You are going about your normal daily routine, perhaps it’s sitting in class or going to a meeting at work and all seems well. People talk to you and look at you odd, but overall everything seems fine. Then as you’re walking down the corridor you happen to look down and notice that you’re completely naked, not a thing is on. And then you wake up.
The naked dream, we’ve all had it – well, most of us have. Psychologists and dream analysts usually say that it indicates you are feeling exposed or uncertain about an upcoming plan. Personally, I just think it’s our mind’s way of screwing around with us. At any rate, it is an embarrassing moment all in its own and in the privacy of your own head.
“Hello, I’d like to apply for the mortified job…”
I was twenty-two years old and went in to apply for a job at Harvard Pilgrim Health in Harvard Square. I would hopefully be a medical assistant and for the interview – was dressed in my best suit and tie. The truth was, I was young and really wasn’t sure what to do with my life (because I’m so certain now…). So, I walk in and decide to hit the restroom before I actually go into the office space. Then I washed my hands, leave the restroom and go to the reception desk to let the human resources person know I was there.
A few minutes later I was called into the conference room where the human resources woman carried out the interview, I acted professionally, answered all her questions and I stood up and shook the lady’s hand. Then as I was leaving she giggled, I turned to see what was funny and to my dismay she was looking at my rear end. I turned to try to see what she saw and there, and hanging from my suit pants was a string of toilet paper about six inches long. Embarrassed and shocked, I pulled the paper from my pants and (to this day, something I’ll never understand why) offered it to the HR woman. She burst out laughing and then replied “Um, no thanks.” to which I also laughed and crumpled it up and threw it in the nearest trashcan.
Surprisingly I actually got the job, perhaps more for comic relief than actual talent.
Why is it embarrassing?
Remembering back to that day got me thinking. Embarrassing things happen every day, but the real question is – What makes it embarrassing?
Embarrassment is basically your own realization that you are doing something that does not conform to social standards within your area. Now, notice I say within your area.
What is socially acceptable in some areas may not be in other areas. To date I have not yet found a society that feels it is socially acceptable to walk around with toilet paper hanging out of your pants, however some communities do allow nudity. In some parts of the world, it is considered a compliment to belch or pass gas where in most of the United States or United Kingdom communities, it’s generally not an accepted behavior and thus becomes an embarrassing event.
Age also has something to do with it. My son is embarrassed when I give him a kiss as I drop him off at school. Yet I, being in my mid thirties have absolutely no level of embarrassment to kiss my father on the cheek. He is one of my dearest friends. So my question to all of you is:
What’s the most embarrassing thing that has happened to you?