People are absurd. Life is awkward. Don’t forget to laugh. 

Someone in my office apparently quit her job several months ago without telling any of her coworkers. In fact, we have heard nothing from her in seven and a half months. Today, on the day that she finally came to pack up her cubical, the office manager asked everyone to offer her cheerful well-wishes on a bright floral greeting card. Because apparently that’s what you do when someone stealthily exits her place of employment.

“Dear Gerta, This is awkward. {smiley face; ex oh ex oh.} -Angelica.”

Human social behaviors and rituals can be so baffling and cringeworthy that they are funny. The entire career of Jerry Seinfeld, a comedic cultural icon, was built on the uncomfortable absurdity of our species.

And many people avoid aspects of social living because social living is, objectively, as awkward as walking barefoot through jello while surrounded by those horrifying close-up mirrors that they have in fancy hotel bathrooms. Shudder. Anyway.

And, if you are a tad socially anxious, to the point of avoiding social discomfort and potential judgement  (read: if ordering a pizza from a stranger gives you heart palpitations), I am not going to talk you out of the fact that absurdity may occur and social discomfort may ensue. I’m just here to say, in an effort to maintain perspective on the non-catestrophic nature of such discomfort, please please please, don’t forget to laugh.

Like this:  A fellow traveler on the airplane I am on (I’m blogging over KaNsas at the moment) just sat down and I thought- Good gawd; it’s John Snow with a shiny man-bun, only he’s not wearing a big animal pelt cape and wielding a sword; he’s wearing a purple t-shirt from H&M and looking at nature art on his iPad mini. And then John and I shared a magical moment ordering Coke Zero from the flight attendant, at the same time, in perfect, synchronized, unity; only he had an eargasm accent and I had a Turdy-point-buck accent (Click the link; you know you want to.) and then we both looked at each other with terror in our eyes because there was sudden violent turbulence, and I turned redder than Robb Stark at his wedding; Not because I was swooning for the hot Australian half my age, but because my hand was on the purple bicep of said Australian and I was squeezing hard. (I usually fly with my husband and physical contact instinctually calms my nerves. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.)

John smiled and said “no worries,” like the casual millennial that he is, and then he truly evened the social playing field by laughing with his mouth open at The Simpsons on YouTube while eating a vegetarian sandwich made of plain mayo and onion slices.

Hot enough to pull off this ensemble and publicly adore Bart Simpson.

And of course I purposely won’t  look at John Snow for the rest of the five hour flight; In fact I will spend the next three hours plastering my body against the window, as far away from his purple bicep as possible, sweaty palms to the glass and head down like a hooker on an episode of Cops.

Real. Life. is. awkward.

And that’s ok.

Don’t forget to laugh.


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