Day of Awkwardness

2:47 AM

Fellow Wall Bumpers, Toe Stumpers, Head Smashers and Rug Trippers; esteemed Talk Fasters, Word Slippers and "Like" Users; honorable Weird Look Collectors, Goofy Grinners and Nervous Twitchers: Today is the day of your vindication. Today is the day we start to overcome our bruises and blushes and stand up boldly to proclaim, We are AWKWARD -- and we are not ashamed!

Today is a day of confession and camaraderie, a day where we tell our stories and empower one another through commiseration. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the Day of Awkwardness!

People outright told me I was weird, which I milked as a compliment as long as I could. Facing the facts, I am. For instance, just on normal days, I sit behind the computer screen and tremble uncontrollably -- not (primarily) from cold but from excitement after reading something particularly controversial. I come under the power of some Holmesian twitch, as if at any moment I'll rub my hands together and cackle in delight at the thrill of an argument. Furthermore, I wonder if I ought to classify myself as ADD -- my attention span lasts a split second unless I'm head over heel enthralled or else doodling on the note paper. Hence the reason my pastor always seems to look right at me each Sunday. I'm constantly tapping, twirling and tipping over. Just today I tried to pull on my right boot as I was about to make a smooth exit from my friend's house and nearly toppled completely over. Thank goodness for walls.

Speaking of which, there was one occasion at a gym where I was walking with the cool college students, wearing my atrocious blue-and-white clunky sneakers and carrying my backpack casually on one shoulder. I became mesmerized with the dangle of the orange centipede keychain -- so much so that a second later I banged full-on smack into the wall. (Oh, ladies -- there were gentlemen present.) On a side note, I never could accept sympathy from college students dying so hard from laughter that they could barely gasp out, "A-a-a-re you o-kay?"

Another of my peculiar habits is stair climbing. I'm afraid my thirtieth cousin thrice removed was an evolutionary missing link, for (when nobody's looking) I always drop to all fours and gallop up the stairs. I did not just say that. I think it's psychological conditioning, since I've perfected the art of tripping up stairs. It's easier on the wrists to consciously go low. Oddly, I'm quite incapable of tripping down stairs. Well, as incapable as I try to be. You know the pastor I alluded to earlier? I tripped up the church stairs in front of him once.

I like to keep my reputation stellar.

Don't get me talking about talking. Oh, I can talk all suave and coherent, mind, but not when I'm serious and especially not when I'm telling a joke. "Like" and "you know" and "um" and an uncontrollable "ha ha" clutter my speech. I've started mentally collecting the weird looks triggered by my open mouth. And please, surely I'm not the only one who has the impossible urge to laugh at every single joke -- even the ones that aren't supposed to be? And then have your brazen laugh echo through the silence as all horrified eyes slowly turn upon you?

Telephones only increase the embarrassment. (I set the unchallenged Guinness World Record for most awkward pauses during a telephone conversation.) You all remember that I phone banked for a political campaign and that we had scripts. The introductory babble of who-I-was and vote-for-so-and-so must have stuck -- permanently. Once, I called a lady about the church Christmas play. Being phone-phobic, much anxiety went into the punching in of the numbers. A transcript hereby follows:

"Hello?"

"Hi! Is Mrs. X there?"

"This is she."

"Hi, my name is Bailey, and I'm -- I mean, ha, this is Bailey."

I forgot to ask if Scott Walker could count on her vote.

On this Day of Awkwardness, I am claiming these my oddities as the paragons of genius, on par with messy desks and crazy hair. I am not ashamed of my awkwardness, and neither, dear friends, should you. Friends! Awkwards! Unite! Proclaim every day a Day of Awkwardness! Because, well, every day is.

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23 impressions

  1. This is totally my day! I make the most ridiculous, clumsy mistakes ALL the time, and I am constantly accidentally making up new words.

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  2. This was a hilarious post! :D

    I got stung by a bee on my hip yesterday and have since been awkwardly stumbling around wearing pajama pants over the huge swelling....

