I can be socially awkward. I don’t know where I picked this up or how it happened, because for the most part I’m great at meeting new people and interacting without being too much of a spazz. I’ve never had an issue with public speaking and I generally don’t make a fool out of myself in public. Or at least that’s my norm. Sometimes though…I have issues. Sometimes I get put on the spot and I really don’t know what to say and this is when my most awkward and most genius moments come about.
Usually being awkward happens when people are giving me an unexpected compliment or when a stranger flirts with me. I happen to be an arrogant, cocky and very self-assured egotistical being, so I generally know when I’m a genius with a capital “J” and know the sorts of comments I’ll get on my shenanigans. Yes, I could use some lessons in humility, but unfortunately I’m self-aware and I’m not ever going to try and talk down the things I do well or great at. On the other hand, I also know that I’m not the best looking gal according to society’s standards. Yes, I love how I look and I would love to see the girls society deem as beautiful do what I can do, but I know that men will rarely take a second look at me.
So sometimes men get to sneak an awkward moment in on me. Sure if I’m prepared for a flirtatious moment or I’m in an environment where I feel safe and at ease I can flirt with the best of flirts, but that’s not hard. I laugh, I smile, I joke and act my perfectly natural self and lots of times the interaction goes smoothly and I can move onto more important things. Other times I’m sitting on a Sky Train, wearing a pair of worn out sweats and a giant sweatshirt and I get approached by big black guy. He was cute, well dressed and didn’t look too much older than me so I got back to reading my book.
I had one of my ear buds out so that I could hear my stop announced so I wound up with this interaction:
Black guy on Skytrain: Hey girl, how ’bout you bring them pretty eyes over here?
Me: Lo siento senor! No comprende! No hablo inglais!
Black guy on Skytrain: *Blank stare*
This is one of my standard answers. If I don’t feel like talking to a stranger or I want to escape a situation that I’m not comfortable with, I’ve been known to yell out that particular phrase. When those credit card people try to talk to me, I yell that at them. If I say it fast enough they get really confused and either keep on talking so I have to yell it again, or they go away. I’ve had Jehovah’s Witnesses turn up at my door and they’ll get greeted with that phrase and all the other times when I’m stuck in a situation where I don’t know exactly what to say I simply say…
“Lo siento senor! No comprende! No hablo inglais.”
Learning the small smattering of Spanish that I know was totally worth it.
Except for the one time I was in Mexico for a week and everyone would originally try to speak to me in Spanish and I’d say that I “No hablo espanol” and they would yell back that I do speak Spanish and I’d have to explain that I only really know that one phrase…well, that one phrase and how to ask where the bathroom is.
Another favorite moment of mine was when I was on my way to the Greyhound to head home for the weekend. I was loaded down with my hiking bag and a shoulder bag that I’d shoved my laptop in and was tired because it was 8am and I’m not a morning person. I was again on a Sky Train, except I was leaning against a pole and taking a mini nap while I waited for my stop when this happened:
Black guy: Hey! Baby girl come over here and holla at me!
Me: You have a booger.
Black guy: Excuse me?!
Me: I’m sorry, I don’t know how to holla.
Black guy: *Confused look*
Me: And you really do have a booger.
Nothing however, gets much more awkward than when I do something weird and and don’t know how to recover a bit of normalcy to the conversation. Like this one time I was in a Starbucks in a Chapter’s reading a book I’d just bought and had my ear buds in at full volume. I was drinking a mocha frappacino and sitting in one of those overstuffed and over comfy chairs that all Starbucks have when someone walked up behind me and tapped me on the shoulder. Naturally I had a mouth full of crushed ice and mocha that sprayed out my nose instantly because I was so startled by the contact. Some of it actually made it back into cup that I was sipping from which led to the following conversation:
Stranger: I’m sorry! Are you ok?
Me: Yeah, I’m fine. You just scared the be-jeebus out of me.
Stranger: I’m incredibly sorry. You looked so absorbed in that book that I wanted to see what you were reading.
Me: Kresley Cole. She’s amazing.
Stranger: Yes, but she probably doesn’t have your pretty eyes.
Me: *Blink blink*
Stranger: *Looks at my cup that is covered in a combination of my snot and mocha frap* Can I buy you another one of those? It looks like I made you ruin that one. Maybe then we can chat some more and see where things go.
Me: No it’s ok. I like my drinks this way. More protien.
Yes, I totally took a sip as soon as I said that. I couldn’t help myself. I had no idea what to say to this guy and for some reason an annoying child in my head was screaming “STRANGER DANGER! STRANGER DANGER!” over and over again that had me convinced he wanted to harvest my body parts for whatever it is strangers would need to harvest my body parts for. Plus it was the first thing to come out of my mouth and I had to back myself up.
Needless to say, sometimes I can be really smooth and self assured. Other times I’m just a spazz.