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Top Ten Things You’re Not Allowed To Hate

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Posted September 13, 2012 by Lisa McInerney in Ramp Lists

‘Yes,’ as the mob shouts in unison in The Life Of Brian, ‘We are all individuals’.  It’d be a very dull world indeed if we all felt the same level of fanatical devotion to exactly the same things; there’d be no cinema genres, no local cuisine, and no need at all for Simon Cowell*. For the most part, we accept that light debate is healthy, and that specialised interests make meeting new people a spicy exercise indeed. And yet there are some things people just aren’t allowed to hate. Things whose denigration, no matter how mild, gets everyone extremely upset. Things it’s practically illegal to dislike. Here are our eleven Top Ten things beloved of, and zealously protected by, the masses.

11. Tea

Quite the local issue, this. Tea is more than just a diuretic relief in Ireland; it’s a social ritual. Studies show that 79% of the electricity used in Ireland is down to the incessant boiling of kettles, and Pauline McLynn still struggles to be taken seriously as an actress against the foreign misconception that her Mrs. Doyle was a classic comic character. To say you don’t like tea is to spit in the face of your heritage. To turn down the offer of a drop of scald is to turn up demanding fisticuffs. It is an offense, especially in rural Ireland, to baulk at tea. Best to just develop a taste for it and avoid bloodshed.

10. Portal

When Valve released their first-person, platform puzzler, Portal in 2007, it garnered great reviews and shortly thereafter a rabid fanbase. With its idiosyncratic humour and clever physics, it quickly reached iconic status and it’d take some sort of collective psychosis to knock it back down again. Its follow-up only prolonged the adoration, even though it had Stephen Merchant in. Now, the Portal series is a yardstick for gaming knowledge and a necessary bullet point on the CV of anyone wishing to be accepted into the community. If you don’t like Portal – whether physics puzzle games float your boat is inconsequential – you’re not a gamer. You must set fire to your joypad and take up crochet.

9. The Wire

If you don’t like The Wire, you don’t like when shit gets real. That’s a problem because this is a world in which shit gets real. Stop kidding yourself, you juvenile tumbleweed.

8. Harry Potter

J.K. Rowling wrote the Harry Potter books for children, but what would she know? She’s only a children’s author. The Harry Potter series has transcended its original genre and become some sort of cultural creed, where everyone is expected to know which Hogwarts house they belong to or why exactly every single British actor ever birthed had to preen their way through the movie adaptations. If you don’t like Harry Potter, you are some sort of terrible snob for whom the joy of existence has long since been snuffed out by the piss stream of your own conceit. You’re also jealous. Don’t be jealous of J.K. Rowling, for she can write books that can crack skulls.

7. Awful pop music in nightclubs

If you are out for the night, and you’ve had a couple of Babychams, it is required by law that you fritter your buzz away in a neon dive filled with desperately horny people who walk, dance and wee like they’re playing hopscotch on a listing ship. If you don’t like Rihanna, Flo Rida or the jarring interjection of ‘Brewing Up A Storm’ at half one on a Sunday morning, then when, pray tell, are you going to grow a sense of humour? Bad music, being groped by wonky-eyed boggers, and being rendered momentarily disabled by a sticky patch on the floor is all part of being a funmeister.

6. Chocolate

Everyone likes chocolate. It’s because, chocolate. It’s scientifically proven. If you do not like chocolate, you’re clearly a creationist or you trollin’. For shame.

5. Beyoncé

Beyoncé is fierce. She is a fierce lady who does fancy dancing and is more coordinated than a fussybreeches’ tie rack. She is also driven, hard-working, ambitious, determined and motivated. It is an absolute feat of human endurance that she can be all of those things whilst dancing at the same time, and also sometimes singing and helping Jay-Z with his PR gaffes. Even if you don’t usually like bland pop music about boys, dancing, and being fierce, you are required by… something to be madly in love with Beyoncé and her achievements. Haters ain’t gonna hate. NOT ON OUR WATCH.

