitting in the back seat of your car. Brown lettuce, a paper cut, child pornography, spam e-mail, changing light bulbs, worn out windshield wipers and tank tops on hairy back men (or women).

Burning the roof of your mouth or tongue on pizza. Wheels on cars that keep turning after the car stops. Faking me out at Easter with a chocolate bunny that ain't "solid" chocolate. A rained-out anything. Garlic breath, love bugs and anyone with an overabundance of hair growing out their nose or ears.

The presidential election campaign being two years long and any kind of political debate. The fact they never show any of the Ed Sullivan Show reruns. That blinking light on the roof of a school bus. Something that says "Open Here" but won't. Empty roll of toilet paper and no spare. When they drop off a phone book at your front door and it gets wet. The horoscope in the newspaper that tells you squat, the gap in David Letterman's teeth.

Joggers that use the street rather than the sidewalk, dread locks, hair two foot long hanging out of the back of a football helmet, people that just have to have Starbucks coffee, soybean tasting hamburgers, all Wal-Mart shoppers, how stupid Al Gore is, someone asking me "paper or plastic?" Having to check the air pressure in my tires, oil spills, hangovers, paying Vanna $250.00 for a vowel.

Trying to open anything foiled like beef bullion cubes or those little triangles of cheese at Christmas time. Lines at airports, Disney World or any lines in general. Trading on line, Al Roker, nuclear anything, mail from the AARP, Prince and news reports of a beached whale or someone helping a sea turtle back into the water.

Having to create a screen name and a password. Sea gulls, someone calling me Dude, the name Leroy, and rednecks with a NASCAR number on their truck rear window.

Someone drinking milk and has a white mustache around their mouth. Tiles falling off the space shuttle, the noise a leaf blower or a weed eater makes, Donnie and Marie Osmond's teeth, those animals in your car window with suction cups on their feet, Doppler radar and the fact that "whatever happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas." (Who cares?)

Dogs that hump your leg, flies, fleas, ants and snakes. Not hitting the lotto, mega money or fantasy five. When a NFL coach throws out that dumb red flag and it delays the game, the TV sports time taken up by the Tour De France, the TV commercial showing that the H's are missing and thinking outside the bun. Motor trend car of the Year, E-Trade, or all the hype for hours before the Super Bowl.

And most of all, having an erection for over four hours.

Word for Word is an occasional feature excerpting passages of interest from books, magazines, Web sites and other sources. The text may be edited for space but the original spelling, grammar and punctuation are unchanged.

Word for Word: What's to dislike at 2 a.m.?

At 2 a.m., is there anything to like? 05/17/08 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 21, 2008 10:38am]
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