Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Heo Posts Everyday Etiquette Tips: Lesson 1~ Grace Under Pressure

When a neighbor comes over and brings you a lovely bouquet of clippings from her garden:

  1. Thank her and make a big fuss over how beautiful the flowers are and how lovely they smell, and how you just adore fresh flowers.

  2. Mean it.

  3. Go get a vase, quickly, so that the flowers are in water as soon as possible because you don't want the stems to dry out.

  4. When choosing the vase, be sure to pick the fat, unwieldy one.

  5. When placing the vase on the counter, try to set it down at just the right angle, and with just the right level of force.

  6. Watch it shatter in your hand.

  7. Feel the largest piece slice your thumb. Assume the wound is not that severe since it didn't hurt that much, really.
  8. Curse like a longshoreman.

  9. Following first aid protocol, hold pressure on wound for 15 minutes so it can stop bleeding.

  10. Repeat, because you must have done it wrong.

  11. Reassure your neighbor, who is blanching visibly.

  12. Make a joke about how accident prone you are.

  13. With your good hand, pour your neighbor a cup of fresh coffee, which you carry from the kitchen to the living room with milk and sugar bowls on the toaster-oven tray because you have no tea tray.

  14. Make a joke about your hostessing skills.

  15. Chat as if you aren't concerned about your still-bleeding hand.

  16. Excuse yourself 'for just a moment' because you're not sure you turned off the coffee pot.

  17. Neglect to mention that the coffee pot turns itself on and off, and might someday knit you a cardigan if you can figure out the code.

  18. Make small talk nonchalantly from the kitchen while you surreptitiously apply butterfly sutures (one-handed! ^4!) to the gash in the digit that -- along with philosophy and art -- separates you from the majority of other wildlife.

  19. Realize that your grasp of philosophy is unimpressive, you couldn't draw a straight line with a ruler, and there are a few apes who have twice as many opposable thumbs as you used to have.

  20. Consider adding whiskey to your own coffee. Refrain. You may be a dolt who is outranked on the evolutionary scale by some poop-throwers, but you're the only person you know in this city whom you can trust to drive you to the ER if you feel faint from the loss of blood.

  21. Ask yourself how the hell you ever got into graduate school with your sad-ass logical skills.

  22. Decide to pour whiskey into cup after all.

  23. Realize that the stench of whiskey is unmaskable with even the strongest roast of coffee.

  24. Pour whiskey out of cup. Rinse.

  25. Deposit still-stinky cup in sink, start over with clean coffee cup.

  26. Hear neighbor heading for the kitchen to check on you. You can't let her find you in here bleeding all over the butcher block in a kitchen that smells like whiskey when you didn't even get to drink the stinking whiskey. Emergency!!

  27. Pop your smiling face out of kitchen.

  28. Distract her with gossip about the neighbor whose house is visible from the window furthest from your kitchen.

  29. Sigh in relief as she moves to that window to contemplate the news and their house.

  30. Wrap 2x2 gauze around your thumb.

  31. Wrap clear packing tape around your 2x2 gauze very tightly so you can drink your damned virgin coffee without having to continue holding pressure on your thumb.
  32. Wrap 4x4 neatly around this, and with appropriate tape.

  33. Discuss local arts offerings for the summer.

  34. Pretend you're excited to see a community theater version of a play you hated when you saw professionals do it.
  35. Feel throbbing pain, and strong desire to reprise your earlier role as longshoreman #1.

  36. Encourage neighbor to go home by subtle shift to the annoyingly didactic.

  37. Act disappointed that she needed to leave so quickly, but do that while walking to the door.

  38. Walk her out, and thank her again for the lovely flowers.

  39. Vodka, neat.

  40. Proceed to local walk-in medical office.


medieval woman said...

Oh god, jeez - I laughed so hard at this! I'm sorry you cut your thumb, but......hee, heee, heeeeee!

meg said...

I think I'll print this out on card stock and carry it in my wallet.

Hope the ow-ow-ow-my-stitches-hurt stage is fleeting!

Bardiac said...

Ouch! You make a painful situation funny, but OUCH! I hope your hand is okay! /comfort

Anniina said...

Hahahahaha! Sorry about your injured digit and best wishes for a quick recovery, but damn you can write!

N.E. Brigand said...

But what was the play?