The Six Sins of the Socially Awkward Situation.

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Socially awkward situations are no friend of mine. They are, well, toe curlingly awful. I am sure if you, sitting there right now, cast your mind back, you will not have to travel far before one pops up from your memory.

Lets take a look at 6 common sins that one can easily make and investigate some strategies that may ease your horror.


Introducing people to each other when you do not know all of the names. This is one of my biggest hurdles. You are at a function or something, talking to someone who you clearly know but whose name has momentarily escaped your brain. Someone else joins you in conversation. They stand awkwardly, looking at you, waiting for an introduction. You can either say something ineffective like “Surely you two know each other?” and pray to the gods of memory recall that they kick into gear fairly swiftly. Or you can excuse yourself and go and get another canapé.

Or you can stand up tall, look at your friend with no name and say, “I am so sorry. I forgot to take my medication this morning and I have completely forgotten your name.” Do this. And move on quickly to the next topic of conversation.


Rage. All sorts of rage can occur these days. Road, phone, walking. You name it; there is a RAGE factor. Now I have been known to occasionally cause a road rage incident and the most effective way to defuse the situation is to blow the rager a kiss. A big one. They either burst into laughter or burst a vein in their forehead. Either way, do not get caught up in it. Just move on.


Sometimes you go to use the ladies room at an event, only to find the line is really, really long. And next to the ladies room is the men’s facilities that no one is making use of. I am one of those impatient people when it comes to emptying my bladder so I am often found in the gents when the ladies line is too long.

The problem arises though, when you are making use of the latrine, when a few men folk come in to wee in the public trough. And then a few more come in. And you have finished your business, waiting patiently for them to all leave. But they do not.

Take a deep breath, open the door and greet the men folk with a chipper “Top of the morning to you fellas!” and exit like you should have been there the entire time anyway.


One-upping. You know those hideously painful people who like to prove that they are better than you in every way? You might say something like “I had the most god-awful headache yesterday…” and they go on to say “I had a cat scan yesterday and it turns out that I have brain cancer and so now I must have chemo.”

You might say, “I need to buy a new car, but it is out of the question at the moment. I am so skint.” And they may say, “See these shoes? Picked them up on the side of the road and now they are my best shoes ever. And this jumper? Found it on a bus….”

One-uppers are boring and you cannot beat them.


Regifting. You need a very good memory to regift effectively. I have a dreadful memory, so I don’t even try. You need to be VERY confident if you choose to regift. Or be prepared to be shamed publicly. Is it worth it? Your choice.


The kiss. Are you a kisser? Like, do you kiss someone who you just met because they lean in towards you because they did not hear your name and are about to ask you to repeat it, but you re-interpret their move as HOLY COW! WE ARE GOING TO KISS AND WE JUST MET! And then you plant one on them, but really they just are a little hard of hearing?

That. Just laugh. Or be all French like and plant one on the other cheek.

And maybe give them a firm yet gentle squeeze on their buttocks.

Socially awkward situations are there to test us, to mortify us and to remind us that no matter how cool you think you are, you just aren’t.

 How do you rate your social manners?

Are you smooth, or a klutz like me?

Got a story to share? I would love to hear it!