Today Was Almost As Awkward As An Episode of The Office

Part of the reason why I am obsessed with The Office is because the situations in the show are so hilariously awkward. Also, I love how Kevin talks like Cookie Monster. And I think Jim is a serious hottie. Anyway, life imitated art for me today as I had one of the most awkward days in the history of time. Let’s take a look, shall we?

1.) I went to Dunkin Donuts and the guy called me “baby” and stared deep into my eyes as he handed me my drink. Which he made incorrectly. Then I got flustered and left without a straw. So…that was dumb.

2.) C and I somehow lost not one (1) but two (2) mailbox keys. We finally got new ones made, but this meant that we hadn’t received our mail in…a while. I went to the post office to fix this problem and had to explain to the guy what happened. I tried to make a joke about it, but he didn’t find it amusing.

If only my trip could have been this simple

I guess to him mail is an important matter and should be treated as such. We mostly just get direct response crap, so to me mail is an annoying matter and should be taken lightly. The cranky post office man went to the back room and was rummaging around from somewhere between 7-15 minutes. Meanwhile a huge line formed behind me. People started to get really antsy. I think they wanted to kill me. The woman behind me was tapping her foot and sighing as the mail guy tried to retrieve my lost mail.
“Is anyone home back there!?” she asked me in an exasperated tone.

“Um…yeah. He’s in the back.” I responded. What did she want from me? I was not about to explain my embarrassing situation to her!

Finally the cranky mail guy came back and said, “We don’t have your mail. Come back at 4:30.”

“But…but…” I sputtered.

“There’s nothing back there. I just checked.”

“But we haven’t gotten our mail in weeks! We must have SOMETHING back there.”

“Come back at 4:30 when the carrier comes back to the post office.”

“But…I can’t. I’m using my lunch break to be here right now.”

“Well then come back tomorrow.”

That must have been a joke. But it wasn’t. I’m making C go next time. Enough of that.

3.) Then I had to go through the blisteringly awkward dance known as, “Do I pretend I know this person? Do I reintroduce myself? Do I just hope that I’ve met this person and assume that I have?” That is one of the most awkward situations the human condition has to offer. If you pretend you know the person in question, then you’re spending the whole conversation racking your brain trying to figure out where you’ve actually met. If you reintroduce yourself, then you run the risk of the person saying, “Um…yeah. We met last week. Remember?” and then you’re basically saying that the individual is a forgettable person. And that’s pretty offensive. If you don’t introduce yourself at all (which is the choice I opted for) then the other person is just confused and that creates weirdness. Here’s how it happened for me:

A new employee started at my company. Before he started my boss told me that we had a mutual friend and had, in fact, met before. How she knew this, I don’t know… probably should have asked about that. Would have saved some trouble. Anyway, I didn’t remember meeting this guy, but I’m good at remembering names and bad at remembering faces (unfortunate, I know) so I assumed that she was right and I was a space cadet. Entirely possible.

My inspiration for the day

When the new employee showed up for the first day, he did not look familiar.  I started to doubt that I had met him before. Because of this, I was nervous about “meeting” him. Should I introduce myself? Should I say, “Good to see you again”? Did he think he had met me? Did he have no idea who I was? Instead of dealing with this confusion, I just avoided him. This actually made it more awkward, as I’m sure you can imagine. For instance, I had to go talk to someone who works at the next desk over from New Employee. Most people would have at least addressed New Employee at that point, but I was too confused and uncomfortable to do so. So I just ignored his presence. Nice, Lauren. Way to make the new guy comfortable.

A few days later, we came out of our respective bathrooms at the exact same time. Literally. It was like a sitcom. I didn’t have time to think about what to do. So I just started talking to him as if we were finishing up some amazing conversation that got cut short. What is wrong with me? Seriously.

“Oh my god, hey!” I said.

“Hey…” He said, searching my face for a clue a.) as to what my name was and b.) about what was going on.

I then proceeded to bombard him with questions. I asked him what he thought of the area around our office. I forgot that our city is not that big, so he’s probably spent every weekend in this area even when he didn’t work here. Stupid question. Because of this dumb question, his answer was pretty short. I didn’t have much time to prepare another one. I was flustered. Barbara Walters, I was not.

I asked another generic question. He gave another answer. Then he said, ” Oh…I’m ‘insert name here’ by the way.”

Oh. My. God. How embarrassing.

I’ve been rambling and babbling and interrogating this whole time and he has no clue who I am.

“Oh! Hi! Yeah, I’m Lauren. Oh my god!” I said, totally flustered. My face was a lovely shade of peachy-pink.

“Yeah I think we might have met once before. Don’t you know ‘insert mutual friend’s name”?”

“Yeah. Yeah I do. Yeah we totally met. Like, a long time ago.” Awkwardness must bring out my inner valley girl.

We smiled awkwardly and then realized we both had to walk the same way since we were leaving the bathroom. I couldn’t believe that I had created such awkwardness without trying. I could probably fill the role of Michael Scott if they were still trying to find a replacement.

We chatted for a few more minutes on the way back from the bathroom and it got less awkward. And it’s been less awkward ever since. No thanks to me. Oh, and that day was his birthday too. Whoopsy doopsy. Happy birthday, my poor co-worker. Sorry I put you through that. It’ll get better from here on out.

Do you have any Michael Scott-esque awkwardness to share with me? Please?


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