Passive-aggressive notes from roommates, neighbors, coworkers and strangers.
May 23, 2007 8:32 AM   Subscribe

His other site, Wrong K. Miller is also really good. ("There are lots of k.millers in the world. i get their gmail.")
posted by chunking express at 8:33 AM on May 23, 2007

"This card came with a box of homemade mandelbrot from my very own passive-aggressive jewish grandmother."

There are cookies called Mandelbrot?!

I have to make some fractal biscotti now.
posted by rossmik at 8:53 AM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]

Awesome. It's as if on-line etiquette is informing how people behave in the off-line, or so-called "real" world.

This can only lead to better things.
posted by psmealey at 8:55 AM on May 23, 2007

As seen on Metatalk.
posted by googly at 8:55 AM on May 23, 2007

Damn it. It's like an almost double.
posted by chunking express at 8:58 AM on May 23, 2007

Hey, you know what? Some people take the time to see if something's been posted before. It's kind of a rule around here? So, if in the future, you would do would be great. Or, you know, don't. Whatever you want. I mean, everybody else does, but, you know, if you don't have the time or whatever. I'm just sayin'.
posted by ColdChef at 9:04 AM on May 23, 2007 [14 favorites]

I don't think its strictly a double; lots more eyes will see it here than in a Metatalk comment. Just thought that k8t should get partial credit.
posted by googly at 9:07 AM on May 23, 2007

Needs more exclamation points, ColdChef.

Perhaps after a "Thanx!!!!"
posted by dersins at 9:08 AM on May 23, 2007

Hey ColdChef,
Have you considered that maybe people don't have as much time to surf the net as you??? I mean, some of us barely have enough time to check e-bay and hotmail, let alone search for these so-called "duplicates" you speak of. Maybe next time you could do us all a favor and think a minute before you go on your rants!!!

Oh, and by the way, WASH YOUR FUCKING DISHES!!!!!!!!!!!!
posted by Dr-Baa at 9:13 AM on May 23, 2007

How many Jewish grandmothers does it take to change a lightbulb?

None, I'll just sit here in the dark.
posted by Pollomacho at 9:15 AM on May 23, 2007 [2 favorites]

Help save kittens, stop masturbating ! Everytime you masturbate, God kills a kitten !
posted by elpapacito at 9:29 AM on May 23, 2007

Oh wow, my friends bought a house in a somewhat older, affluent neighborhood. The neighbors absolutely resent young 20 year olds living there, most are 60+ years old. They don't have parties, but they do have people over very frequently. It never gets loud. Some of the things that happened:

(1) Next door neighbor sent them a nice note not to grow marijuana in the back yard. This lead to a very, very Mr. Burns-esque confrontation ("I don't know what you think marijuana is ..." "I said cut it down!").

(2) One neighbor put 4 foot high rebars every 4-5 feet at the edge of their yard. This is so that if you park in front of the yard, one side of the car can effectively not get out without hitting the rebar when opening the door. He didn't like people stepping out of his car onto their yard. Before this he left all kinds of passive aggressive notes on not parking in front of his house. Keep in mind there are no laws violated here, he just doesn't like people parking in front of his house.

(3) Another neighbor kept complaining they didn't know how to cut their yard. They didn't have the time to spend all day pulling weeds and meticulously manicuring the yard, so they decided to appease the neighbor by hiring a lawn service. Lawn service (which was expensive) would cut their yard. My friends got a note on their door saying that they should hire an English speaking lawn service.

These neighbors are never very confrontational, so my friends blow it off as older, retired people with nothing better to do. The marijuana thing was the funniest, because we could not figure out which plant he thought was marijuana.
posted by geoff. at 9:33 AM on May 23, 2007 [4 favorites]

Not, but close!
posted by notsnot at 9:33 AM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]

this site that looks like it's run by the same person is also pretty hilarious -- and oddly compelling, in a voyeuristic sort of way.

the stated m.o.: "my attempt to catalog some of the many, many misdirected messages i’ve gotten since claiming “” in 2004."

this chain of e-mails might be my favorite so far, but the one-liner commentary on posts like this one is pretty great, too.
posted by headphonegirl at 9:48 AM on May 23, 2007

He didn't like people stepping out of his car onto their yard....Keep in mind there are no laws violated here, he just doesn't like people parking in front of his house.

