Sometimes confrontation is overrated. Here, people share the most passive aggressive thing they’ve ever done to someone.
On an airplane flight this past summer, the guy in front of me reclined his seat until he was practically resting his head on my chest. I politely asked him if he would please put his seat up. He just looked at me and said, “No.”
I then turned my air vent on full blast and aimed it right at his face. When he reached up to adjust it, I pushed his hand away, “Excuse me. That’s my air vent. I like it that way.”
He ended up leaning forward the entire flight, but left his seat back reclined practically to my chest. We were both uncomfortable the entire flight, but neither of us would give in. As my wife put it, “So, this is what happens when an inconsiderate jerk meets a passive-aggressive idiot.”
2. ‘Like a High-Pitched Chihuahua’
This last fourth of July some friends and I went down to the pier to watch the fire works. We were sitting down when this couple decided the perfect spot for them was standing directly in front of us.
I had been drinking a bit so it seemed like a good idea to bark like a dog. Not like a mean mean dog but more like a high pitched chihuahua (I do a really good impression by the way). They kept turning around looking for the dog until they realized it was me. I looked them in the eyes and started barking with an even higher pitch.
I think they thought I was crazy because they just whispered to each other and left. The old man sitting next to me gave me a high five.
3. The earphone fairy, that’s how.
One time my sister stole a pair of my headphones and lost them, so I got back at her by tying her earbuds in knots every chance I get.
Every time she went to use her earbuds they’d be knotted. She’d yell, “HOW DOES THIS ALWAYS HAPPEN!?” But little did she know what I had done. There was no greater revenge.
4. So long!
In college I had the worst roommate. She would stay up all night, sleep all day long, and dramatically sigh or groan if I accidentally woke her up by, you know, being in my room during the day. She also could not shut up for five minutes at a time. She literally wandered around our room muttering to herself, and if she wasn’t doing that, she was sighing and groaning and slamming drawers shut. She also left food that should have been refrigerated out on her desk for weeks at a time, including STACKS of burgers still in their paper wrapping. It smelled. ANYWAY.
She mentioned once how she hated living in the dorms because she couldn’t smoke in there. I casually brought up how my last roommate broke her contract and moved into a house mid-semester and she just loved it. New roommate got excited and started to look into getting an apartment. What I didn’t mention was that it cost $1000 plus that month’s dorm fee to break said contract. And apparently, she managed to sign up for this without noticing that fine print, either, because for about a week after she had screaming matches on the phone with her mom about the money.
A week later, she was gone, and I had the room to myself for the rest of the semester. It was great. I would feel bad, but living with a burger hoarder was too much for me.
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5. Subliminal messaging.
There’s these two girls who sit behind me in one of my classes that don’t shut up. No matter what my professor says, they always have to talk about it between the two of them. After doing this, it always leads into a longer discussion between them. It’s fucking annoying because I’m actually interested in what my professor has to say. (he tells some pretty interesting stories)
One day, I had enough of it. When they started talking again, I took my laptop out and made a new Word document. I made the font large enough to where they would be able to read it, and typed four simple words:
SHUT THE &*%$ UP
I cleared my throat (very loudly, I should add) and just slightly moved out of the way to where they would be able to read it.
That was two weeks ago and they haven’t said a word in class since.
6. You can only ignore something for so long.
I live on a typical American suburb street. My neighbor just got a new job with a company provided vehicle. He has a one lane driveway so he parks this huge work van in the road, directly in front of my house. It is all I can see when I look out the front window. I casually mention it to him how he could park in front of his house and not mine. He just chuckles to himself and starts talking about something else.
For the next week I parked my car in front of his house to see if he enjoyed looking at my car everyday. Luckily he got the message and now parks in front of his home and not mine.
7. A hairy situation.
Whenever my roommate shaves, he always leave little bits of hair in and around the sink. As other people’s hair has always made me cringe, I repeatedly asked him to stop… but there would always be hair in the sink.
So, I waited. For three months I grew my pubic hair to the most glorious length it has ever been and shaved it all off into the sink and left it. I haven’t had any problems with my bathroom since then.
8. Sorry not sorry.
I hate anyone who drives an SUV/truck with those bright-as-thirty-suns headlights. They are the most obnoxious goddamn thing in the world.
I was driving home one day from class when this guy came behind me, his headlights destroying my eyes. I was so mad. Not only did he have the obnoxious lights, but he was tailgating me hardcore. Now, I’m doing 15 over the speed limit and I’m not in the fast lane. He could pass me. But no. He just continues to tailgate me. There wasn’t even another soul on the highway.
Now, this is in New Jersey – on highways the state police don’t just sit in their cars and keep their radar guns on. They only turn them on when they think they see someone speeding, so that radar detectors can’t spot them from miles away.
