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A very embarrassing moment

Posted by Didi Gorman on


A jet of cold coke surged out of the bottle with so much force, that it shot right into my face, gushed into my eyes and into my nose, drenched my hair, soaked my shirt, hit the ceiling and drizzled back down.

Oh dear.

It was my 21st birthday party, with dozens of friends at our place; dozens of friends who were now gaping at me as the coke was dripping down my forehead, forming a little puddle on the floor around me.

There were chuckles and ‘Are you ok?’ –Well, no, I’m really not– and someone escorted me out of the room, my eyes still squeezed shut, droplets of coke streaming down my cheeks, smearing my carefully-put makeup into sticky smudges.

I remember very vividly an urge to cry or to disappear altogether.

I took a few minutes before I returned to the room. It wasn’t only a thorough cleanup that I needed; it was mostly pulling myself together, and that took a while.

I did return to the party eventually, still slightly smelling of coke, tears not entirely dry, either.

I can’t really tell if I enjoyed the rest of the evening. I may have, I may have not. I simply don’t remember anything from that party apart from the coke incident.

We all have a story like that, where something totally embarrassing happened to us while other people were watching.

My story today is dedicated to all of you who have experienced anything similar, whether you squirted ketchup on your shirt at a restaurant; tripped on a slippery sidewalk in the middle of a busy street; tried to impress your buddies with a roll-over, but instead, landed unceremoniously on your back with a thump; ripped your jeans while bending in a public place; burped while speaking at a get-together; tumbled down the stairs at a friend’s house; dropped a tray full of food at the diner; fell off a kayak while sailing with friends; rolled your cart into the beer stack at the grocery store.

You probably put on a brave smile to show you were cool about it, but I know how you truly felt.

You might have even resented your friends for laughing or for the famous ‘Are you ok?’ which in a way, made you feel worse because it extended the pathetic-ness of the situation for a few more painful seconds.

I want to tell you that the reason your friends were laughing is that they were as embarrassed as you were at that moment. They just didn’t know what to do. I don’t think they really found it hilarious.

I therefore hug you today, and I know your story will one day help relieve somebody else experiencing an embarrassing moment.

After all, I sure know how it feels. My face once too, dripped with coke.

By Didi Gorman