Okay, so I missed a day. Technically I skipped Day 9 and it’s currently Day 11, but I’m doing Day 10. And unless the weekend is forgiving, Day 11 and 12 can bite me because it’s Mother’s Day weekend and I’m going to be away from technology for a while. So here we go.
Most Embarrassing Moment(s).
Good lord I could write a book. I don’t think there’s enough hard drive space on the entire internet for me to properly chronicle all of the awkward things I’ve done and experienced in my life. My friends would quickly tell you I’m a walking magnet for awkward situations. But for the sake of brevity (and your amusement at my expense), I’ll narrow it down to just a few.
This is one that still haunts me to this day, but it’s pretty tame so I figure it’s a good place to start. I must have been about 16 or 17 at the time because I hadn’t had my driver’s license for very long, but I remember I was still in high school. At that particular time my dad was crazy big into his Atkins diet and he loved eating all of the Atkins-branded products that flooded grocery stores back then. (I’m aware they’re still around, but this was back when the craze was in full swing.) One afternoon he gave me some money and asked me to run to the local grocery store in my hometown (which happened to be a Jitney Jungle) to buy up all of a certain kind of Atkins candy bar because they’d just stopped making them or something. Since driving was still NEW and EXCITING to me back then I was happy to take him up on that offer. So I go to the store, I scour it up and down, and finally I hit paydirt. I pretty much grabbed the entire box and went to the counter to check out. There was a girl slightly older than me running one of the registers and I thought she was pretty attractive so I figured I’d check out in her line. I was an incredibly shy, awkward teenager (hell I’m still a bit shy but I’ve warmed up a lot since then), so I couldn’t really think of anything to say to her aside from the usual chit chat. I just paid for my candy bars and left feeling slightly dejected and angry at myself for not speaking up when I had a chance, but I quickly forgot about it on the way home. So I get home, and my dad asked what all else they had. I mentioned another type of candy bar or snack or something I saw and he immediately gave me more money and asked me to go buy those too. I was a bit irritated but I figured hey, what the hell. It’s not like I had anything else to do that day, so I went back. I grabbed the SECOND box of stuff, and I proceeded back to the checkout. Once again, the cute girl’s line was a bit shorter than the others so I took it upon myself to try and say something to her this time. I waited patiently until it was finally my turn, and as I placed my items on the conveyor belt I gathered up all of the awkward courage I could muster and asked, “Don’t you hate it when you don’t get enough?”
There was silence for a moment. Then she slowly looked at me with a smirk and asked me what I’d just said. I repeated it again, innocently (in my mind) referencing the fact that I hadn’t bought enough candy bars on my first trip through her particular checkout line. “Don’t you hate it when you don’t get enough?”, I repeated again. She just chuckled and sort of turned red. She finished ringing me up and I went about my business, absolutely baffled why she thought it was so funny. I got in my truck and got about halfway home when suddenly it dawned on me. I felt like someone had dropped a stack of bricks on my chest I was so embarrassed. Thinking back, it really wasn’t so bad. But I never went into that grocery store again as long as it was in business (Jitney Jungle went out of business just a few years later). Sometimes I still wonder if she remembers that weird kid who seemed to want to discuss sexual habits in a grocery store checkout line. And then I turn blood red all over again.
This happened in high school as well. I can’t remember if it was my junior or senior year, but towards the end of my tenure there I was taking a Spanish class with some friends. Our teacher was really nice and fairly laid back, but at the same time I’d be lying if I said many of us learned a lot while we were enrolled in her classes. The bulk of our “tests” seemed to consist of memorizing eight or so Spanish vocabulary words and then writing them back down on a sheet of paper with their proper meanings and turning it in. It usually resulted in an easy A, and unless you just absolutely did not give a crap you had no excuse to not have an A average in that class. As a result, a lot of us used our class time to work on homework for other courses that we considered more important *cough*Calculus*cough*. So one day I’m sitting in there working on my Calculus homework in a panic, trying desperately to get it finished before next period started (I had a good reason for procrastinating on this assignment, but that’s another story for another day). Suddenly the teacher strolls in and announces a pop quiz. This actually pissed me off quite a bit because some friends and I had a theory that since she put relatively little effort into actually teaching us, she must have been using the pop quizzes as an excuse to get some of us to do poorly so our GPAs would look relatively believable instead of everyone having straight 100s. I mean don’t get me wrong, she was a nice lady, but her idea of teaching us was to pop in a VHS of Selena and then proceed to read a book for half an hour.