Well, I spot one sitting in the grassy middle part of the highway, facing my direction. So I proceed to turn on my signal, go in the fast lane…
I get on my brakes hard. He slingshots past me and gives me this perplexed look. All of a sudden my radar detector goes crazy. The cop pulls out and pulls over the jerk
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9. WAKE UP.
The neighbor in my girlfriend’s apartment will let their alarm go off for a good 5 minutes before they even try to stop it. They don’t hit snooze like a normal person. They just lay there and let it buzz over and over and over again.
It was going on longer than usual so I ended up pulling out my phone and turning on the “meltdown” alarm and basically pressing it directly into the wall. On top of the horrendously loud noise, it was also buzzing the whole wall.
They turned their alarm off within 10 seconds and haven’t done it since.
10. Good try there.
I was on the receiving end of some epic passive aggression once.
I was in the “12 items or less” line at the grocery store, and as usual, had counted my items before I got in the line. An older couple got in line behind me, and clearly did not think I had done so. They spoke loudly to each other, I guess hoping to embarrass me – “THAT DOESN’T LOOK LIKE TWELVE ITEMS TO YOU, DOES IT, MARGE?” etc. this continued on, and when it was my turn, one started “LET’S COUNT. ONE… TWO… THREE…” I started wondering if maybe I miscounted, feeling a little panicky as I usually try not to be a douchebag. Then finally, “… TEN. Oh.”
The cashier laughed. I needed to do nothing; the backfiring of their plan was plenty.
11. We don’t have all day here.
Someone at Starbucks ordering for what must have been 10 people and trying to do it from memory and notes they’d taken on their phone. I literally pulled up a chair into the line behind them and sat down with an accompanying annoyed sigh. Really pissed them off but they then got out of line and went back through after they figured out what they were forgetting.
12. Cool story, bro. Can you tell it again?
I have a friend who talks about his gap year in Peru every chance possible, now when he starts up with another Peru story I put on my most amazed look and say, ‘I never knew you went to Peru!’
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13. Taste of his own medicine.
My second job was in a cube farm in the IT department of a large telecom company. One of the guys used to check his voicemail with his speakerphone, with the volume set just slightly below maximum.
My solution? I made eye contact with my co workers, and one by one, we all dialled into our voicemail boxes, on speakerphone, with the volume set to maximum. In under a minute, the air was filled with robotic recorded prompts for passwords and airing voicemails for all to hear.
Dude got the message.
14. It’s all about the eye contact.
If someone is really annoying me with what they are saying/chewing loudly/smacking gum loudly/making annoying drum noises with their mouth, I will sometimes turn music on and slowly turn it up to the point where I can’t hear them over it. Sometimes I will even look them dead in the eyes while I do it.
15. If you can’t tell them, show them.
I just hit the passive-aggressive zenith – played a Youtube video of someone eating crisps loudly while someone else ate crisps loudly because I can’t be bothered to ask them to stop.
16. How inconsiderate.
Freshman year of university, randomly assigned roommate.
I had a lymph node infection (I thought it was just a bad hangover!) and was bed-ridden for four days. Visibly very sick. The jerk decides THOSE FOUR DAYS are the days to get COD from a thrift store and invite his friends to our room to play from midnight to four. He’d always sleep from 5am – 1pm.
Second day of him giving me the ol’ spicy COD-chain, I would blast opera from my speakers from 6:00am – Noon. Then I’d allow him around 10 minutes of snoozle-time, and start it AGAIN.
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17. Well played.
It’s not much…
But I don’t have the energy to fight with people who post about their strong moral/political beliefs on Facebook. What I do have is money and the ability to donate to Planned Parenthood in their names every time they post something that I disagree with.
It’s the most passive aggressive thing I do.
I was pretty young (maybe 13ish?) my younger brother (11ish) kept frustrating me by stealing my CD player and I was out for clever revenge. We had a CD recorded by a band from the local church called ‘flying sheep’ (something something Jesus and flying animals, you know the drill). The first track on the CD was about 45 seconds of sheep noises.
When he went to sleep, I snuck into his room quietly located my CD player, set it to loop track one and turned the volume way down. About every 5 minutes I’d sneak in again and turn the volume up a little more. I did this for about 2 hours until there was nothing but bleating sheep at full volume about 4 feet from his head. My brother slept like a log so he slept for a whole 7 more hours with sheep noises beamed directly into his brain.
He woke up pretty angry. Apparently he had dreamt about trying to herd aggressive sheep all night long.