Making allowances for a possible grammar mistake, wouldn't this technically be trespassing? And even if it is technically not, having your grass trampled (if not actually driven on) by frequent, high-volume traffic is pretty annoying.
posted by DU at 9:54 AM on May 23, 2007

DU, most of the time you don't 'own' the land that is between the street and the side walk, the city does.
posted by chunking express at 10:07 AM on May 23, 2007

headphonegirl, maybe you didn't notice I had already linked to that site in my first comment? It's cool with me though if you want to link to it again and take credit, though. I don't care.
posted by chunking express at 10:09 AM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]

I'd love for a bunch of 20-somethings to move in next door. Especially if they're female, not as ugly as me, nudist, friendly rich, generous, know who Stendhal was and grow marijuana. It'd be a big bonus if they're talented with acoustic instruments too, like clarinet and kazoo.
posted by davy at 10:09 AM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]

Oh well, if it's between the street and sidewalk that's another thing. I thought we were talking about his YARD yard. My own yard doesn't have a sidewalk between it and a high traffic (car, pedestrian AND parking) street and it is sometimes annoying.
posted by DU at 10:12 AM on May 23, 2007

posted by OmieWise at 10:24 AM on May 23, 2007

I don't think it's legally trespassing unless the land is posted, or you're told to leave and don't. So if geoff's friends step out of their car onto H. A. Youkids' lawn, then step right off again, they aren't trespassing, and he can't shoot 'em. But then, IANAL. [Bolded for hermitosis's reading pleasure.]
posted by Kirth Gerson at 10:30 AM on May 23, 2007

I just sent this to a lot of my coworkers. In a high-traffic hallway near my office, there's a file room with several bitter people that work in it. They've put up a sign saying "QUIET PLEASE THIS IS A WORK AREA", and they glare at anyone who's having a conversation as they walk by and put out EXTRA notes when they think people have been too loud. They never just, you know, shut their door.

Everyone else laughs at them and talks extra loud as they go by to piss them off.
posted by gurple at 10:33 AM on May 23, 2007

My incredibly retentive mother was the QUEEN of passive agressive notes when I was I was a teenager. By the time I moved out of her house in a flurry of drama at 17, it had gotten to where I just. Couldn't. Handle it. Anymore. I was working 2 jobs and going to school full time and yet there were instructions left EVERYWHERE for me. Post its on the door of my room, on my bathroom mirror, on the back of the front door, the dry erase board on the fridge... just everywhere. All telling me about all of the things I was supposed to do in order to be a good young adult and daughter.

One night, about a week before I announced that I was moving out, I had a nightmare. To this day, it's one of the most terrifying nightmares of my life although it sounds incredibly funny. I shall now share that nightmare with you. Sit down. Grab a soda.

So there I was, the 17 year old -- totally hot although I didn't know it -- version of me. It was a gorgeous summer day in California and I was walking through a beautiful field of grass and flowers, kind of like the Sound of Music minus the singing & dirndl. Anyhow, suddenly I heard a rustling noise behind me. I stopped, not sure what to think. I looked back and there... in the distance... was a GIGANTIC DRY ERASE BOARD on the horizon. It was coming towards me fast. It was about 8 feet tall and it obviously had some kind of violence on its mind. So I ran from the evil, giant dry erase board as fast as my little legs would carry me. Every once in a while I'd trip and look back and IT WAS GAINING ON ME so I would struggle back to my feet in a panic, scared for my life.

I ran fast, with all of the survival instincts I had in my body, and then I came to a tree. I ran to the other side of the tree, my back against it. I was breathing hard and trying to remain still, hoping that I had lost the giant dry erase board and had found my way to safety. I listened for it, but heard nothing. I started to slow my breathing down as I leaned, relieved, against the tree. I finally turned around to see, as I had hoped, an empty pasture. I was safe. I smiled.

Suddenly, as I was about to resume my happy walk through nature, I heard another noise. Kind of a creepy fluttering noise. That was when the Post-Its began to attack my legs, attaching themselves to me like adhesive piranhas. I screamed. That's when I woke up.

So yeah, I don't do the passive aggressive note thing.
posted by miss lynnster at 10:38 AM on May 23, 2007 [12 favorites]

When I moved out of my first shared house in Philadelphia, I was wide open as to the sorts of living situations I would accept -- roommate, single, shared, didn't matter. I had only one major stipulation: I needed to live in a house with no signs.
posted by Miko at 10:41 AM on May 23, 2007

In college, I had a hallmate (hallwaymate?) who was a strange, eccentric loner who constantly accused me of using his soap. Each time, I would patiently and calmly remind him that I had my very own soap, right there on the ground, that I was perfectly happy using, as did the third guy on the hall. Didn't matter, though. It culminated one day when I walked into the bathroom and saw, written in soap on our extremely big bathroom mirror, "GET YOUR OWN FUCKING SOAP" and then a blob that I think was meant to be a skull and crossbones. I guess that's more "insane aggressive" than passive. But now I wish I'd taken a photo.
posted by ORthey at 10:54 AM on May 23, 2007

A former room mate of mine used to leave notes for myself and other room mate all the time. We HATED it. I don't even remember the subject matter, but I used to find them on my pillow.