4. Bridesmaids

When Bridesmaids came out, it was the funniest film ever that had women in it and a perfect antidote to all of the other films that had women in them that weren’t funny at all, because Bridesmaids was really funny. Bridesmaids spoke to all women who were occasionally funny and slept with men and had problems with their mothers and went to the toilet. People who don’t like Bridemaids are misogynists or those women that are just jealous of other women, which is most women. Don’t be like women, like Bridesmaids!

3. Sexism

Sexism is bad in an arranged-marriages or not-allowing-ladies-to-vote kind of way, but otherwise it is totally innocuous. Not only that, but it is just a bit of fun, and in fact, you’re being nocuous if you take it seriously. Boobs are fun to look at, bums are fun to pinch, and being leered at is a rite of passage and a damn fine compliment, second only to being passionately made love to by Heathcliff in a patch of gorse. Sexism is the also the only reason the human race has been able to maintain for so long. Stop hating humanity, Andrea Dworkin.

2. Cats

Such is the regard for cats in the Information Age that one is entitled to theorise that the internet was created by Ancient Egyptians or, indeed, some sort of possible therianthropic cabal or super-secret Legion Of Furries or something. Why, you can even download special apps which turn your Facebook friends’ baby photos into photos of cats, or redirect you to charming, relaxing pictures of cats when you inadvertently click on offending material, like the Daily Mail or the home page for Crufts. It is therefore a truth universally acknowledged that a man in possession of a dose of ailurophobia must be in want of a kick up the arse. All praise our feline overlords!

1. Bacon

Delicious bacon. Bacon is the greatest foodstuff known to mankind; even those religious fellas who deny themselves porcine facegasms are only doing it because it’s the ultimate test of god-given willpower. Fry it, grill it, bake it, boil it, fry it again… bacon has turned us into a tribe of Homer Simpson clones and for good reason, because bacon is delicious. If you don’t like bacon, don’t eat bacon, or don’t have feelings about bacon either way, you may as well be exiled to the boundaries of civilisation, because you are a broken person who gets some sort of sexual thrill from being contrary. Vegetarians? Eat the fuckers; that’ll learn them.

 

*Though we concede that having no further use for Simon Cowell actually would make this world a better place.


About the Author

Lisa McInerney

Lisa’s soul is so damn sensitive, she has to invent and occupy parallel universes just to spread herself evenly. This is also known as being a frustrated novelist.

  • http://twitter.com/ElleEmSee Laura

    Cheese.
    Apparently cheese is something you are not allowed to hate. The hate I’m subject to for hating cheese. Goddammit, I can’t eat the stuff. It smells like feet, looks like plasticine and tastes like misery. Granted I’m lactose intolerant but that is besides the point.

    • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

      You’re right, it is utterly unforgivable to hate cheese. Cheese is the reason most of us get up in the morning so to say that you have different reasons for getting up in the morning is to display a wilful contrariness towards your fellow man.

      Also, I reckon it’s illegal to dislike Katie Taylor. Why, even to suggest she wouldn’t be able to clobber Batman in a fight is to call the wrath of the ages down upon you.

  • http://twitter.com/froodie Sarah Ní Riain

    Am I allowed to like both Portal and Crochet? Or is that confusing the issue?

    • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

      You are indeed allowed to like both, so long as you hate neither.

      • http://twitter.com/froodie Sarah Ní Riain

        I love EVERYTHING on this list, as I am a true child of the internet. Though I do wonder is the whole loving bacon thing a fascist conspiracy to prevent Jews and Muslims and Vegetarians from ever truly belonging on reddit.

        • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

          I reckon so. It’s stealth conditioning and it’s very clever.

  • http://twitter.com/beatingblog Karen Mulreid

    Sport. You’re not allowed to not like sport. I hate sport, all of it. I jsut don’t like it. But I’m shunned and met with stunned silences when I say this. ‘Ah now, you might not like football, but the golf is great isn’t it?’ they say, beseechingly. I hate sport. All of it. If there were no sport ever again, ever, it’d be no skin off my nose.

    • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

      How about sportish games, like snooker?

