Mouth Full of Pickle

So, let’s say you’re passing that table at work where they put the leftovers to catered lunches you weren’t invited to. And let’s say you espy a pickle and you quickly throw the entire thing into your mouth. And then let’s say as you’re walking away chewing this pickle, you intersect your boss’s boss’s boss (who is not a bad looking lady, as high-powered executives go, and who makes you kind of nervous when she’s nearby).

And when you grunt “hello” through the half-masticated brined cucumber, how do you respond when she says, “Oh, you have a mouth full of pickle.”

Probably not by saying, “Happens all the time.” 

Alas, this is the hand that has been dealt.

I may have indecipherably mumbled this. And it’s exactly for occasions like this that I half-mumble almost everything I say. My mumbles are intentionally protective. I fully acknowledge that I usually have no idea what the hell is about to come out of my mouth. So as much as I can, I try to render it unintelligible.

On such occasions when I do say something asinine, either I’m asked to repeat myself, thereby getting the grace to try again with a rhyming alternative (in this case, it would have been “Pickles are very fine”). Or if they don’t ask me to repeat what I just said, I hopefully leave them with some uncertainty about what they thought they heard me say.

And this was the hope I clung to as I scooted away from the silent awkward intersection, eyes straight ahead. To my glorious future.

When I relayed this story to my ladyfriend, she said, “Well at least it wasn’t ‘I bet you know what that’s like.'”

And true, it could have been worse. But not by much. Either way, the unseemly was suggested

It kills me that I felt like I had to say something when I could have just left it. I mean she started it with the mouth and the pickle thing, which made it awkward immediately. And then feeling empathetic that she caused the unintended awkwardness that I’m usually guilty of, I took it upon myself to smooth things out. I felt obligated (probably my middle-child peacemaker reflex) to make it all better with something cute and self-deprecating.

But instead I make it even worse by further building on her unintentional double entendre to such an extent that it is clear we are well beyond gherkins and dills.

Or maybe she didn’t understand me at all.

Either I am so fired or I’m not. Or I can expect a jar of Claussen’s from my Secret Santa.

I’m angling for the jar.

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1 Comment

  1. […] Eric Bescak biked to work every day this week and wrote about it. He also got himself in a little pickle with his boss’s boss’s […]


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