In which I tell a story that you might find funny or you might just find weird.
Every time I listen to Aisha Tyler’s podcast Girl on Guy, I tell my own “self-inflicting wound.” I like to think it’s as hilarious as the ones her guests tell because my stories are, of course, as well thought out and hilarious as the professional comedians and entertainers she interviews each week. Clearly, I am just preparing for the day when I am funny enough – and you know, famous enough – to be a guest myself.
My self-inflicting wound stories vary. Depending on the time of day, the color of the sky, and the epicness of the previous weekend, my stories swing as far back as childhood when I poured grape juice on my shirt just to make the little girl I had already spilled on stop crying. Sometimes they are more recent, like the infamous night I threw up all over Syracuse. That one’s not a story I particularly love to tell, but if I don’t then my friends do so I might as well own up to my lack of self-control, right?
I was seven, I think, when I threw myself under the grape juice box to stop a little girl from crying. It was the year I went to day camp at Laurel School, and while the surroundings were idyllically filled with shrieking girls in matching shorts and t-shirts, the laws of the playground were already in full effect.
I was never what you’d call “popular.” I think I was always a little shy, a little chubby and a little too lazy to be the kind of outgoing popular girl that had a ton of friends. Plus, I had this really awesome habit of throwing myself into things I liked with fierce abandon whether I was good at them or not. I was always a little too loud and a little too late to hang out with the cool kids.
This hasn’t changed. I still feel like I get way too excited about most things that I’m doing.
The girl in question was someone I haven’t heard from since that summer. Unlike many of the kids I grew up with, she seems to have fallen off the metaphoric planet. For all that she made my young heart quake with fear, she seems to have disappeared into the ether.
You see, I did not selflessly throw myself under the juice box out of generosity of spirit. That little witch was threatening to tell on me. I had splashed two drops of juice – TWO DROPS – onto her pristine white ankle socks. You know the kind. We all wore them in the 80s. Don’t lie. You know you folded yours just as perfectly as I folded mine.
I spilled a few drops of purple juice on her white socks and you would have thought the world was ending. She cried and sobbed and yelled for the counselor. Me, being the incredibly bright youngest child that I was, knew exactly what reaction this was going to get from the people in charge. I was screwed.
So I did what any sane seven year old does. I doused myself with juice to make it up to her.
It didn’t matter. I still got in trouble.
I swear this is still one of my most traumatic memories.
Do you think it qualifies as a self-inflicting wound a la Girl on Guy?