    I am refusing to say I sat on the bee while I was out in my lounge chair in the sun. It was NOT there when I sat down, it must have flown up into it while I was sitting there.

    The fact that I found if half-mashed under me after feeling the painful sting does not help this refusal at all.

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  3. Ha, this made me smile. Every day that I leave my house (and some when I don't) is a day of awkwardness for me. :)

    I'm also extremely talented at falling up the stairs. My grandpa picks at me about it, and I tell him that I like to mix things up a bit. There was a time, though, several months ago, that I fell *down* two staircases within a month and sported huge bruises/knots that still haven't completely gone away.

    As for talking, I'm generally a quiet person, especially around people I don't know very well. But I've recently realized that if the conversation turns to something I'm interested in, I have a tendency to blurt out streams of useless trivia or information about the topic. Then I stop abruptly and try to recover from my outburst.

    And I hate telephones. I don't even answer the phone at our house unless I'm the only one home and it's someone related to us or someone who I know really well. That's why I don't understand cell phones- I cannot imagine for the life of me why someone wants a phone permanently attached to their hand. Even calling the library to renew my books caused me severe mental trauma until a few months ago. :)

    I'm glad I'm not the only awkward one. I should just accept it about myself, because consciously making an effort to be less awkward tends to have the opposite effect for me.

    ~Kristin

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  4. I tripped up the stairs twice in one evening. In heels and a dress. At the orchestra...

    I love your post. :)

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  5. Lol. I haven't heard some of these...I'll put them in my book of black mailing. ;)

    Seriously, I've never seen anyone give you a weird look. I think you're rather paranoid.

    And, it's easier to jump down the stairs, but it increases the risk of sliding down every single bump on your elbows. Did I ever tell you the time I got my elbow stuck in the stair rail? Yup.

    Never eat carrots when you're making a new friend. It's awkward.

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  6. "The Day of Awkwardness": great post!

    Ah, Bailey you and your "stair climbing." That was hiliaroius

    Love you!

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  7. I've had some awkward moments myself.... none are coming to mind just now. Probably because I've chosen to bury them as deep as possible. =P
    Sometimes I do things though that makes people wonder if my real hair color is actually brown. Uh..yeah.

    I'm awkward and you're awkward, maybe we can just be the new normal. LOL

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  8. This post very much describes me, though I've gotten a bit better about the awkward phone calls since I started working full time. I can't say I take the stairs on all fours, but when my awkwardness occurs it comes with a full on blush. I appreciate your candidness and the smile it brought me. :)

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  9. Hahaha!!! I love it! I'm a trip-on-nothing-but-the-air kind of person, so I particularly liked the part about gentlemen being present, as they always seem to be when the air under my shoes bunches up. Also I am a fellow phone-phobic, so I have had my share of awkward pauses and ridiculous babbling! It is a wonderful time to be awkward!

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  10. Oh Bailey... I love this post! I can relate to several things mentioned, believe me! I'm a toe-stumper, definitely. I'm a fast-talker, certainly. I can have those nervous twitches... and I have vaulted up the stairs on all-fours (it is safer that way!). I'm sure I could add many things to my list of "how Rachel is weird". Thank you for being so honest and for making me grin widely this morning! And yes... I had to laugh a couple times, simply because I know! :)

    Long live the awkward ones!

    God bless!
    Rachel

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  11. LOL, Bailey! I love you so much. = ) I appreciate people who know how to laugh at themselves. They make me feel more comfortable in my *own* awkwardness.

    We SACHE moms are reading "Lies Homeschooling Moms Believe", and it's been very good for me. Your post today compliments what I've been reading. Act naturally (my favorite oxymoron)? Nope. Just be real.

    Huzzah for awkwardness!

