Monday, October 4, 2010

I Could Have Died on the Spot!

Join me, if you will, in a little game I like to call, "How Freaking Embarrassing Was That?" also known as "Oh My God, I Could Have Died on the Spot!"

I'll go first.

Mid-career and pre-children, I decided that perhaps I'd missed my true calling and should have been an actress. I took a series of acting lessons at the local repertoire theater, and was encouraged in my pursuits by the teacher. I boldly headed off to my first audition.

I knew I possessed a keen memory for dialogue (although not for remembering what I ate at lunch yesterday) and could feign an array of emotions and expressions with ease. Speaking on stage I could well handle.

But singing and dancing? Not so much. Not even a little.

My confidence fled the auditorium the moment they inexplicably asked a group of us to dance. It was a simple Do-Si-Do. I could manage that, I tried to convince myself. However, while everyone else was Do-ing, I found myself Si-ing. Over and over again. For what seemed like several painful weeks. I prayed that, amidst the onstage crowd of would-be actors, the audition committee somehow wouldn't detect my total lack of coordination.

Then I was prompted back onstage to sing. A solo.

Any thought of redeeming myself disappeared as I ran through my very best rendition of "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen." Oh yes, the gentlemen--and ladies--of the audition committee, the sole audience members sitting in the sixth row of the theater, they soon appeared merry enough. In fact, they were practically convulsed in laughter: peering up at me, nudging each other, and chuckling among themselves.

I didn't stick around to hear about call-backs.

The horror remains with me to this day. No one can top that, I tell my embarrassing story-telling comrades.

But wait--Glo has a tale to tell too.

It was Christmas, and she was in charge of coordinating the annual office party: decorating, planning refreshments, and ensuring that everyone was invited. The newest departmental graduate assistant passed her in the hallway that day. He was a shy and timid student; she was the warm, welcoming type. She wanted to make a point of personally inviting him.

"Don't forget about the Christmas party this afternoon," she told him with a bright smile. "We're having cookies and punch!" Except that wasn't exactly what she said. What happened was that her words became churned within some strange verbal blender of sorts, and what poured out of her mouth instead was, "We're having pookies and cunts!"

The horrific realization of her error hit her as soon as the words left her mouth, and she could do nothing more than simply keep walking past him.

He never showed at the party.

Oh. My. God. My story-telling comrades and I are hushed in empathetic horror.

Until John chimes in.

"I can top that."

John had met a young guy at a party, introduced by a mutual friend. He hadn't quite caught the stranger's last name, so politely asked, "Sorry, what was your name again?"

When the young man repeated it, John squinted and said, "Oh, was that (name redacted)?" Then, to further clarify his understanding, he tried spelling it and added, "like that guy who was all over the news a couple years ago for (redacted very lewd behavior)?"

"Um, yeah," the young man replied.

John paused. "Oh." He managed a nervous laugh. "So, you're not related to that guy or anything, are you?"

"Yeah," the stranger who might have otherwise become a friend answered. "Actually, he's my father."

My story and Glo's? Trumped. Right there.

We'd have died on the spot for him.

Any humiliation you care to share?


  1. Trying to think of something I haven't already written about... Throwing up all over my buddy's bathroom comes to mind, but I've covered that. Will get back to you.

  2. These are soo fun! I have 2, 1st at a wedding reception of a co-worker. I looked great, matching hose,shoes, purse just really felt good! So I go to the restroom with a friend and of coures reapply lipstick check looking good. I walked out in front of my friend right in front of the bar. Well she is lauging so hard so stops me after I have already crossed half the room with my dress tucked into my nylons!!!!! Classy! Hate nylons never wear them now!
    Ok next one really good! Working at St. V's in x-ray mid divorce preceedings. Lots of really hot residents. Of course there was one really sweet, cute, major crush! You know the heart finally felt after the marriage that should have never happened, just boring. So was chatting one night with this other doctor about life, we were friends. And it comes up that yes I occasionaly sleep with the soon to be ex, just because familarity, whatever. So I said however if Dr.McSteamy would ask me out that would stop no problem. So as I watch my friend fall to the floor laughung I turn around to see Dr.McSteamy himself standing there. Yes knowing he heard a good portion of that!!! Man I took an x-ray that was in my hand covered my extremly red face and walked away. Unfortunatley I had to help Mc. Steamy get an x-ray file. He was all class and acted like nothing happened. I could have died and he took it in stride. Heck of a guy. Other friend finally picked himself off the floor and continued to laugh himself till I caught up with him and smacked him later!

  3. I never thought I'd say this, but thank God I'm too old to remember.

  4. Bluzdude: New audience here, Bluz. You can repeat any of the experiences you've already referenced on your blog. The humiliation will be nice and fresh here.

    Connie: OK, so I'm dying on the spot for you, too. DYING. That would be a great scene in Gray's Anatomy!

    Anon: You must have some real doozies, that you've chosen to repress the memories.

  5. I like to think of each new day as an opportunity to forget the many many embarrassing situations I have put myself in. It is a lot. And unfortunately, most of the foot in mouth situations happen at work of all places.

  6. Sadly I can recount in vivid detail most of the embarrassing moments in my life. They revisit me constantly in those quite moments when I cannot sleep. Can you tell me why the memory is so good when it comes to those horrific moments we wish we could forget??

  7. Amanda: The office is a breeding ground for humiliation. Perhaps merit-based raises should consider that? If we got extra points for each horrifying experience, we'd probably be making millions.

    Anon #2: Good question. I was awake three nights this week, replaying a really unfortunate one in my mind. And of course, these memories only seem to retreat when a new, more embarrassing moment takes their place. So, we have that to look forward to.