Awkward Moments, Part one


 

The Reconciliation of Jacob and Esau, as in Ge...
The Reconciliation of Jacob and Esau, as in Genesis 33, oil on panel, at the National Galleries of Scotland (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

I’ve traveled through a lifetime discovering moments that were challenging, or to put it in simpler terms, I discovered those awkward, embarrassing moments when time seemed to stand still with the spotlight focused on me.  I didn’t mind attention occasionally but how could I divert it when I preferred privacy?

 

What did I learn from the embarrassment and awkward moments?  I learned that life goes on, day after day, and those moments are remembered more kindly after time has smoothed the harshness and gave me a chance to look at them objectively.

 

I did not have awkward moments of Biblical proportions like those of Jacob.  Jacob had moments that were extremely awkward.  First, he stole the birthright and blessing that rightfully belonged to his twin, Esau.  Jacob fled to save his life.  Esau wanted to kill him.  His troubles were not over.  He met Rachael and worked seven years to win Rachael’s hand, but after the wedding feast and a night of revelry Jacob woke up beside a new wife.  He had been tricked!  Instead of Rachael, he was married to her sister, Leah.   Jacob’s problems were much worse than mine.

 

The following four scenarios display moments when I was uncomfortable.  There are countless others that disturb my dreams and make me avoid people until sufficient time has passed.

 

Consider the job interview when my prospective boss and his wife were driving me around, showing me off, discovering my likes and dislikes, my strengths and weaknesses.  It was a time when I should have been listening or politely answering questions.  Instead, I did the unthinkable and inexcusable.  I assumed his wife was pregnant and asked when she was due.  The interior of the car became icy cold and all conversation stopped.  She was not pregnant, just fluffy.

 

Perhaps as father of the bride I should have taken special pains with my appearance.  After all, i did escort the bride up to the altar in view of the guests.  I was in the reception line when the bride asked, “How long has your fly been open?”  It was too late to worry about being awkward. My only choice was to greet each guest warmly and thank them for coming, after of course, discreetly zipping up my pants.

 

My six year old son and I were in a supermarket buying supplies for dinner.  The store was crowded but that was of little concern.  I only had one child with me.  What could possibly go wrong? Unfortunately, in the aisle we were in a large well fed man in coveralls was filling his cart.  My son looked him over and shouted, “Hey, hey, hey!   It’s Fat Albert!”  There was no place to hide.  No place to run.  We deserted our shopping cart and just left quietly.

 

In Spanish classes I scraped by, never becoming fluent.  I could read and write in Spanish but because of a minor tongue tie conversational Spanish was not my forte.  In the language section of the college library were tapes to review.   I went in thinking I could brush up my conversational skills.  While reviewing, I heard my professor saying, “Be careful to pronounce your words.  Listen to this gentleman.  It’s the worst case I’ve ever heard.”  I listened closely as my own voice stumbled through the language.  There was nothing I could do.  It was true.  My pronunciation was terrible.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I Became a Writer Accidentally on Purpose


Anglican choir music - a guest choir practices...
Image via Wikipedia

When I was ready to make choices concerning my
career path I was surprised to find that some choices were chosen for me, based
not on what I could do, but for what I couldn’t do.

When it was
time to make a career choice,

I had to
decide who I wanted to be,

For each
occupation has its own voice,

And I wanted
the spotlight shining on me,

Career
Choice #1

I loved
languages and I took great pride,

Spanish,
German, and Latin were on my list,

If I said I
was diligent in my studies, then I lied,

But I
enjoyed language structures, and I insist,

That some of
the sounds tangled my tongue,

Until the
day I ventured into the language lab,

When I heard
the teacher describing to everyone,

(My recorded
voice was booming and I felt his stab),

He remarked,
“He’s terrible with his pronunciations,”

I had other career
choices, this one wouldn’t be missed,

So cross off
language translator from my list,

Career
Choice #2

I often woke
up excited about the new day,

Songs would
be bursting from my lips,

Carpe diem!
It didn’t matter work or play,

The whole
world was at my fingertips,

Perhaps
singing would be a great career too,

But that thought
was soon nipped in the bud,

When my
career in singing all fell through,

Ostracized
and disgraced, my name was mud,

In mid-song the
choir director brought us to a halt,

She loudly announced,
“Someone’s off key,”

“We can’t
sing this cantata because of someone’s fault,

I wasn’t
worried because I knew it wasn’t me,

Then she
said, “That voice is on this side,”

She put us
in groups to narrow it down,

Finally she
was next to me, and I couldn’t hide,

She said, “I’ve
finally located that awful sound,”

I could
still sing for part of my everyday fun,

But I knew
my singing career was totally done,

Career Choice
#3

Like many
high school boys I was ready to perform,

I wanted riches
and fame, my name up in lights,

I did very
well in sports, I was ahead of the norm,

I knew what
was expected, I’d even wear tights,

My teams
weren’t exceptional, although we did well,

One
championship or two, the stats weren’t great,

If I would
go to the next level, only time would tell,

But I found
out the results of my professional fate,

“Son, there
are a few factors holding you back,

“You need to
be bigger, stronger, faster, just for a start,

And if you
had a lot more talent the money we’d stack,”

So, no pro
sports for me, just break my heart,

Choice
number three was out of my league,

I was tired
of losing but I wasn’t fatigued,

Career
Choices (To be continued)

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