Before I begin, ‘awkward’ is one of those words, that no matter how many times I look at it, it looks like its spelled wrong.
On the whole, I’ve never had much trouble with social interactions. Regardless of the company I happen to be in at any given time, I can find something to talk about and usually avoid that uncomfortable silence that accompanies socially awkward situations.
That being said, every now and then, I can fail catastrophically, and stick my foot in my mouth up to about the knee.
A month or so ago, we were visiting my in-laws. Usually after dinner time, the wife and I will sit around the table with her two brothers, her sister-in-law and father and have some sort of discussion. The topics range from political, to the completely insane, to reminiscence about our respective childhoods. On this particular night, for some reason, Taylor Swift came up. I mentioned that while I don’t care for her music, and don’t think that she’s really all that attractive, she’s got a voice that I could listen to as it read the phone book.
….Come to think of it, when I mentioned “I don’t think she’s that attractive” I MIGHT have said that her face had certain…rodent like features about it.
Somewhere along the lines of my commentary, I remember getting a ‘You need to shut it- immediately’ look from my wife, so- I figured that someone at the table was a fan that I didn’t know about, so I clammed up and moved on.
Flash forward to this morning, and we’re all having breakfast. The wife is perusing her social media feeds and started to laugh.
Wife: “So apparently, J (Her sister-in-law) was mistaken in NYC yesterday for Taylor Swift.”
Me: (The details of the aforementioned conversation springing immediately to mind) “Oh…really?”
Wife: “Yes, apparently that happens quite a bit.”
Wife: “That’s why I told you to shut up about it back then.” (She obviously remembered that ‘shut the hell up’ look too)
Now, I tried to rationalize my slip up by saying that it was obvious that I didn’t think she looked much like the artist, since if I DID, I certainly wouldn’t have made that comment. Apparently however, a single opinion is not enough to negate several others- especially from strangers who stop her on the street thinking she’s a famous singer.
I’m not sure how to approach this situation from here. When the story of her being mistaken for the celebrity inevitably comes up in conversation the next time we visit- I think I’ll silently and…..swiftly….leave the room.