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  12. Hi there,
    I am a homeschool mom from Oklahoma and just wanted to send a note of encouragement. God has surely blessed you with the ability to write for His glory! Your ability to share what He has taught/is teaching you is amazing and real. Thanks for sharing. I'm sure you are ministering to more young ladies than you'd think possible. :)

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  13. Ahh... yes. I can surely relate.

    If I'm nervous I either can't think of anything to say or I keep babbling on uncontrollably (and later on can't remember anything I said.)
    Unfortunately I haven't found an in between. :-)

    Thanks for sharing. You made me laugh out loud.

    Unite!

    Blessings,
    Leah

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  14. I don't think I'm awkward when I'm moving around, but I feel extremely awkward when I'm trying to make conversation. And I often feel like I look awkward, unless I've made a particularly good wardrobe choice.
    I completely agree with Bethany about the carrot thing. The same goes for salad.
    <><

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  15. Your gym story reminds me of something similar that happened to me while I was still in public school....
    I hated gym class. (Who likes it, really?) My gym class was using the weight room that particular day. I was partnered with one of the 'cool girls'. So, being the awkwardly uncordinated person I am, I somehow managed to walk into a bench press bar. Straight into it. Did I mention that it was right at my eye level?! Knocked my glasses off my nose and gave me a bruised eye. Joyous.
    Then there was the time we were playing volleyball in that darn gym class and I hit the ball over the net and it bounced of the kid on the other teams head and landed in the garbage can....
    -Alex
    www.bigsisterofmany.blogspot.com

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  16. Oh, Bailey. I really did laugh out loud when I read that part about you going up the stairs on all fours. (Maybe because I've done it too.)

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  17. This is hysterical! Do you really go upstairs on all fours? I had totally forgotten until I read this post that I used to do that!! I always maintained to my mother that it was faster. That's right. I was being efficient. Uh huh.

    LOL

    Adele

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  18. hahaha...made my day, Bailey :-)

    Believe me, I needed some assurance that my awkwardness was okay today...'cause I certainly had a bad case of it.

    First, I was in the library studying (and commenting in a certain blog discussion *ah-hem*) when one of my drawing classmates came over, greeting me with the typical 'Hey! What's up?'. I generally return they 'Hey' and ask how they are. (However is one supposed to respond to 'what's up?' That baffles me.) This time, however, I actually answered it with an explanation of how math was going. Let's just say, I'm not sure this is the way to answer 'What's up?'

    Several hours later, I'm in the classroom waiting for drawing class to begin. Another one of my classmates is a fellow homeschooler, and we said hi. However, together we make a pretty good picture of unsocialized homeschoolers. After a moment of awkwardness, we shrugged and turned away. It was a very unmistakable shrug saying, 'This is awkward! I don't know what to say.'

    Oh, yeah--it was awkward.

    Up the stairs on all fours? I do it, too. *Shhh* Don't tell.

    ((hugs))

    Amy

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  19. Okay, I laughed. Out loud. And that in itself is awkward because my sister is in the same room, studying. I have done many of the same things... though most of my worst talking slip-ups/saying really stupid things have happened when only my sisters were around. :) One of the most awkward things I do is accidently snort when I'm laughing. Usually in public and usually someone comments. But hey. What other people think doesn't really matter does it?
    lol. Justine

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  20. I find myself snorting when I laugh sometimes. It's horrible ... and it always, always happens when I'm talking to either a) a good-looking guy I just met or b) an awesome girl I just met.

    Always, always it's someone I just met. *head desk*

    Yeah, and once I tripped going down the stairs at my piano recital. Not a good thing.

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  21. This made my evening, Bailey... ;)

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  22. I have a tendency to fall of the chair I am sitting on. I don't really understand how you can fall off something you are sitting on...

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  23. Abby--I did that just the other day! Glad to hear I'm not the only one.

    However, I was talking on the phone when it happened and the phone landed across the room. After getting up and retrieving the phone, I had the pleasure of explaining to my friend that the tremendous crashing sound was my falling off a chair.

    Can anyone say "awkward"???

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