Awkward Moments With Goldfish Part 3

My life is full of awkward. Here are some examples.

1. I’m hard of hearing. If there’s no background noise, I can hear alright, but at a busy restaurant in Little Tokyo where my friends and I went last weekend, you can forget about it. It was a long table. Even a regular hearing person would have trouble hearing someone at the far end of the table, but for me, it was impossible. I couldn’t even hear the person sitting right next to me.

In situations like that, I try to sit in the middle so I have the best chance of hearing, but as it happened, I was seated at the end. I spent the bulk of the lingering meal unintentionally eavesdropping on the table next to us. At one point, someone asked me a direct question at my table, and after being nudged by the person next to me, I looked over to find everyone looking at me, anticipating an answer to a question I didn’t even hear. It was like that dream you have where you’re giving a speech in school and look down to find that you’re naked. Uh, what?

2. I’ve mentioned before that I don’t know half of my coworkers names. Well, last week, they laid off five people. Zoinks! One of my coworkers, whose name I know, came into my office to tell me the news. She told me her assistant had been laid off and listed the other people, “They laid off Smudgy, Mongo The Incredulous, Beauregard Plantain III and Vice Admiral Leary, too!”

Those weren’t the real names, but I can’t remember what the real names were anyway. So, five people were laid off and I have no idea who they are. Through the process of elimination, I know that The Douche was one of them though. I still have no idea what his name was, but at least I don’t have to deal with him parking like this anymore:



So long, Douche. I really wish I had a coworker named Mongo The Incredulous.

3. I walk my dog in the same area every day, so naturally, I run into a lot of the same dog owners who also walk their dogs in the same area each day. One of the women we encounter a lot is friendly. She has three little fluffy white dogs, but two of them are friendly-ish, too. We chat whenever we run into each other. Not about anything of import; mostly about the weather or our dogs or the police helicopters overhead.

One day, she asked me who the other person is that sometimes walks my dog. My sister has a couple of half days each week, so when she gets home, she takes the dog out. I thought that’s who she meant, so I said, that’s my sister.

The next time I ran into the dog lady, she said, “Oh, I ran into your sister the other day,” and proceeded to give a summary of the conversation we had last time I saw her, not realizing that it was actually me. I was so flustered and confused that I missed the opportunity to say something like, “No, that was me.” Eventually, I realized that when I wear glasses, she thinks I’m one person and if I’m wearing contacts, she thinks I’m someone else. Apparently, I have a twin sister who wears glasses.

So, as it turns out, the Clark Kent/Superman thing isn’t quite as ridiculous as it seems.

Totally two different people. (Warner Brothers Entertainment)

Totally two different people.
(Warner Brothers Entertainment)

4. I stand outside on work breaks noodling on my phone. I put out a vibe that I don’t want to be bothered, but people bother me anyway. One day, I was standing outside and a man with a cast on his arm and no teeth (well, maybe he had some in the back, but there were none in the front) came up to me and mumbled something. What?

Picture 1I shook my head as the international sign for, no, I don’t have any money or want whatever you’re offering. He unzipped a canvas bag he was carrying and inside were a bunch of DVDs without any slicks (slicks are the paper inserts that go inside the clear plastic on a DVD case).

He mumbled something again. I shook my head again. He pointed down the street. I looked down the street at nothing in particular. He mumbled again and pointed at the unzipped bag. I shook my head. After an interminable time of mumbling, pointing and shaking of heads, he finally went away. I think he was trying to sell me a DVD, but the more I think about it, the less sure I am of what he actually wanted. He could have been trying to tell me there were aliens or a pot of gold down at the end of the street. Who knows.

5. Accidentally adding a smiley face at the end of a text message wishing condolences on the death of a friend’s cat. “I’m sorry your cat died. AHAHAHAHAHA! XD.”


More awkwardness

There are 51 comments

  1. djmatticus

    The glasses/contacts things is crazy hilarious!!
    I need to start waring my glasses at work so I can wear my contacts when I’m doing my crime fighting. Of course, that’s assuming I’m one of the good guys. ;-)


  2. Doobster418

    I have a hard time hearing in crowded, noisy restaurants, which, unfortunately, I have to go to more frequently than I’d care to because of my job and, you know, entertaining clients and prospects. Most of the time I sit there and nod and smile at what would seem like appropriate times and, when asked a direct question that I didn’t hear (which is most of the time), I will often answer “oh yes” or “of course” or “definitely” and hope that the question wasn’t something like “are you a registered sex offender?”


  3. Vince

    Genius post, GF. I can see the interactions as cartoons – mumbling DVD guy makes me laugh (and reads like classic Pratchett). I too wish that I worked with Mongo The Incredulous!


  4. Paul

    I think your alter ego should be called Koi. Very Eastern and mysterious and similar to Goldfish. I am twisted i know, but I laughed hard out loud at the “Sorry your cat died. Hahahaha!” Ha! Great post GF. Thanks for the laughs.


  5. Blathering

    A friend & I used to use nicknames to refer to co-workers in our emails because it was clear that management could read our emails, however it would have been pretty obvious who we were talking about from the stories relayed. Most memorable names were Calamity Jane (clue: real name Jane, real personality: drama queen), Juggles The Clown, and Cupcake ( Cupcake was the director, who was male). Made for some funny emails alright.


  6. ddupre315

    I have that background noise thingy too, it sucks truly and frustrates my husband but there’s not much I can do about so I just say sorry but it is what it is….oh and can you repeat that while facing me please so I can watch your mouth form the words and the air carries the sound directly to my face?


  7. starfish

    People wearing big glasses when you’ve never seen them wear these before can be very confusing! The first time I saw one of the guys from capoeira class in his big, black framed glasses I was so unsure about his identity that I asked our instructor whether it really was the same guy I had known for about two years. I like your idea of an alter ego called Hilda, I’d like to meet her – she sounds like a rather bookish gal :D
    I’m not hard of hearing, but on the contrary overly sensitive and easy to distract, so I hear and analyze all the background noise but don’t understand the person talking to me. Recently I’ve started to follow your awesome idea/advice to just try and repeat what I think I’ve heard, which comes out as pretty hilarious stuff; and it drives my husband insane at times. Well, just stop mumbling with your back to me when the tap is running next to me, big guy.


    1. goldfish

      I suppose I do look different in glasses over contacts, but my glasses aren’t that big or bulky.

      Cheers! As someone who can’t hear, Creative Listening Skills come in very handy. :)


  8. Uncle Guacamole

    Hopefully, you don’t have a husband who yells vicious things at you, insisting that you get a hearing aid. Sadly, this is what my mother does to my father (and they are both 80 years of age). Do you do okay hearing on the phone?


    1. goldfish

      Oh my. No, nothing like that.

      On the phone, I use my left ear only since the hearing in that ear is better than the right. I still have trouble sometimes, especially when people insist on using speaker phones.


      1. Uncle Guacamole

        The reason I asked about the phone is that you may not be aware that every state has a variety of phone equipment available to help the hard-of-hearing and it is free of charge, There are phones which allow you to increase the volume and phones that display the other person’s words across a tiny screen so you can catch the words you missed and verify if you heard it right. They call these “voice carry over” phones. You can find contact info by Googling the hard of hearing telecommunications program for your state or by looking in the info pages in front of your local phone directory. So many people feel uncomfortable about partial hearing loss and don’t take advantage of free equipment that could make their lives easier. My father is one of those people. He’d just rather pretend he heard me when I know he didn’t.


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