Make the Free Transform tool respect the pattern-transformation hotkey.
With every other transformation tool in Illustrator, you can hold down the `/~ key to affect just the pattern applied to the shape - the Rotate, Scale, and Shear tools, dragging it around with one of the Selection arrows, bumping it around with the arrow keys.
But not with the Free Transform tool. The Free Transform tool doesn't know about this switch that every other tool has. Probably because it was implemented long after the others, and nobody involved in it knew about this behavior.
Today I got to explain this to yet another a new user who wanted to be able to transform patterns, and I'm really tired of telling them about this exception. Can we please get "hold the backtick key while using the Free Transform tool to transform an object's pattern" put into the queue?
I feel your pain.
Margaret Trauth commented
As a subsidiary request: I know that international users can have problems with this because they don't *have* this key on their keyboard. And they can't change it, because it doesn't show up in the Keyboard prefs. Having that changeable, whether in the Keyboard prefs, or SOMEwhere, would be icing on the cake.