'Matter of Laugh or Death,' the award-winning humor column
By Bill Dunn
Interesting observations on this thing we call life
(appearing each week in the Republican-American newspaper, Waterbury, CT)
MOST EMBARRASSING MOMENTS
They say Mankind is the only animal that blushes. Of course, we are also the only animal not covered in fur (as long as you don’t count my brother-in-law, known affectionately to all the relatives as “Uncle Hairy”). Maybe we just don’t know if other animals blush because their skin is hidden by all that fur. Or, more likely, maybe we human beings blush because without a coating of fur we instinctively feel naked.
Speaking of being naked and blushing, a good friend of mine recently told me of a very embarrassing incident. Before telling his story to me, he said, “Please don’t mention this in that goofy column of yours.” I assured him that his secret would be safe with me.
Anyway, here’s what happened: my friend was visiting some of his old drinking buddies in New York City, and after spending the evening visiting various taverns, he returned to his hotel room at about 1 a.m. Because he was covered with that unique aroma known as “guy stink” (a combination of stale beer, cigar smoke, chili dogs, and sweat), he decided to take a shower before going to sleep.
At about 3 a.m. he woke up needing to use the bathroom. He looked around the dark hotel room and saw a light under the edge of the door. Thinking he had left the light on in the bathroom after his shower, he shuffled toward the door, then shielded his eyes from the bright light as he opened the door and walked in.
At the same moment he peeked out from behind his hand to see where the toilet was located, he heard the door click shut behind him. That’s when he realized he was standing in the middle of the hallway without his room key—and more importantly, without a single stitch of clothing. Instantly, two things happened: he sobered up, and his bladder informed him that he really needed to get to a bathroom…now!
My friend told me the next thing he did was tiptoe down the hall toward the elevators where he used the house phone to call the front desk. I know, however, this is not the next thing he did. I’m certain that before he went looking for a phone he first spun around and began clawing on the door, frantically hoping his hands would be miraculously transformed into the powerful fore claws of an aardvark. Or at least that’s what I would’ve done.
After the night clerk at the front desk stopped laughing, he promised to send up someone with a master key. My friend explained it took a full 15 minutes before someone finally arrived. Apparently the hotel staff had a prolonged discussion about exactly who’s job description contained the phrase, “Let half drunk naked guys back into their rooms at 3 a.m.”
My friend told me it was by far the longest 15 minutes of his entire life. He is still amazed he didn’t drop dead from embarrassment before the hotel employee even showed up—not to mention when the employee finally did show up, his face contorted in suppressed laughter.
This story got me thinking about embarrassing situations. But before I relate some of the embarrassing things that have happened to me, I’d first like to hear from you. After all, I’ve discovered over the years that those of you who regularly read this column are bright, witty, fun-loving, and adventurous. But most of all, you are…how can I phrase this? You folks are wacky!
I’m sure there must be some very interesting stories out there; maybe even some stories where embarrassment occurred while fully clothed. (Although it’s probably not a coincidence that the last two syllables of the word “embarrass” are what they are.)
So please contact me at <email@example.com> with your most embarrassing stories. I’ll include them in a future column. Unless, of course, you’d rather that I not tell anyone about it. As always, your secret will be safe with me. Really.
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