On multiple occasions during the day, I find myself saying either out loud or to quietly to myself that “I can’t believe that.” 

The phrase pops up and is used indiscriminately to describe either something I just read or witnessed that seemed so strange given the circumstance of the moment. I wonder if others have that same reaction to a variety of situations that occur. 

I’ve caught myself saying it when someone makes a stupid driving move ahead of me, when a staple in a grocery store is out of stock, when I’ve again misplaced something, a spectacular play at a sporting event, a long-shot coming in first, or leaders of the country silent in the face of too many issues that divide and separate the nation.

So, I decided to pay closer attention to some of the times I used the phrase “I can’t believe that” and find out exactly how often and under what circumstance I tossed out that phrase with cavalier abandon. A few examples:

• I opened a popular news site online and found the lead story was something to do with one of the Kardashians. I still can’t believe this group makes any news.

• Scanning the news again, there was a story about the dilemma people faced with having to choose between watching one of the political debates or “The Bachelorette.” I still can’t believe most people don’t use their DVRs, or still watch reality shows.

• With the recent 50th anniversary of the moon landing, some media outlets continue to give a platform to the conspiracy theorists who claim it was a hoax. I still can’t believe some need to hold on to a belief that can so easily be disproved.

• I had routine maintenance performed on my vehicle, and then three major problems occurred immediately after the maintenance. I still can’t believe my extended warranty ended 10 days before these major issues appeared. But, of course I can.

• While driving to town to run a couple of errands, a car was stopped in the middle of the road. Thinking there may be a critter I couldn’t see, or a stalled vehicle I waited a couple of minutes. Then, trying to move around the stationary vehicle, I can see the person just looking around. As I passed, the vehicle started moving. I still can’t believe some people have a driver’s license.

• I discovered two birthday cards and one payment I mailed never reached the intended recipients. I still can’t believe we are still having such ongoing mail delivery issues now that didn’t seem so prevalent in relatively recent history.

• We still have no solution to the separating and caging of children and families at the border. I still can’t believe that Amazon can know I searched for a book and that pops up on every aspect of my device within minutes and we still can’t figure out how to make sure young children are safe, fed and not prisoners in this great country.

• People continue being killed in mass shootings. I still can’t believe people don’t see the connection between words and actions.

I just can’t believe that.

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