I sympathize with those who have experienced embarrassing moments in public. I don’t mean PUBLIC like Paris’ sex tape or Janet’s “wardrobe malfunction,” though I doubt either of those incidents was particularly embarrassing for those involved. Stay classy, ladies. What I mean are those personally torturous moments like walking straight into a glass door at a party or realizing five minutes too late that you had something very noticeable and very disgusting lodged in your teeth while flirting with that Starbucks barista.

Such was the case the other night as I was jogging along, daydreaming about what to binge on once I got back to my apartment. So here I am, heaving down the sidewalk when this kid, probably about fifteen or sixteen, runs out his front door and across the street to where his friends are waiting in a parked car. As he skips along the grass, hopping from the curb onto the street pavement, his sneaker tread catches the blacktop at just the right angle and then flat out refuses to go any further. His foot stays put, but the rest of this kid’s body goes sprawling, S-P-R-A-W-L-I-N-G, across the street. Arms out ala the chick from Titanic, he does the most perfect belly flop onto the concrete. It is awesome.

The kid’s friends instantly start to roar with laughter. And I really, really wanted to join them. There is nothing funnier than watching someone else hurt himself. Tripping down stairs. Slipping on ice. A good toe stub or funny bone bump. When it’s you, it sucks. When it’s someone else, it’s hilarious.

Yet during that moment of weakness, flashing through my mind were all the many times that I myself had done the exact same thing… or far worse. Fainting as I gave my seventh grade science fair speech. Getting my hair caught in someone else’s headgear in junior high. Busting out my two front teeth at pompon camp. Aside from the general misery that accompanies those fond memories, I still clearly recall the acute agony felt when realizing that not only were my peers laughing at me, but also the adults. They’re the ones who are supposed to protect you and yell at those bratty punks to shut the hell up when you slip down the rain-soaked hallway. When instead they just chuckle, you are clearly a total loser.

So I took the high road. I just kept jogging like I had witnessed absolutely nothing out of the ordinary. The kid dragged himself over to his friends, examining his bloody and bruised body while they kept laughing. And I just kept silent… until I was definitely out of earshot.

Image: Francesco Marino / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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One Response to “I Feel Ya”

Love, love, love this! Freakin hilarious.

Heather Maulucci
October 29th, 2009