Back in my early teaching days, if we were celebrating someone's birthday with the usual slab of cake in the staffroom we would give that someone carte blanche to have a rant and a rave. This was the birthday rant. About anything and to anyone, but it could only last on your birthday.
Needless to say no-one ever took up the mantle seriously but we would all have a 'giggle' at who we'd choose to unleash our birthday rant to. Usually that kid who took it upon themselves to make your Monday period 1 lesson a living hell or the suit in the office that had forgotten what a classroom looked like but insisted on telling you what you were doing wrong.
No, we all took the higher ground. Unless the birthday celebrations went on too late and got a little too messy that night. Suddenly, everyone would be claiming their birthday rant!
But doesn't age give you that right to, how shall I put it, give people a piece of your mind? I'm spending some time considering this because I still cringe at the times when, upon discovering the price of an untagged item at the till, my mum had no qualms about complaining "How much? That's ridiculous, put it back Nicola" and I'd have to skulk away with burning cheeks back along the queuing aisle. Why couldn't she just pay it and return it later? I'd think with my no-responsibility-no-damn-clue-attitude.
However, it was her money, her choice, her right to raise her voice wasn't it? Maybe. And I do find myself irked more and more about poor customer service, the behaviour of people in the street or in their cars (don't get me started on kids without seatbelts) and yes, things that are ridiculously priced.
So perhaps Mum was right to voice her consumer distaste. Maybe we do get to a point in our lives where we think Nope I'm gong to have to say something about this. Whether it's paying a joke for a plain white t-shirt or when the shop owner in the village corner shop doesn't look you in the eye or thank you for your custom but is happy to take your money.
I don't think ranting is in my nature but I can certainly string together a strong word or two. And maybe I'll wait to re-enact the whole How much? scenario to embarrass my own three daughters another time ...my day will come.
Until then, I will continue to save my tirades for the TV...I'm good at that.