When he went so far as to make a poster sized map of the apartment pointing out all the locations of the garbage cans, we had to just laugh. We had guests over constantly (plenty of his friends, as well as our own) and the map stood as a public monument to his analness (anality?). I don't think any retribution we could have thought up would have even come close.
posted by utsutsu at 11:01 AM on May 23, 2007

Making allowances for a possible grammar mistake, wouldn't this technically be trespassing? And even if it is technically not, having your grass trampled (if not actually driven on) by frequent, high-volume traffic is pretty annoying.

Yeah it is getting out of a car, then walking the foot or so to the sidewalk, then going to the house which is probably 10 or so yards away. I don't see how else to do it, except to have everyone pile out of the street-facing side, walk in the street until a driveway, then take the driveway to the sidewalk.

In any case it is somewhat absurd. He's not operating a casino, and the grass isn't the 18th hole of a PGA tournament green.

I can't feel sorry for them. The lots are huge and carry large ranch style homes. The neighborhood was suburbia in the 40s-50s when most of the families moved in. It is now considered "urban", and developers are buying up lots as people die off and putting huge McMansions in their place. All this has the advantage of driving said friend's property through the roof, even accounting for the downturn in the housing market.
posted by geoff. at 11:15 AM on May 23, 2007

Okay, I'm going to admit to something VERY passive-aggressive, and VERY nasty. Boys, you might want to skip this comment.

I had a roommate who was a slob. Just nasty-ass, dirty slob. She never took out the trash, to the trash room conveniently located about 2 doors down. She let mold grow on dishes, in the fridge and in the coffee maker. She had an eating disorder and used to eat all my stuff, just to throw it all back up; this was particularly annoying. However, I managed to roll with all of that, locking my food up in my room where possible after having discussed it with her to no avail, trying to keep the place clean on my own, etc.

I didn't go full-on passive-aggressive until the morning I walked into our shared walk-in closet to get dressed, and was greeted by the sight of a used sanitary napkin stuck to the rug in the middle of the floor. I picked it up (with a paper towel or 700) and stuck it to her pillow. It never happened again.
posted by jennaratrix at 11:31 AM on May 23, 2007 [2 favorites]

I had a roommate who, instead of leaving notes everywhere, sent me an email almost every day letting me know that I'd done something wrong again, like I'd put the toilet paper on the holder wrong, or that I couldn't use the crisper in the fridge because it was "hers." After awhile I blocked her email address and told her to just tell me face to face instead. But I regretted that, because she turned from passive-aggressive to aggressive-aggressive and would yell or shout at me every time I saw her. At least the emails I could just roll my eyes and ignore her.
posted by sutel at 11:34 AM on May 23, 2007

One Christmas, when I was in my late teens, I opened a gift from my mom. Inside I found three rolls of toilet paper and illustrated instructions detailing how to properly replace an empty roll. I had no idea my mom knew how to draw technical diagrams.

I wish I still had those instructions.
posted by bondcliff at 11:34 AM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]

I just don't understand passive-aggressive. In my family we've always had the "throw objects" and scream way of handling things - something I've continued on in tradition.

Much easier to sort stuff out that way.
posted by gomichild at 11:41 AM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]

A university friend of mine came up with the perfect solution to housemates drinking his juice; he pissed in it, and chuckled to himself when they continued to steal it afterwards.
posted by The Card Cheat at 12:04 PM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]

I've tried to be passive-agressive about, say, doing the dishes. The best I've was simply to tell them how many times in a row I've done the dishes or taken out the garbage. Well, that and throwing all of the garbage into the offending roommates room.

Never went with writing notes though.
posted by Green With You at 12:12 PM on May 23, 2007

Sweet! Now I have something to do with that camera phone pic I took at my last job. I knew I saved it for something! Thx for the link. Here's my submission.
posted by sweetwildandmad at 12:44 PM on May 23, 2007

I had this completely absent-minded housemate who was totally oblivious to the messes he'd leave in the kitchen and thus ended up blaming most of them on me, usually via a note of some kind. The best one was after I supposedly let our knives develop rust by not drying them off completely. He bought a completely new set and left one of the old ones on the counter, with Sharpie-circled rust spots and extensive instructions on how to clean silverware. Note: I had never even seen that knife before.
posted by metaly at 1:17 PM on May 23, 2007

What a fantastic site; I laughed and cried.

