Speaking of things in fiction that bother me, here's another: characters who are not adventurous enough, but through the story learn to be more adventurous. A classic example is The Hobbit. But other examples that come to mind are Anansi Boys, which put me off from Neil Gaiman entirely, and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, which I know I wouldn't like based on the previews.
Like my previous complaint, it comes down to the limitations of fiction as a medium. We like stories about the interesting or unusual. So in a story, adventurous often means going on this dangerous adventure to kill the dragon. We also like stories where the hero wins. So of course they defeat the dragon every time despite the one in a million odds. Doesn't that just show the virtue of being a risk-taker?
Even in a more realistic story where there are no dragons, it's all about living life to the fullest, according to whatever writers think that means. Inevitably it's something that's fun to read about but doesn't sound like fun to actually experience. More exploiting the limitations of fiction as a medium.
Maybe it just annoys me on a personal level, as I've met innumerable people who discover that I'm not into one thing or another, and think it's such a travesty that I should try it over and over until I like it. Geeks are especially bad about this, with all their shows and movies that they think I should watch. I like to enthuse about webcomics and blogs, but I don't operate under the illusion that everyone else would like them too if only they'd try.
In discussion with my boyfriend, he said this didn't really bother him. Instead, he's bothered by a different kind of character development, wherein a member of the upper middle class discovers that money can't give their life meaning. Specific examples include The Great Gatsby and American Beauty. I think he has trouble sympathizing for those poor poor wealthy people. I think that doesn't bother me as much though.