19. Make it rain.
Whenever some jerk is tailgating me on the road I hit the windshield cleaner button and just hold it. Usually I can get a good consistent spray of water to obstruct their view. They usually change lanes after that. Bonus points for me if their windshield is dirty and their wipers are bad leaving behind a dirty muddy mess. Also if you are all-in on this idea, you can take a pin and adjust the angle of one of your nozzles to spray directly over your car for maximum effectiveness.
20. It was for her own survival.
I used to be a resident advisor in a college dorm. One of the dorm activities was on personal hygiene, with free stuff available like deodorant, shampoo, razors, etc.
One of my residents couldn’t be bothered to speak with his roommate about his disgusting habits, but he sure took about a dozen of those fliers and put them up all over his roommates side of the room.
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21. How does it feel?
On the (LIRR) Long Island Rail Road a few months ago, I wind up sitting next to two idiots who were talking LOUDLY on their cells. A few people did the “shhh” sound, to no effect. I generally don’t mind so long as the conversation is kept brief. But noooooo, one douchebag stayed on from leaving the tunnel out of Penn Station all the way through to Jamaica. The other actually made another call to someone after finishing her first conversation.
I had enough, and from the looks of the other riders, they were fuming as well. So I pulled my own cell, and pretended to have a conversation of my own. Only I spoke SO loudly, that they couldn’t continue with their own conversations. Better still, my “conversation” basically consisted of me saying, “Hey, John!!! Say, don’t you hate when people don’t show respect to their fellow commuters on the train?!?! Isn’t it the worst when you have to deal with people who make your commute suck because they’re inconsiderate and selfish, and refuse to behave with common courtesy!?!?!?!” Stuff like that.
It was even better, because they were sitting facing me (most seats face the same way, but the LIRR also has some seats that face one another), so I was able to look them right in the face while “talking” to my friend.
Sure enough, it forced them off their calls (I got called a few names as well), but the other commuters were laughing their butts off. Either way, it worked.
My old roommate’s friend used to always come over and drink my cans of Pepsi. liked to treat myself with said cans, so you can imagine how upset this made me. One day I hid all the cans but one, which I coated with nail biter. The second he realized something was wrong, he poured himself a glass of water using the only glass on the drying rack… the glass coated in nail biter.
I was on a road trip with my grandparents, and we were sharing a hotel room. My grandfather has a really intense snore, and I couldn’t take it anymore. So I leaned forward and clapped as loud as I could and pretended to be asleep. He immediately shot out of bed and walked around the room to investigate, leaving me just enough time to fall asleep before the snoring returned.
I put 3 staples in my stapler at a time so people will stop using the one on my desk. There is an empty desk right next to me with a fully loaded stapler no one ever uses.
25. Two Can Play
Watching my daughter at gymnastics, woman next to me smacking her gum like a cow. I pulled out a pen and sat there clicking the button until she got fed up and left.
If someone’s rude to me I cover their seat in water (all over so there are no marks/pools to spot) and watch as the realization slowly sets in.
27. Sweet Revenge
The residents at the pool I work at complain about everything, making the shifts that my coworkers and I work extremely trying on our patience- it eventually got to the point where a number of residents petitioned to get one of the guards written up because she was sucking a lollipop in an “inappropriate manner” while on stand. As head guard of the facility, all of these complaints went to me. Eventually I got sick of this, and took action. What the residents didn’t realize up until about halfway through the summer is that the pool they use has a number of small rules that no one really acknowledges, because honestly its not worth anyone’s time to enforce them. These rules include things such as enforcing designated areas to eat and a sort of blanket ban on alcohol. From July 25th on, under my authority, every guard was required to reprimand all residents on every single infraction, in order to give them a taste of their own medicine. I can honestly say that there is nothing more satisfying than having one of my guards stop a hated resident from enjoying a few drinks with whoever they’re with, and then looking them right in the eye and just absorbing their hated. Its…..sublime.
28. No Flash
I was at the Aquarium of the Pacific where they have a cool projection on a sphere. While they were in the middle of their presentation this one lady kept taking pics of the projection with a flash. So in this dark room filled with people, every minute our so, she would take a flash photo. I eventually took a flash photo of her. She glared at me with some evil eyes, but she stopped with the flash photography. My family and I enjoyed the rest of the presentation.
I was in Walmart once and this kid was screaming. I tried to ignore it. I thought about asking the parent to quiet the kid down (you could hear him through the whole store). Finally I just stood at the end of the aisle they were on and started screaming back at him. The mother was horrified, but after about ten seconds of yelling back and forth the kid finally stopped.
30. The Move
When someone is not passing traffic, and camping in the passing lane, I wait for a spot to pass them. When they’re right behind me, I slow down till they switch lanes to pass me, and then resume my previous speed.