One little thing that has been getting on my nerves since I returned to the US is the American way of telling time. Meaning this whole AM/PM business.
In most European countries (indeed, in most countries in the world), the 24-hour clock is used. This shockingly logical system divides the day into, uh, 24 hours and runs from midnight to midnight, indicating how many hours have passed since midnight. So, 8:30 “AM” is 08:30, 12 “PM” (noon) is 12:00, 2:15 “PM” is 14:15, 8 “PM” is 20:00, and at 12 “AM” (midnight) the clock goes back to 00:00.
This is what Americans would refer to as “military time.” Well, maybe the military wisely uses it because it makes sense and avoids confusion? The 12-hour clock, on the other hand, is ambiguous, cumbersome, and downright annoying. My biggest pet peeve is trying to check train times online and getting the wrong results because I have failed to select “PM” from the drop-down menu.
It seems the US likes to stubbornly persist in using systems that are out of sync with the rest of the world, like the imperial system. Great if those systems are vastly superior. But they’re not. They’re just a pain in the butt.