Excuse me if it looks like I don’t want to be here, but in all honesty I don’t. You see, I’m what you call ‘socially awkward’. I’d much rather be at home in my bed or around people who actually are like me – that is, awkward.
I stare continuously at my phone, hoping that someone, anyone, will message me and get me out of this situation. I sit and fiddle with the touchscreen, avoiding eye contact. Come on, break out a smile. Oh God – awkward.
Simple questions such as, “so, what’s new?” end up with me replying with something like, “oh nothing, just here, alive”, when really what I want to say is, “please please please go away, you’re making my situation a lot worse than it needs to be. My life is so uninteresting it will literally put you to sleep. Do yourself a favour, the end”. Awkward.
Biting my nails, even though they’re already down to the core, wondering when I’ll be leaving this place. 20 minutes, an hour, 2, 3? Someone help me, any takers? No, just sit there and converse like a normal person. Open your mouth! Say something … “So, nice weather we’re having.” Oh god, you’re an idiot, nice weather? It’s winter! Awkward.
Okay, so how much time has passed? 3 minutes. Right. Back to looking hopelessly at my phone, still praying someone will whisk me away to Neverland. “Want to come out for a quick fag?” My reply being, “oh no, I’ll just stay here, looking pretty”. Looking pretty?! Gosh. Why would I go out in this lovely winter weather to inhale toxic fumes since I don’t smoke. I don’t drink either, so while everyone else is getting “merry” I can’t even drown my sorrows. Instead I sit here, legs crossed being awkward.
What am I doing here? In all fairness, what made me agree to say yes when I got asked? Was it another impulsive answer of mine? Oh wait, it was me attempting to step out of my comfort zone. Stupid comfort zone. I know to stay put next time. I wouldn’t be sat here with my obvious fake smile and ridiculously exaggerated laugh, being completely and utterly, you’ve guessed it…awkward.
Oh great, they’re back. I was actually enjoying my 4 minutes and 53 seconds of peace. Now they’re back to humbug me and make me want to pull out my eyeballs. Snap out of it! Oh no, she’s talking to you. “You don’t look like you want to be here babe.” You’re not as dumb as you look then, my actual reply being, “oh don’t be silly, if I didn’t want to be here then trust me I wouldn’t, I’m a spring chicken I am”. Spring… Chicken, did I actually use those words? Well I couldn’t lie to her and tell her that what I really wanted to do was kick everyone out, get into a nice cosy onesie, put my feet up and watch the telly. Or be around people who physically make me happy and we talk about actual interests. Okay, stop smiling to yourself, they think you’re weird now. Stop smiling! Oh God. Awkward.
Is it too late to run? How about a family emergency, like my cat just died. Maybe that’s too obvious. No. Just sit here and be normal. They’re normal people just like you, except they can hold an actual conversation and don’t stumble on their words and don’t say stupid things like “okie dokie karaoke”, even though I find that saying quite amusing. Okay stop, you’re smiling to yourself again, stop it now! “What’s got you smiling over there? Are you texting your boyfriend?” My reply being, “me? Boyfriend, no I don’t do boyfriends”. “Oh, so you like girls then?” My reply then being, “girls? No, never? Not that there’s anything wrong with girls, we’re all girls, I don’t fancy any of you. Not that you’re not pretty or anything, but I don’t fancy you”.
There I go, stumbling on my words, and I don’t stop there. Of course not. “Because, you know, males and females are so different. I do like men, not any women though, I’m strictly for a man, with manly parts – even though some women are a bit manly, aren’t there? But then on the other hand what do you describe as manly right?” And here comes my ridiculously exaggerated laugh. Why oh why didn’t someone stop me? Now they’re staring at me with blank expressions. Let me just stare back – that’ll help, right? I was wrong. Awkward.
“I actually have to go because my cat Fluffy died, just now, she was so, erm, fluffy. Bless her fluffy…socks? Anyway, thank you for an amazing evening, I mean it really was the icing on top of the cake, we should all get together and do this again soon. Okay bye.” I left before they could even bat an eyelid. I don’t know if I’ll ever improve, and I don’t know if I want to. I’m socially awkward around people who I don’t click with. No biggie, right? All I know for sure is I won’t be doing that again any time soon. Well, I hope not, or maybe I (BANG) How could I just walk into a lamppost? That is so awkward.
Words: Jade Best
Image: Hayley Miller