Make embarrassing situations ‘as artistic as possible’

By Joe Palmer

I’ll admit it: I like watching people fall over. It may make me a bad person, but so long as they’re ok, I’ll get a cheap laugh. More than anything, though, I like seeing how people recover from such personal travesties. Some will undoubtedly try to play it off like an intentional gaff, while others simply get up and do their absolute best to pretend nothing happened.

The simple truth is that you always have an audience. Whether you’re walking to class or sitting on a Huskie Bus, there is a chance you’re being watched. Probably not intentionally, but someone is keeping tabs on you. We are all guilty of a little thing called people watching, mainly because it can be a ton of fun.

I, on the other hand, try to make embarrassing situations as artistic as possible. A somersault always helps to give the audience a show, while a line from Shakespeare helps you get a few chuckles before walking away with a little extra pizazz to match your new bruises. Should you actually get a little scraped up, be sure to carry Hello Kitty bandages in your backpack just to lighten up the mood. You’d be amazed at how these little acts can make someone smile.

It’s because of the all-seeing nature of society that I choose to make sure I’ve always got a back-up plan for such occasions. Having a good sense of humor about common mistakes can make your life infinitely better. Shrugging off embarrassment and owning up to a bad call can help keep your day bright even when you’re covered in fresh mud.

Smile when you stumble and be funny when you fall. Anything you can do to make the situation less serious is always a good call. Life is hard, and humor is hard to come by these days.

I suppose the only way to properly end this column is to admit that I have been that guy. I have fallen face first off a 4R bus and I’ve tripped on thin air. I know just how good the grass in DeKalb tastes and how attractive road rash is. In every situation I’ve tried make the best of it, whether by yelling insults at a curb or cursing out a fence for jumping out in front of me. I’ve even found myself accusing a bike rack of attacking me.

Do whatever you can to save face, even when you fall on your face. And in the words the words of America’s favorite fish, “Just keep swimming.”