Solving the Big Issues: The PCL

Alternate title: Ways in which I am cray cray crazy, quick make me feel better by sharing, go on!

You know that slight feeling of “hmmm. I better rectify this. And soon”. It’s a tinge of something. Not panic, certainly not, but it’s discomfort, it’s a niggle, and it’s something you can usually fix, it’s within your control. I like to call it: the personal comfort level or the PCL as others may know it as.

Confused? Don’t be. Let me explain.

Exhibit A
I need my volume level on my remote to be on level 85. If it’s going to be on anything other than 85, it should be on an odd number. IT JUST SHOULD BE because that’s what right. We have two volumes at play – the Austar (cable) and the TV. The TV needs to be set at 85 and we can work around the levels on the other remote. If I get to the the TV and the base levels are low and the cable at max, I get the niggle. And of course I fix it IMMEDIATELY.

Exhibit B
If per chance I take something out of the microwave and it’s not finished the allotted time you bet I go clearing out that number from the display. If I get there, and there is a stray 2 or 3 seconds just sitting there, not fulfilling their destiny, you bet I am clearing it. Just as fast as I can.

Exhibit C
My inbox has always been a thing I like to take control over. A control freak? Why yes, yes I am! If I see an inbox (not looking in your direction at all Rob) with THOUSANDS of emails most of which are (DEAR GOD) unanswered and unread, well you can bet that my comfort levels reach fever pitch. Inboxes are for actioning and at the most I will have 20 odd sitting in there that need my actioning. Some times I even get that little line – “wow! Your inbox is really clean”. OF COURSE IT IS. IT’S MY INBOX.

Exhibit D
When I see that battery level on my mobile get below 20% I get itchy. 10% and I’m in a mild panic. Those noises? Just before it dies? I just have to turn it off if I am away from a battery source. I feel like I’m letting my phone down. Poor battery. I’ll try better next time.

So what about you? What gets you all titchy? I KNOW I am not alone.


  1. I’m so glad I’m not the only looney when it comes to volume control. My levels have to be on EVEN numbers – ONLY. Crazy I know.

  2. All of the above. Plus, any cupboard door left open, heaven forbid someone gets up from the dinner table to quickly grab something and leaves a cupboard door ajar – have to close it. Oh, and uneven tea towels hanging on the oven door… I’m stopping now. Just one more, those freaking spam blog comments that pop into my lovely clean inbox. Okay, I’m done now. *hangs head in PCL shame*

  3. Holy crap, mine is all of those things and then some!

    1. Magazines that are sent to me are mine. They cannot be opened or read by anyone else first. If I catch them, there are indignant cries of “Dear Lord, you cracked the cover, didn’t you?”. Happy to share after the fact, but first dibs is MINE.

    2. When we did our kitchen renovation I wanted open counter spaces so that we wouldn’t keep clutter. I had to compromise and we have one section that is raised. My husband dumps all his stuff there every night. I sometimes lose it about that. “There should be nothing on the bench. Put in in the cupboard in your freaking cane container.” I might sometimes refer to it as a pigeon hole. Loser. The End.

  4. 5,876 unread emails.
    can we still be friends?

  5. I also share those feelings, though on different things. Toilet roll hanging with paper facing the wall sends my head in a spin. Once I decorate a room nothing can be moved and I will spot a moved item with seconds of entering a room.

  6. where do I start?

    anything messy or a bit squalor-like makes me edgy.

    Lost things bother me (thought I’d lost my rolex today, that was a tense 10 minutes)

    I do not believe that benches are storage facilities either.

    I won’t even allow a kettle on mine.

  7. I can totally relate. For me it’s hanging toilet paper so it rolls off facing the wall not out. Drives me mad!

  8. You are definitely not alone. Birds of a feather! I do all of those things too and always, always have to close the cupboard and drawer doors that my husband seems to think is acceptable to leave slightly ajar. Of course I have to sigh loudly while closing them!

  9. I am so with you on ALL that! My tv volume has to be in increments of 5. And I loathe empty dishes on the sink when there is space in the dishwasher (it’s not hard people!). And my all time – I HATE (yes, hate) and unwiped bench. I cannot leave crumbs on a bench to come back to.
    Bring on the cray cray!!

  10. I’m a librarian so I delight in order and control. The dishwasher must be stacked a certain way, there’s a specific spot for everything, big plates, little plates, bowls, regular glasses, coffee cups, wine glasses. That’s normal right?

  11. Bathroom doors must be closed at night.
    When hanging clothes on the line all shirts must go together, shorts together ect ect
    Toilet paper must face OUT.
    I too get twitchy when phone battery hits 20%. 10% & I am in a panic.
    I cannot let a phone go unanswered. Tim let’s his ring all the time without even checking who it is!
    I can’t leave the house without a bottle of water.

    Totally normal behavior yes?!

  12. If the toilet paper is on the holder with the flap to the back.. nuff said.

  13. Totally agree! I also have to sort the wash and empty the basket every day, turn off the switches I can see on that aren’t being used (lights, kettle etc)…I think they are all normal behaviours, anyone who doesn’t do these things are the odd ones ๐Ÿ˜‰

  14. Ummm … I am definitely thinking we were separated at birth. All of the above for me and your description of Rob’s inbox just gave me an anxiety attack!

  15. Oh what a crack up! Can I just verify as someone who does not watch a lot of TV 85 sounds terribly high??? Mine is often set at…17?? Anywhoo I digress…yes PCL…I have them
    :: the kettle must finish the boil on it’s own (no flicking it off when you think it’s done!)
    :: knickers must be folded in three’s
    :: Lucas Paw Paw cream must always be in my reach (or I will go itchy, twitchy, lip licking mad!)
    :: When hanging out washing…knickers go in the inside and outer garments on the outside so if THE QUEEN should visit she doesn’t have to see my knickers on the line.
    :: when making the bed…the fitting sheet, must be pulled taught…OR I WILL REDO IT!!!
    ahhhh… enough said

    • I agree. The volume IS high. It’s a strange thing. When we watch TV without the cable part, it’s happy to sit on 17 and yet with the cable on, it’s 85. TACKLING THE BIG STUFF here. As ever.

  16. When I buy newspapers or magazines sort through the pile to get the newest crispest one with no creases. And nobody is touching it before I’ve read it. I don’t do clutter and I don’t like stuff lying around. I don’t own any ornaments. None. So the kids toys drive me a little bit crazy. The boys are into Lego at the moment. Lego. Those little suckers are everywhere no matter what rules I’ve laid down.

  17. So glad there are so many normal people out here.
    I think OCD was termed by some really lazy, messy, non colour coded people to make THEM feel more comfortable about their lack of environmental control.
    Everything here rings true and then some.

  18. Couches and cushions in the lounge need to be straitened or I can’t sleep. I can’t get into an unmade bed, makes me feel uncomfortable just typing it. My floors have to be clean at all times, I constantly have a broom in my hand.

    But the email thing I am weird with. My work email is super tidy but my personal has over 10,000 not sorted & I do not really care. Odd.

  19. I would here by like to invite you all to an inaugrual meeting of OCD & Twitchy PCL’s at my house. I live in chaos with four children & a husband who will leave shiz wherever they see fit. Oh please, please, please say you’ll come?!! Nice weather in Brisbane at the moment!!

  20. Sarah Owen-Green says

    Alarm clock must always be set with a “6” in it i.e. 5:06 or 5:36. If hubby sets it, I must double check it. Can’t go to sleep knowing the alarm will go off without a “6”. Totes cray!

  21. Petrol in the car. My husband plays a game similar to the game of chicken where he sees how long he can go before filling up. The little indicator in the car that tells me how many kilometres of petrol there are till it’s completely empty? I like to fill before it hits 30km left. Or preferably when the tank is quarter full. I’m NEVER running out. Hubby? When it’s saying ZERO kms left in the tank, he’ll be like “oh there’s still 5 litres in the tank! no need to fill up yet!!!” WHAT?? Crazy.

  22. Ahh this made me smile so much. I can relate to the volume issue, except I need it to be an interval of 5 (i.e. 5, 10, 15 etc). I really have a battle with my husband over this as he changes it to 9 or 11 just to see if I notice. I do. I fix it.

    I work in a huge corporate building, 3 microwaves in each kitchenette, if I’m heating my lunch, I’m clearing all those unfulfilled seconds on all 3 microwaves.

    If I pass someone’s screen and see a sea of red unread emails, I count to 10 in my head and walk away…quickly…

    Oh & I agree with Tracy, I think I’m normal, everyone else who doesn’t have issues with the aforementioned are the crazy ones :o)

  23. Chairs not pushed in. Ick.

    • Traci Sparkle Devlin says

      Me too! Who parented these people that leave their chairs out when they walk away from the table? My work colleagues are the worst suspects.

