I Am A Terrible Person

I saw a show today wherein the participants were asked to name their most embarrassing moment. I tried to think of what mine would be, and I was surprised that I can’t really think of it. Oh, I’ve done plenty of stupid things, but many were just faux pas. Nothing that would make a great story, or even an honorable mention in Seventeen magazine’s Trauma-rama section.
I can, however, think of a few times I have gotten an absolutely horrible sinking feeling over something I’d done.
The first I can think of didn’t sink in right away as to how much of an asshole I actually am. I was living in Switzerland at 15, my first time away from home for any time longer than a weekend, my first time alone outside of the country ever. I was, of course, pretty lonely, but we were kept busy to keep our minds off it. My best friend from back home, Kameron, took the time to send me a nice long letter, and if I remember correctly — it was either her or my dear friend/current facebook stalker Allison ;) — got most of the class to sign it, along with a sweet note.
No one else got such a letter in the whole 40-student program, and it really made me realize that I was missed and had great friends back home waiting for me.
So what did I do as thanks? Any long-time reader of this website may not be surprised to discover that I grabbed a red pen, corrected all her spelling and grammatical mistakes, and sent the letter back to her with a large “C+” at the top.
I probably thought it was hilarious at the time, but every time I think back on it, it makes me kind of sick to my stomach. Here was a 16-year-old girl who had the discipline to write and send a long letter to a foreign country, and I responded like a jerk. Ugh. Boo to me.
The second worst incident of my life came senior year in college.
Melissa had asked my boyfriend at the time, Sean, to go to her big sorority dance at the end of the year, her last senior year sorority shindig.
I had no problem with it, and I knew they would have a good time, but I hadn’t ever committed the date to memory, as I had nothing to do with it at all.
And Sean, well, was a guy at the time (still is, or so I hear) and didn’t really ever commit anything to memory, and just generally went where he was told.
The night before, Melissa and I were talking on IM, and she offhandedly told me to remind Sean to be ready at 7:00 or whatever. I, however, was having a fight with him about something at the time, and was probably reading some dumb website and only half paying attention to anything that was going on.
Not real productive when I’m fighting with someone.
You can see where this is going.
The next night, my roommates Sean, Chris, Sam, and I all went out to our favorite Thai restaurant for a fun weekend dinner. We got home, and I checked the answering machine.
It was like a movie. The room was dark, and my gut sank deeper and deeper as the different messages from Melissa played: “Okay, I’ll be ready in a half an hour, so you can come on over anytime.”
“I guess you’re not picking up since you’re on the way.”
“We have to leave pretty soon.”
“Okay, we’re 10 minutes late now, but maybe if we speed…”
I was at least mature enough to know I had to call Melissa and face the music.
Okay, I’m lying. She called right as I was online booking a flight to Saudi Arabia.
No, this was my fault. I was supposed to remind Sean, and I didn’t because I was mad at him. The next day, it was my idea to go out to dinner. And technically, I was supposed to have known about the date since the first time Melissa told me, which was probably months prior. (PS — Sean helpfully agreed with Melissa and me that this was 100% my fault and didn’t feel guilty about it for a nanosecond. Go team!)
There was no way to get there late, either, since, in an attempt to curb drinking and driving and prepartying, participants were only admitted off the sorority bus.
Melissa didn’t let me have it as much as she could have, unlike nowadays where I get a lecture if I don’t drive to her house to flip her mattress for her. I think I bought her Anastasia on DVD and some stuffed dog to try and make peace, but really it was probably the worst feeling I’ve ever had. Completely letting down someone I cared about on what was probably going to be a special night.
I still get nervous when people plan things way in advance, and I think probably a big reason I don’t go out much here in LA is that my dinner plans often consist of, “I will be at this restaurant in 10 minutes if you want to meet me there.”
I guess it’s a good thing I wasn’t on that show I watched, because all the other participants would probably have inched slowly away from me and tried not to get too close to me for the rest of the season.
I’ll get back to you if I think of my most embarrassing moment.
Hopefully I can’t remember it because it’s just a hilarious part of my repertoire, and not because it’s some terrible memory I’ve repressed, like slipping on a baby in front of a hot boy and some nuns or something.