Many years ago, while living in a shared house, I came home one night to "Whoever is eating my whole-grain waffles, please tell me so I don't have to evict anyone. Thanks!!"

The waffle bandit was never caught, and Insane Waffle Woman upped the ante after her boyfriend's wallet disappeared. Police were involved.

Being broke and naive, I was terrified, but nothing could have prepared me for my next (and last) passive-aggressive roommate, who will get his own entire chapter in my autobiography.

Chapter 7: Marty. May he rest in peace.
posted by jake at 1:27 PM on May 23, 2007

I don't leave notes, but whenever my husband does something that pisses me off, I whisper about it under my breath in the next room. He has very good hearing, and this always sends him into a frothy rage. Never fails to cheer me up.
posted by Koko at 1:40 PM on May 23, 2007

My college boyfriend shared an apartment with 4 other dudes. I was sleeping over one night, and when I got up to use the bathroom I noticed that two of them had conspired to make a list of "10 Bathroom Commandments", posted over the toilet. Like "Thou shalt not leave an empty roll on the toilet paper roll holder" and "Thou shalt thoroughly flush any bodily waste."

posted by muddgirl at 1:41 PM on May 23, 2007

I had a roommate who emailed me once when I left a water glass in the sink overnight. He's dead now.
posted by Dormant Gorilla at 3:28 PM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]

Oh, I've got a good one. I work with a bunch of total slobs.

Amusing photo left by one of the girls in our dispatch office.
posted by drstein at 3:36 PM on May 23, 2007

Good heavens. I hope none of you Mefites gets angry at ME.
posted by davy at 4:05 PM on May 23, 2007

I managed to get the apartment underneath the gaggle of 20 year-old rap fans who got in with someone's parents signing the lease. I've left a few notes to them about their noise, the last one said "I can hear the lyrics. Eminem is WAK. Turn it down to a reasonable volume please. (& get some taste!)"
posted by autodidact at 5:32 PM on May 23, 2007

Fun site! Thanks.

I do admit to writing passive-aggressive notes to one of my college house mates, things along the lines of "If I ever walk into the kitchen again and find a high-as-a-kite naked trucker dude there, your latest one night stand, I'm telling the landlady and will try to get you evicted."

There was just no other way to communicate with her, as she never came home before I was asleep, wouldn't answer knocks on her door when I know she was there, and would never answer the phone. I'm glad too, as I know that she hated my notes and moved out when her one-year lease expired. Weird, she seemed so nice when she first moved in, but boy howdy did I learn a lesson about letting the landlady find me a house mate...
posted by gemmy at 7:08 PM on May 23, 2007

My favorite story regarding passive agressive dorm incidents involved a stack of dirty dishes left in a sink so long that one of the hall residents got fed up and placed them all in the shower. I can only assume that the shower was then turned on, but I heard about this story second hand. Perhaps it is just a legend, but it's a pretty good one.

Where I work we have a "communications log" which is supposed to be for memos like "Oh hey guys, this thing broke." Or "When I was closing last night, I was mugged by a bunch of bandits seeking coffee, which is why there isn't anymore." Instead, it's turned into a huge passive aggressive fest on the part of this one girl who every time she opens writes really long notes about how those of us who close need to remember to wipe every surface of the café.

It makes me want to take each sheet of paper from that damned notebook and wipe my butt with it.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 7:41 PM on May 23, 2007

Passive-aggressive notes seem to be the avenue most often employed by those who stare at their shoes and mumble when they actually confront the source of their annoyance. I will throw your note in the trash, or save it for future amusement; if I bothered you enough to speak to me, then I will treat you with common courtesy and respect.
posted by Dark Messiah at 8:23 PM on May 23, 2007

I usually start out with the direct, polite "hey can you please do/don't do ____" request in person. But once I've reached my limit of what I consider reasonable requests (say, 4 times over the course of a couple of weeks for a roommate to stop slamming doors), I'll leave a note. Nothing wordy, just "please don't slam this door."

"This is super passive-aggressive and bossy" was the response note.
posted by adamp88 at 3:36 PM on May 24, 2007

Those notes are as passive-agressive as rain on your wedding day is "ironic".
posted by -harlequin- at 6:23 PM on May 24, 2007

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