Understandably I was annoyed and felt like my time was being wasted. She stood up and appeared to leave the room, at which point my frustration boiled over and I just exclaimed “DAMMIT!!!” at nearly the top of my lungs. I thought I was in good company until I happened to look up and saw that the teacher was standing right there. Oh boy did I catch some heat for that one. I ended up having to apologize, but to this day I’m still more embarrassed that I was caught than I was for actually saying it.
The Grand Finale
I’ve debated whether I should tell this one. So far this is probably one of the most embarrassing moments (if not the most embarrassing) of my life, and until now only myself and a couple of other people have known of it. I never speak of it, for obvious reasons. But…I think it’s time I shared this horror with the world.
The year was 2007. Those of you who know me well remember that I went to California that summer. She and I are still great friends, but at the time I was in a three year relationship with a girl I was crazy about. It was long distance, and I had flown across the country to stay with her for a week and hit up San Francisco and lots of other awesome NorCal experiences…. Except for this one.
One afternoon she and I were sitting alone in her bedroom watching The Office on my laptop and fooling around when my body decided it needed to make itself known. I nonchalantly excused myself to the restroom and took care of some business really quick. At this point in the story I feel I should mention that California tends to have water shortages, and this particular girl’s house drew its water from a well instead of a typical water setup. I’m not exactly sure why, but the toilets in that house had all of the suction power of an elderly man trying to suck a golfball through a curly straw. I’m amazed even water went down. Unfortunately I did not know this prior to my encounter with said toilet. I had barely even done anything, but flushing that thing instantly proved to be an exercise in futility. I tried about two or three times to no avail, and at this point the water level had risen to a point that a fourth try would certainly end in disaster. I looked around desperately for a plunger, but unfortunately I was staying at the only freaking house in the world that didn’t have one handy.
I debated for a while what I should do. I toyed with the idea of reaching in, but the thought of it made my blood curdle. I looked around for any object I could use to remove the “obstruction” but the sad fact of the matter was that there was really nothing I could do. I considered just walking out and ignoring it, but I knew I’d be caught anyway so that wasn’t an option. I just ended up having to swallow my pride and walk back into my girlfriend’s bedroom to explain the situation.
“You’re kidding, right?”
No. I wasn’t.
I sheepishly followed her into the living room where her parents were watching tv and I uncomfortably explained the situation to them. Her dad just laughed and headed back to try and help, but in retrospect I really wish he hadn’t. His big idea for fixing my predicament was to pour hot water into the toilet. That’s it. Just hot water. Knowing how full the bowl already was, I knew it was an insane idea but he insisted on it anyway. He flushed and things quickly descended into the seventh layer of hell. It’s kind of a blur, but all I remember is frantically grabbing things off of their bathroom floor to try and protect them from the water. I grabbed a bath mat, an electric scale, and maybe a magazine rack. I honestly can’t remember. But the water started coming faster and faster and there was no end in sight.
Each towel that hit the bathroom floor to contain this disaster was probably as full of my shame as it was water. Eventually the tide was slowed but we still lacked a plunger. My girlfriend’s brother agreed to pick one up on his way home from work (yes, the ENTIRE FAMILY knew of it at this point) and in the meantime her dad went into the shed and got a freaking ShopVac to start emptying the water with. So there I was. I’d started the day in the arms of a girl I loved, and I was ending it in disgrace by dumping out the contents of a waterlogged ShopVac along their fenceline.
It all ended well enough, and to this day we still laugh about it. But until now I’ve never shared this secret with anyone but her and her family. So feel privileged, internets. You’ve now been introduced to one of the more humiliating skeletons in my closet. But if you know me at all, you know this story is only the tip of the iceberg.
I could talk about the very attractive nurse who took my stitches out after my surgery and the uncomfortable things that happened during. I could talk about that time a porn ad with sound popped up on my laptop in the middle of a crowded study hall. I could talk about that time I accidentally smacked one of my manager’s boobs at the office. Or the time I drove a golfcart into a house. Or the time I fell off a roof.
I could go on forever. But the truth is, we all have embarrassing moments. Some of us just have a few more than others. But hey, if I’ve made at least one of you laugh today, then it’s all worth it in my eyes. Embarrassment is the spice of life!
…But if you hold any of this against me, I will come to your house and kick you in the face.