Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Pedal Extremity in Oral Cavity, SCHTAT!

Here is one reason why I would never ever go back to high school: I didn't know that I had a terrible social disease.

Yes, you heard me, a social disease.

(Which makes me think of Officer Krupke (deeeeear kindly sergeant Krupke!) which makes me thinkof "Maria", which makes me think of cute Riff, which makes me think of Hawaii Five-Oh, which makes me think of hair gel, which makes me think of Elvis, which makes me think of peanut butter bacon and banana samliches, which makes me think I'm hungry. Welcome to the wonder that is my brain, and may help explain the pain that I endured becuase of it when yet a callow youth.)

(By the way - callow is a fabulous word. It means NOTHING like you probably think it does, which, if you're me, you think it means "mean" or "harsh." I'm here to tell you that it does NOT mean those things, but rather it in fact means "lacking in maurity," which describes ME correctly up until the age of, oh, say....NOW)

Getting back to the point, I had a social disease as a young person - yes, I suffered from the shame of "foot in mouth" disease. The special horror of it was that nobody could really TELL I had it until I opened my big mouth and all sorts of awful things came pouring out. Why, if the results of my social disease were visible instead of merely emotional, I'd have been followed by a trail of ugly things, awkward pauses (which in my head right now look something like gigantic gangly puppy feet (get it? "Pawses"?)), and slumpling nuggets of bilious vitriol coated in a hard candy shell.

(Don't eat the last one - it looks pretty but is bitter beyond anything you'd ever experienced before.)

Unfortunately, there were no visible signs of my social disease, oh no. I looked fine, much like any other fresh-faced American girl, and truly WAS fine in most cases, until I started to want to be witty, or until the barely-existent filters clicked to the "off" position due to a surge of hormones or some other physiologic anomaly that would make me say really stupid, really mean, really ill-advised things.

I won't go into exact quotes here, but if you use your imagination, filling it with snippets of that socially maladjusted kid who often barked out inappropriate things at the most wrong time, then you've got a good idea of how my social disease worked for me.

Let me say for the record that as I think back on those times of my life, it's really and truly very little wonder that I didn't date. Not only did I have a social disease, but when I wasn't suffering from a full-on flush of foot in mouth, I was busy practicing sarcasm and cynicism. Those are not the types of things that 15 year old boys really KNOW how to deal with, unless they're practicing to be gay or something, because, as an aside, I've found that the boys I knew back in high school who later turned out to be gay understood me PERFECTLY back then and rather relished the acid-coated tongue. God, we were such bitches, and it was hilarious. I only wish that everyone else thought so.

Oh yes, imagine it. Very tall girl with really weird self-esteem issues sports sharp tongue that, working in concert with a faultily-wired brain, results in verbal blurtage of the most church-farty variety. It hurts to even think about it now.....the dead silences after some "witty" proclamation, the hurt looks of my victims, the burning flush in my cheeks, the angry embarrassment, the salf-castigation, oh I was a fine mess for a number of years.

Until I learned to 1) self edit, and 2) use humor appropriately. Number 1 is far more important than number 2. See, I still have a brain that blurts, and to be party to the mental activity that happens on a nearly constant basis in now simply amusing. I've learned that just because I THINK it doesn't mean I have to SAY it, and even if I DO think it's funny or nicely cutting I should guage the audience before I say something I should only say in front of a room full of drag queens and/or Dorothy Parker enthusiasts. Those folks, they understand.

One good thing about my social disease is that it can't be cured, but it can be used, with a proper amount of self-control. I sure wish I'd known that before I suffered a spell of "pedal extremity to the oral orifice" in front of that cute boy from Woodson I was trying to impress 30 years ago.....

Eh, he probably was a bad kisser anyhow, and I'll bet he would have tripped rounding second (Ha ha! Get it?), because have you seen how shaky his hands get and the way he -

Oh, you say you're his cousin?

Sorry. I'll shut up now.

No comments: