[Prologue: Stream of Thought Prior to Writing This Post] “Oh gosh, my first post since the blog blew up! What do I do? What do I say? They probably expect me to be funny… I don’t do funny on command — I only do it accidentally! Oh no. All 131 new followers I just got are going to bail when they realize that my own stuff isn’t as clever as the re-post that brought them here. I’m overreacting. Deep breath. 139 followers isn’t celebrity status. BUT WHAT IF ONE LEAVES? WHAT IF THEY ALL LEAVE? IT WILL MEAN I’M NOT A GOOD WRITER AND AHHHHH I CAN’T HANDLE THE PRESSURE HERE AND… Just shut up and write something already.]
In one week, I’ll don an oversized polyester robe and a silly-looking hat and receive the piece of paper that will apparently certify me ready to enter Grown-Up World.
While I have dutifully fulfilled my 140-something unit requirement, there’s some pretty basic life skills I still lack that college couldn’t teach me.
Stuff like, oh, say, going to the mall.
The trip started off well. I needed a sharp-looking outfit for my several job interviews next week. Gone are the days of being 13 and hitting the mall because OMG Old Navy has the cutest babydoll tees and OMG the mall is like the coolest place everrrrr; this was a definitively Grown-Up mission.
But then stuff happened. Stop #1: Banana Republic. Somehow I didn’t see the sales desk five feet to my left and went charging to the front of the store intending to pay for my blouse, but probably looking like I was about to shoplift. At my roomie’s correction, I had that awkward moment where everyone just saw you heading confidently in one direction, but then you have to stop abruptly and turn 180 degrees to come sheepishly back the other way.
Stop #2: Ann Taylor. “Would you like me to start a dressing room for you?” Why yes, that would be great! “Okay, I put the skirt on the door so you can tell which one is yours.” Decide that everything else in the store is either too matronly or too expensive. Go to the dressing room, find the right door. Push the door. Nothing happens. Try turning the handle. Nothing happens. Stand awkwardly at the entrance of the dressing room until Friendly Sales Girl notices my helplessness. Can you open the door for me? Friendly Sales Girl goes to the door, pulls the handle, and the door swings open. Cue facepalm and embarrassed laughter.
Stop #3: JCPenney (where I scored a fantastic skirt, by the way). I stood patiently behind the gentleman currently being helped at the customer service desk. After a few moments, the sales lady looked up at me with a slightly judgmental (I felt) expression. “The line starts over there,” she said, gesturing to a sign that very clearly read “Customers Please Wait Here.”
Later, back at my apartment, I was sitting sideways in an armchair in the living room with my legs draped over one arm — probably my first problem, since that’s a decidedly Not-Grown-Up way to use a chair. At one point, I moved to rest my legs on the chest that serves as a side table, but without checking whether the top had been cleared off. I knocked a half-filled cup from a few days ago onto the carpet (not cleaning: also decidedly Not-Grown-Up, although to be fair, the cup wasn’t mine). In my scrambling to pick the cup up, I also knocked over the Coke I’d gotten on the way home that was sitting on the floor beside me. Using the floor instead of the coffee table may well have been yet another decidedly Not-Grown-Up thing to do.
Sadly, this is a fairly typical day for me. Usually I’ll also throw in dropping half-a-dozen things — sometimes breakable things — or falling at least once on a flight of stairs or hitting my head on a wall or something. I am plagued with clumsiness that I just can’t seem to grow out of, and I guess the world will probably be a safer place if I get one of the desk jobs I’ve applied for, which will keep me safely planted in a chair 40 hours a week.
But before that, I’ll just have to hope I make it across the stage at graduation without falling.
[PS- Two years ago, I sprained my ankle opening a gate.]