      • http://twitter.com/beatingblog Karen Mulreid

        No, hate that too. Snooker bores the arse off me, can’t bear it.

        • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

          It’s no good, Karen. You’re going to have to wear this dunce hat and sit in the shed until you’re fit to join humanity again.

          • http://twitter.com/beatingblog Karen Mulreid

            Ah I’m goin’, I’m goin’ *stomps off muttering*

  • Tara

    I hate when my boyfriend ignores me for hours to play Portal, does that count?

    I’m a failure of an Irish person as I really don’t like tea… HATE is a strong word but I could probably count on both hands the amount of cups I’ve had in my lifetime. I’d change if I could!!
    But chocolate and bacon is spot on. LISA how could you not include dogs!!

    • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

      I know tons of people who don’t like dogs and they don’t incur the same wrath as those that say they don’t like cats. Not liking cats is an internet crime that could see Eircom ripping the broadband right out of your house.

      Also, clearly your problem is with your boyfriend, not with Portal, so you’re in the clear. I recommend you give him a stern talking to and explain that he’s jeopardising your safety by inadvertently encouraging you to hate Portal. Doesn’t he know you could be OSTRACISED?

      You’re trying on the tea issue, so we’ll let that slide for now.

      • http://twitter.com/ElleEmSee Laura

        See I’d consider it more of a crime to hate dogs. Cats can be bastards at times. Dogs though? A dog would pull you out of a burning building. A cat would have started the fire in the first place in an attempt to murder you.

        • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

          There is absolutely no question that dogs are better people (you know what I mean), but hatred of cats is still, somehow, the bigger crime.

          My theory? Cats are running the world.

          • Dotty

            Or 4chan is running the world. *shudder*

  • Sinéad

    I don’t hate The Wire, but I have also never seen it…

    • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

      Well, when you do get around to it, obviously you will love it. JUST BECAUSE.

    • http://twitter.com/nuckpang Stephen R.

      What @lisamcinerney:disqus said. It’s a slow starter, but when you get into it, it’s an absolutely classic show.

  • http://twitter.com/nuckpang Stephen R.

    I used to love tea, but somewhere in the past I lost my way, and now I’m barely an Irishman as a result. I don’t even have a teapot in the flat…

    Btw, I would double down on the image you used for tea and suggest that you’re also not allowed to hate the Beatles. Much like time travel I know it seems possible to hate the Beatles in theory, but in reality? Nah, it just can’t happen.

    • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

      Oh, very good addition. Yes, it is positively forbidden to hate the Beatles. Also rather unthinkable. To claim so would be, as my nana would say, “Bad minded”.

      • http://twitter.com/ElleEmSee Laura

        As The Beatles are basically the closest thing I have to a religion, I genuinely think less of people if they tell me they don’t like them.

  • http://twitter.com/eolai Eolaí the Artist

    Em, I can’t stand chocolate. It’s like mud. And I don’t mean that in a tiger feet lonely this Christmas kind of way. I will however concede to sometimes eating it – but purely to deprive others. Not much though, because it’s like mud.

    • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

      *horrified silence from mob*

      • http://twitter.com/ElleEmSee Laura

        Good God.

  • Claire Gleeson

    Hmm. I hate tea, am indifferent to Beyonce and have never heard of Portal. But you’re spot on about The Wire. (Except seasons 2 and 5. You’re allowed to hate seasons 2 and 5. )

    But I know loads of people who hate cats; to me that seems to be far more socially acceptable than hating dogs…

    • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

      On the internet?

      4chan would have your guts for garters if they heard you saying that.

  • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

    I think it’s time for me to come clean, you guys.

    I hate eight of the things on this list. EIGHT.

    I’m going into hiding now.

  • Will

    I am allowed to and do hate cats. They are stupid. Stupid cats. The Wire is awesome. Everything else fails in comparison.

    • Sinéad

      +1. Cats are devious, molting and evil.

  • http://twitter.com/seanear1ey Seán Earley

    I hate cats. Bacon is awesome. Chocolatebacon is extra awesome.

    • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

      See, this could be an interesting conundrum for redditors.

