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I must admit my patience and understanding is not at the highest levels lately. It was certainly on full display this week when a person in front of me pulled halfway into the turning lane in front of me. They blocked the lane I was in so I had to stop and wait until they turned before I could continue straight.

This seems to happen a lot and I really do not understand why. The turning lanes are quite long and these people have ample opportunity to get fully into the lane and not block traffic in the next lane over.

What is these people's problem? I personally think they are in need of attention. I believe they want to be the center of the universe and by taking up your lane and your time it certainly causes you to give them your undivided attention. There is no getting around the fact that you are definitely thinking about them the entire time they have your trapped in traffic.

How can you avoid coming into contact with these folks? I have come up with some early warning signs that will let you easily identify the attention seekers who will ultimately attempt to ensnarl you in their traffic wake.

The first sign you are near an attention grabber is if they park their vehicle too close to the lines in the parking lot. We have all found a great spot in the parking lot and as we speed to it we are quick disillusioned to find the vehicle in the space next to it has parked on or over the line making in close to impossible to squeeze into the spot. You risk a strained back and certain vehicle paint damage if you try to squeeze out of your car next to these rogues of recognition.

Another signal that you are dealing with a person with a "look at me" attitude is they take over the entire armrest in the movie theater. We have all been there as we nestle into our seat and attempt to get comfortable only to find that the armrest in being completely monopolized by the person next to us. As we try to jostle for a little of the cushioned real estate we are thwarted at every turn by these armchair Attila the Huns. These folks create a movie house Maginot Line that is completely impenetrable. Perhaps a bucket of popcorn dumped onto their head would satisfy their attention cravings enough for them to share a bit of the cup holder comfort.

The final indication that you are in the presence of one of these "Notice Me Nymphos" is they are suddenly struck with a strong desire to read the entire fast food menu while you are waiting behind them in line. Even though they have been in line for five minutes once, they reach the register they must put everything on pause while they peruse all of the offerings.

Some are so attention-hungry that they feel the need to ask questions of the clerk. Stuff like, "Does that come with onions?" and "Are the fries fresh?"

Give me a break people! McDonald's has had the same menu for 65 years. I am sure this is not the first time they have been to the restaurant. Why now do you they feel the need to inquire about the sodium content of the fish sandwich?

The next time you come across one of these attention-seeking annoyances just remember they probably cannot help themselves. In some instances, they may not even realize what they are doing. Things could always be worse.

Imagine what a mess we would be in if they needed attention so badly that they wrote down their pet peeves in a column and published them for people to read. Then you would know you were dealing with a real sicko.

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