  24. my inbox, both personal and work… ZERO AT ALL TIMES. I cannot have ANY mail in the inbox. Read and move to trash or another folder if I have to keep it.

    I am the same with the microwave. Cannot stand having time on it and nothing inside. stupid!

    That’s about it… my other OCD type tendencies are suppressed by my overwhelming laziness.

  25. Yikes Beth, thanks for reminding me to charge my phone ๐Ÿ™‚ I thought I was a control freak but I got nothing on some of your readers. 64 pages of emails in my hotmail inbox. Drives my hubby crazy. I leave glasses of water all over the house, there’s always stuff on the dining table, my computer desk looks like a bomb, but the toilet paper is always always always hanging the right way – over! And the tv volume is always above 50. I can’t be too pedantic about too much else as my maid never does things the way I would do it – makes me feel a little tense just thinking about it …

  26. All this and more…My TV volume has to be 7 or 5… No exceptions. Gas tank gets filled when it reaches half a tank…And my grocery cart is filled in a neat and orderly fashion and then placed on the check out belt neatly as well.. And everything is bought in multiples of 2. I straighten store displays as well.

  27. Reading all these comments make me feel like an anarchist!

  28. Visible cords. Problem being I have a tiny house, not many power outlets and a husband who could not care less…in fact I think he would decorate with power cords if I let him. It’s a wonder I still get out of bed in the morning. It’s very difficult.

  29. ahh, what a relief, i am amongst fellow cray crays…

    Drawers, cupboards – closed. Knickers ALWAYS hidden from view on the washing line. Bench tops clear. No random shoes laying around in the public areas of the house. Must always close the bathroom door before going to bed each night. Must always say “see you and be good” to my cats as I leave for work. Less than 5 unread emails in the in box. Toilet roll must be facing out. No leftover numbers on the microwave. Cushions straight. I will stop now… Thanks for the purge ๐Ÿ™‚

  30. The TV volume at my place is always 30. Hubs doesn’t understand when I go mental if it’s on 29, 31 etc…

    Except when watching DVD’s, then it’s on 20.

    My polix stools under the kitchen bench have to be lined up with the joinery underneath. And must be pushed in all the way, all the time.

    I agree with others above, I always pick a fresh paper from the middle of the pile, fresh magazine from the back of the rack, blinds all need to be rolled up to the exact same level, cushions sorted a certain way… I could go on…

    And this is the clincher, I only carry gold coins in my wallet. Who has space for all those 10c and 20c pieces?! Bwahahah

  31. I think it would take a small novel to list all of the things that have to be done in a certain way. From underwear must be matching, to jar/can labels must face forward in their designated spot, to washing hung a certain way, but the thing that really gets me is shoes left out laying around. How hard is it to PUT THEM AWAY???!!

  32. Ha! So many. The cushions “wrong” on the bed or couch. The empty fuel tank warning light in the car. The wardrobe doors or drawers left open. The kitchen cloth left wet and manky in the sink instead of drying over the tap. Toys left in the bath instead of neatly in the basket. Non-library books kept in the library book basket. Shoes being worn on my nice clean floor. Clean washing not put away. *Sigh* That feels better.

  33. I feel so warm and normal right now. No one (NO ONE) in my house gets any of these things! Freak they call me. But I knew, I just bloody well knew that I wasn’t the only one. Thank you Beth and friends, I’m just going to straighten a piece of paper on my desk. As normal people do…

  34. hanging washing on the line. I must use matching pegs for each item. I have tried to go wild and just mix it up . can. not. be. done.

  35. For me, odd number and children just doesnt work. So we now have 4 kiddies. If we had had twins this last pregnancy, I’m not sure what I would have done. TV volume has to be on 35. Toilet seats cannot be left up. Toilet paper unravels from over the top and in front. Kitchen cupboards that are left opne get slammed shut as a reminder to the one who left it open.
    So glad I’m not the only one has that has my little foibles.

  36. Plastic containers with a lip around it where soap suds congregate… And lids. Have to run a corner of a tea towel around it to get them out. Even if hubs is kind enough to wipe up, I always check the plastic stuff & re-do. AL

  37. Every time I turn on the tv I have to spend five minutes fixing the volume again! The other humans in this house have NO IDEA how to do it right!!


  1. […] Iโ€™m very uncomfortable. All PCLโ€™s (personal comfort levels) which I have written about before here are breached and I will be known to make special trips into town to ensure itโ€™s never for too […]

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