Friday, June 15, 2012

10 Odd Things You Might Be Doing Without Even Realizing That You Are

1. Saying “excuse me” when you sneeze, even though no one else is in the room.

  That’s very polite of you. It’s also slightly schizophrenic. But that’s okay. As long as you keep the habit going, you’ll be sure to apologize at more appropriate moments, like when you suddenly let loose with a surprise rip-snorter at Sunday church service, blowing the pretty little hats off of three elderly women sitting in front of you, making them think the Dust Bowl has returned.

2. Saying “I’m sorry, I didn’t catch that” when you didn’t understand what someone just said.

  Why are you sorry? You didn’t do anything wrong, they did, since they obviously didn’t say whatever it was very clearly or there wouldn’t have been an issue. Perhaps we should change the phrase to “speak LOUDER and look at me when you say that, Mumbledore.”

3. Reading all of the credits at the end of a movie.

  Do you really need to know the names of all the stunt people? Or which catering service provided the caviar and nibbly bits so that Brad and Angelina would have enough protein to continue looking effortlessly beautiful as they saved the world from lower-billing actors who yelled a lot and did mean things?

4. Lifting your legs when you drive over railroad tracks.

  Or touching metal somewhere in the car. Or pulling on your ear lobe. This is the residue from childhood games that parents invented to keep you occupied and quiet. It really doesn’t improve your life in any way.

5. Walking on your tippy-toes when get out of the shower and head toward the bigger bathmat in front of the sink.

  The floor is going to get just as wet no matter what, it’s the same amount of water dripping off your body. Only people who have appeared in “The Nutcracker” need to be walking like that.

6. As you prepare to make a right turn onto a side street, you swing your car out into the left lane so you can make this really special, wide-ass maneuver that will guarantee a successful mission.

  You really don’t need to do that. Your car was designed to make this kind of turn without you ending up in a ditch. It’s unnecessary. It also completely annoys the people who were peacefully driving in that left lane and minding their own business, when suddenly they have to slam on their brakes because your car is moving in the opposite direction of your turn signal. Assuming you even used one of those things.

7. You set the house alarm, walk five feet to the back door, then have a small paranoia attack and race back to the alarm to make sure you set it correctly.

  And of course you did set it right. You always do, because it’s not complicated and you do it every day. But you know that if you don’t double check it, you will worry about it all the way to work and then be completely unproductive the rest of the day.

8. You try to put on socks while standing up, something goes terribly wrong with your balance, and you end up crashing into a piece of furniture that was just innocently sitting there and waiting for you to dust it.

  And you knew it was going to happen, but you thought you could pull it off anyway. Sadly, you’re not 17 and limber anymore. Now you actually have to take a small break and rest between socks. Maybe even lay on the bed and watch another episode of “House Hunters International” before you attend to the other foot.

9. You give your cat an “official” name, but then never actually use that name again.

  Instead, the cat must suffer through an endless string of evolving nicknames that are somehow related but still don’t make any sense, consisting of made-up words and repeated syllables that sound cute. The poor furry thing should probably be in therapy for some type of identity neurosis, but that type of coverage isn’t included in the Kitty Medical Plan. Just give little Bo-Bo Snookie Jumper something shiny to play with and things will be fine.

10. You take a tiny, unimportant incident and turn it into a torrid melodrama of pain and betrayal. At least in your head.

  So you find this strange pencil on your partner’s desk in your shared home office. Your partner doesn’t use pencils, what’s up with that? And it’s been sharpened recently, a sure sign that someone is up to no good. And there’s a faint, possible perfume/cologne smell wafting from the evil wood. It doesn’t smell like anything your partner wears. This pencil belongs to somebody else!

  What has been going on behind your back? Is it an affair? Oh my God! Your mind races as you mentally run through all of your friends and acquaintances, trying to determine which of them has a fondness for stick-like things with graphite in the middle and is also a slut. Who has been lying to you when? Which skanky ho has been smiling sweetly at you during happy hour at The Regal Beagle, and then running off to recreate scenes from “The Postman Always Rings Twice” with your formerly-beloved partner who is apparently not the person you thought you knew? You stagger to the liquor cabinet and guzzle everything, because it feels important to do that right at the moment.

  Two weeks later, after you’ve written to Dr. Phil, Oprah and Ellen, and even anonymously posted questions on some blog named “How To Seek Proper Revenge on Those Who Have Disappointed You In Life”, the phone rings. You set aside your latest bottle of gin, belch, and pick up the receiver. It’s your mother. Always the penny-pincher, she’s wondering if she left her favorite pencil at your house the other day. You know, the day when she and your partner got together to sketch out plans for your surprise anniversary party next weekend?

  Uh oh. You might want to call that lawyer back and have him tear up a few freshly-signed documents…


  1. I've had this feeling that I'm being watched lately. My friends have written it off to paranoia brought about from smoking too much weed back in the 60s. But now I see it's been you all this time. Clearly, this piece is about me, right? ;)

    1. Dearest Jayne,

      Shhhh. Stop telling everyone that I've been stalking you. This would be really bad for my PR department. Just keep doing what you do so well and I'll keep blogging about it... ;)


  2. I would like to go to the Regal Beagle. NOW. come get me! that last phrase was sadly used during my senior year. It never quite brought what I intended, to the yard.

    1. Tiffany,

      I've actually been to the Regal Beagle, and imagine my surprise when I discovered that they had named a booth after you. Who knew? I also think there's an item on the menu that might be a tribute to you, but I'm not sure. Have you ever been associated with the Kirksville Korndog? Maybe I'm just imagining things...