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6 socially awkward moments that everyone will relate to. Prepare to blush.

For all your awkward social whoopsie moments… 

Socially awkward situations: they’re bound to happen to all of us from time to time. Some people attract them like a pervy relo to the pool at Christmas; I am one of those people (the social clutz, not the creep)

It’s not all bad though poppets. Having lived through many socially awkward situations in the course of my daily life, I’ve been able to put together some pretty solid advice on how the rest of you should be dealing with these moments. Read on. Thank me later.

1. The awkward dance/side step thing. 

Right, let’s start with that awkward dance/side step thing that happens when you’re walking down the road towards someone and no one balls up early enough to claim the path.

Neither of you know which way to go, so you and the other person engage in a few minutes of bizarre shuffling side-to-side in a manner that closely resembles the mating dance of Amazonian rainforest birds. The action sees both of you repeatedly step to the same side, then the other side and then laugh at each other like the idiot hyena from the Lion King. How funny. Finally one of you muppets will actually claim the footpath and continue on.

If, like me, your footpath dance card is becoming all too full, here’s my advice: John Travolta that shit. What I mean is, get that Bee Gees groove in your head, squeeze your package (or lady package) into some crotch hugging white pants and strut. Strut like no one’s business.

If you look like you own that path, no one’s going to be challenging you to a concrete cha cha and you’ll get to keep your chick. The key here is just to keep your cool. Just keep going, and if people do in fact come into your path mid strut, have faith that your massive leg flares should sweep them easily out of the way. Fun and function.

Your garlic breathe I mean, you little stink bag.

2. Your garlic breath, you little stink bag. 

Social situation two is more a problem with other people than you, but never-the-less its going to make you awkward so let’s air it out. Your garlic breathe I mean, you little stink bag.

I know, I know, we should all be able to relax of an evening with a crusty piece of GB (garlic bread for you youngens) or a steaming pot of garlic prawns without repercussions, but the laws of the universe say the next day, you’ll find yourself face to face with….. du du dahhhhhhh… A CLOSE TALKER.

You know the kind. They seem to want to stare down your face like they’re trying to find where the words are originating from. So close, that if you stuck your tongue out, you’d probably lick an eyeball.

Look people, there’s no standardised way of dealing with these personal space bandits, but my suggestion would be breathe. Breathe deeply, heavily and right up their nostrils. They deserve it.

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If you don’t know what I’m talking about here, there is a high likelihood that you are in fact, a close talker. Please take a minute to assess your closeness during your next conversation. If you can count someone’s eyelashes, it’s an assault. Not a friendly chat.

This is the socially awkward penguin.

3. Forgetting someone’s name. Obviously. 

Forgetting someone’s name is something we have all been faced with at some point. Picture this if you will: you’re at a party, chatting away to a lovely group of peeps and up comes thing-a-mi-bob from yoga. It’s awkward, uncomfortable, and you find yourself praying you don’t have to introduce whats-a-face to your friends.

My tact for years has been the old ‘do you guys know each other’, followed by a gentle shove of a canapé into my face quicker than you can say ”avoidance.”

During this time, I expect (pray) that either no name or one other of the group has extended a hand and provided an intro so I don’t have to.

If however, your friends are socially awkward too, be sure to reserve a toothpick from canapé hour and poke ’em hard with it.

Poke ’em with feeling- they let you down big time. Then pretend you left your wine elsewhere and hot foot it outta there.

Also get new friends, your current ones are dingbats.

4. The dreaded food in teeth situation. 

While we’re on the topic of socialising and parties, I’m guessing at some point in your life you might eat some food. If you choose to do this around other humans, there’s a high chance you might find yourself in the dreaded food in teeth situation.

There you are having an in depth chat with Sandra from IT about shit knows what, and up pops a friendly little waiter offering up a tempting rice paper roll. Don’t mind if I do!

What comes next is a bizarre tango of chewing, swallowing and teeth wiping with your tongue, while pretending to still be listening to Sandra crap on about her latest internet purchase. But you missed that cheeky bit of coriander, and now it’s bum shuffling its way between your fangs. I’ve heard it said before that you can use your own hair to remove said herb.

That’s right, if you’ve got those flowing lady locks, pull out a strand and voila! Insta-floss.

I’m actually a little grossed out by that myself, so while I’m not a fan of getting all Colgate Sassoon at the next social do, I’ll leave the choice with you. Just make sure you use a strengthening shampoo if you’re the hair flossing kind, cause you really don’t want coriander and ponytail wedged in there together should your strand fail you by snapping mid floss.

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The other option available to you, my little snagglepuss, is to hold onto a toothpick from the next round of canapés (the one you stabbed your friend with, if this is a double awkward day) exit stage left to the nearest ladies or gents (use your discretion) and go to town.

5. The annoying eye twitch. 

Keeping with the face, next I’d like to discuss that annoying little eye twitch that happens. You know, when you’re gasbagging away to someone and your eye decides to rave on like a hopped up teenager on disco biccis. You’re sure that everyone else can see it, because to you, half your face is spasming off.

Rest assured that unless you’re talking to one of those close talkers that we’ve already covered, the other person really can’t see much. Stick some sunnies on (you’ll look like a total prat indoors but your neurotic tic will be disguised) or adopt an awkward face-in-palm-lean-with-one-hand covering your eye until that puppy settles down. You’re still pretty much guaranteed to look like a prat with this one too. A condescending, patronising one who is so bored with the conversation that they need to have a little nap.

In this modern age of technology and interwebs and all that junk, at some point you’ll probably find yourself hitting the ‘send’ button on the wrong mail.

6. Sending an email to the wrong person. I’ve done it, you’ve probably done it. Unfortunately mine was sent to my boss. Instead of my best friend. One I refer to as “bitch features”, the other used to pay my wages. The use of past tense was not accidental.

In this modern age of technology and interwebs and all that junk, at some point you’ll probably find yourself hitting the ‘send’ button on the wrong mail.

Right, at first you’re going to have that blood freezing ‘holy shitballs’ moment. I liken it to the moment in Twilight where the camera zooms in on Bella’s blood turning from a delightful ‘living’ red, to frozen stiff dead blue (much like what I assume happened to her smile throughout the entire series).

Once the send button has been hit, there is nothing you can do about it. It’s done. It’s out there. Don’t waste your time jumping on the phone and bribing some peanut in IT to get it back. Save your dignity for the Xmas party.

Instead, calmly wait for your reply email and once received, reply ‘unsubscribe’. To date, I’ve found this clears out most of the crap from my inbox so I don’t have to deal with it.

I assume the awkward email will then find itself in the same place and we all get to act like it all never happened. For the remainder of the day, find a reason to walk around the office constantly holding a piece of paper. People with paper in their hands look busy and important and on their way to somewhere.

Jacqui is 27-years-old and is a full time mum to two young boys. She lives on Sydney’s Northern Beaches, with her husband, children and a yappy dog that makes her neighbours hate her. Jacqui has studied degrees in Criminology, Psychology and Law but still can’t work out how not to shrink her clothes in the dryer. Jacqui enjoys writing about parenting, news and lifestyle, but finds most enjoyment focusing on light hearted pieces and justifying her obsession with cosmetics in the name of ‘research’.

What are some of your social whoopsie moments?

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