      What if someone hates cats… but loves bacon?

  • Dotty

    Great article, but you forgot Chuck Norris Facts. And “spiritualism” – white middle-class people LOVE the Dalai Lama, because theocracy is a wonderful thing. Barf.

    • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

      That’s true. You gotta have a bit of spiritualism, to keep the ould chakras clear and to let everyone know you’re not actually a really shallow cynic.

      Expand the Chuck Norris Facts into all memes, all the time.

  • Niall

    “Boobs are fun to look at, bums are fun to pinch, and being leered at is a rite of passage and a damn fine compliment…”

    Is it just me, or does somebody seem to think that sexism is a one way street? Plenty of casual misandry and objectification of men doing the rounds as well, but sure that’s different and totally harmless, right?

    • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

      Not to bring the conversation down, as this is a comedy article, but it is different, as the social and historical context is worlds apart.

      That’s not to say that dehumanising men isn’t a bad thing. In particular, the image of a man as a bumbling fool so often used in advertising is counter-productive, and the whole “man up!” outlook, where men aren’t allowed to express emotion, is genuinely dangerous.

      But in terms of everyday sexism, it’s not helpful to imply that the objectification of women is only as widespread and deep-seated as its male counterpart. That simply isn’t the case and besides, there’s no need to attempt to lessen one injustice by comparing it with another.

      Also, the word count in the article kinda hampered me from turning this into an examination of sexism across both genders. But sure there’s always next week, wha’?

      • Niall

        Um, I should add that this is in no way directed at you or this site, just a general observation.

        • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

          Jaysus, I never realised I was getting so conditioned to immediately respond po-faced to perceived criticism. Columnists’ curse. I’ma put my comedy hat back on immediately.

    • Niall

      Oh, so it’s only a joke now? Guess I need to develop a sense of humour, right? ;)

      Good stuff otherwise, it’s just that I’m getting pretty sick of people (rightly) decrying misogyny and sexual harassment of women on the one hand, but running down and ogling men at any given opportunity on the other. Can’t have it both ways.

      More importantly, cats rule. As you were.

      • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

        What about the objectification of cats, though?

        But seriously, I know what you mean. If you’re opposed to one, you should be opposed to the other. Negative stereotyping of either gender (all women are bimbos/all men are violent) doesn’t help anyone; trampling all over others is no way to feel better about yourself.

  • http://twitter.com/stephenmulligan Stephen Mulligan

    Can’t abide Tea, horrid dishwatery cup of misery that it is. I make a mean cup of it (apparently), but I couldn’t allow it past my lips. And cats, oh, don’t get me started on those ungrateful bit-you-after-you-gave-them-milk-when-you-were-9-and-then-needed-a-tetanus little feckers. Also, had to google Portal. Who knew? Not me.

    • http://www.lisamcinerney.com Lisa McInerney

      If you’re not a gamer, Portal doesn’t apply. Likewise, I believe it’s acceptable for dudes to dislike Bridesmaids and for the elderly to react negatively to The Wire.

      It’s interesting you can make tea without liking it!

  • http://pk-photography.blogspot.com/ Muhammad Quresh

    Are we old people allowed to love these?

  • http://www.facebook.com/bobby.marko.5 Bobby Marko

    I’ve had a blog on just this subject going for a few years now. Oddly the only overlap is “bacon”. http://stuffyouarenotallowedtonotlike.blogspot.com/

  • Chancellor Stupidface III

    I’m not a big fan of tea or bacon, I’ve never heard of The Wire or Bridesmaids, and I hate sexism and all modern music. How I have not been approached by people wielding pitchforks and torches is beyond me.

  • doodlebug

    wtf is portal???? i hate beyonce – not an ounce of talent, bridesmaids piss me off, i avoid nightclubs becuase of the awful pop music….and everything else, Harry Potter – totally overrated…it was crap, so were the books….the wire, saw it once…and never again. Tea, Chocolate and cats are fucking awesome….sexism – fact of life girls, live with it, unlucky…..it can be pretty fucking funny too. :V and bacon……mmmmmmmmmmm

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