Tag Archives: awkward

Pupfessors and unnecessary politeness

1 May

Have we established that I work with a bunch of old men scientists? Well, I do. It’s a lot like being Penny in the Big Bang Theory (hahhahha no, I only wish I looked like Kaley Cuoco), except instead of working at the Cheesecake Factory I actually work at the university and, instead of being an aspiring actress without a degree, I’m actually an aspiring communications professional with a rather good degree. The Sheldons and Kripkes? They don’t care because anything that isn’t science doesn’t impinge on their consciousnesses (hence why I have a job). But they do like my snappy fashion choices and lustrous brown curls, which my inner-feminist mostly only minds on alternate days or when unnecessarily provoked.

Friday I was just about to escape out the double doors and into the stairwell when… “Good evening, Ms. Lincoln.”

I turned around to see the source of the voice I knew all-too-well. (Why did I turn around? I turned around because I am polite. This politeness often gets me into awkward conversations at work. Keep reading.)

“Have a good weekend, Middle-Aged Male Coworker! I like the hair cut!” (Zeus damn it all to Hades. What possessed me to say that? Ah, right. Polite. I am polite. But, then again, wasn’t that unnecessarily polite and bordering on…. shudders …friendly?)

“You do?!” he made a bounding step in my direction. I shrank against the door, seeing my escape escape me. “Because most people don’t, they think it’s too short. But I like short hair for summer, you know? Do you really like it?? Do you?”

“I wouldn’t have said so otherwise (yes, yes I would), and it’s what you like that counts. Bye!”

You see, what they don’t tell you on the Big Bang Theory is that they created characters by exaggerating the individual personality quirks of the overall science research professor archetype. In real life, they each embody a little Leonard, a little Sheldon, a little Raj, a little Howard, etc. I call the characteristic exhibited above the Pupfessor, eager for praise in any area not his specialization.

“Good boy, don’t you look nice after your trip to the groomer?”

You like my hair? You do?! Source: post.barkbox.com

Don’t I know you?

25 Apr

As previously established, I am the most awkward ever. Prior confirmation of this fact does not, unfortunately, stop me from accruing further oh-so-damning evidence. Take, for example, last evening and the case of the Wicked-hot Army Capitán.

While getting changed after work into my fitness “gear”, I had a premonition that yesterday would be a good day to not wear my standard gym uniform of ratty old t-shirt and shorts from high school, so I was feeling fairly cute – my hair was back in a decently attractive ponytail, my pasty-pale legs glowed nicely against the grey of my running shorts, and my shoulders well-displayed by a racer-back top.

Cute, that is, until I walked into the fitness center and stared straight into the eyes of Wicked-hot Army Capitán. Or, straight into his eyes in the mirror, which is essentially the same thing.


Shit shit shit.

You have to understand, WhAC isn’t just a new Gym God for a new gym. WhAC and I met waaaaaaaay back in February in a bar when I was sober and he was not and my friends were making out with his friends while I waited for them to be ready for me to drive them home. (Yes, this was the night of the arm-crossing.)

Another hot one I’d never see again. Better luck next time, Penny!

Then sometime last month I made the connection between the attractive guy from the fitness center who kept looking at me oddly and the mixed-race (Mexican and Native American. DEAR ZEUS, THE CHEEKBONES.) Wicked-hot Army Capitán who courteously got me water so I’d have something to hold and would stop crossing my arms. We’ve since been doing a pretty stellar job of limiting encounters and just all-around pretending to notice everyone but each other.

Then last night he was at the adjustable pulley machine thing… which happens to be right next to the leg lift machine with which I begin my weight routine.


So what did I do? I turned up my iPhone, ignored his existence per previously established routine, and went about awkwardly lifting and lifting and wishing I’d shaved above my knee or not decided to wear shorts.

Awkward enough for you? Just wait – it gets better. Continue reading

Please know that regardless of timing the answer is still “No” – or, A lesson in subtext

6 Mar

Our e-mail system at work has a chat feature. Most of the time, it’s extremely convenient because I can coordinate things silently while also taking notes in meetings. Other times, it’s a pain in the ass.

Awkward Coworker is a person with whom I need to regularly communicate for work reasons, but he likes to use the chat feature to test his skills at quippy banter. Note: I do not believe he’s ever said any iteration of “hello” to me in person. And, since about October, Awkward Coworker has really been earning his name.

BUT BREAKTHROUGH! I’m pretty sure I put a kibosh on the awkward?

Don't speak.

Awkward Coworker: Get anything good from the folks or fiance for the bday?
I’m passive aggressively sarcastic about that boyfriend of yours.
Polly: 16 dvds of the Flying Circus!
Too bad, he’s really great at being a boyfriend!
Awkward Coworker: Every woman’s dream.
Yeah, whatever.
Polly: I can watch International Philosophy as many times as I want now.
No but really, he’s awesome.
Awkward Coworker: Yes, my father the philosophy professor would be in heaven.
You’re the kind of lady I could take home to mom and pop. Are you sure about this boyfriend?
Polly: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F2kAnTZBnTg
So sure.
Awkward Coworker: Damn it Pol, you send things like that and say such quick funny things you make it impossible to dislike you. Pretty unfair of you.

Missed Kisses

22 Feb

There are two possible answers to the WHY DIDN’T HE KISS ME? question:

  • It could be me.
  • He could be dumb.

After a quick survey of the P&P crew, we think the answer is pretty universal and definitely obvious.

In Which Polly was Not Meg Ryan and Blonde Beau was Not Tom Hanks

My first kiss was perfect. I was in Disney World for a high school marching band trip (cool kid right here) and a slightly older, british, tenor sax-playing, tennis god (with terrible acne but let’s focus on the positives) seized exactly the right moment and smooched me under the fireworks in EPCOT. It was better than a Mary-Kate and Ashley tween movie.

Well it had to go downhill from there, right?

This is exactly what we didn't look like.A year later I was a senior and courting a very blonde fellow from the nearby all-boys private school. We made adorable plans to skip half a day of school and take a train into the city. Our time was spent exploring an art museum, enjoying a park picnic, feeding the ducks, attending a musical, and eventually finding ourselves at the top of the city’s tallest building looking out at the sparkling lights during the observation deck’s closing hour. There was oodles of hand holding and longing stares and hinting words but not. a. peck.

Of course longing stares take time and we missed all the trains back home. Blonde Beau’s dad had to pick us up from a seedier part of town. So instead of the observation deck (OR the museum, OR the park, OR the theater) he kissed me in the school parking lot where his dad had to drop me off at my car. Slick.

Circe’s Country Song Gone Wrong

This kiss wasn’t missed in the end, but it probably should have been.

So it wasn’t exactly our first kiss…just the first one we both fully remembered (flashback to 3 days earlier, drunkenly making out at a bar). It was a warm spring evening and we had gone to dinner at one of my favorite restaurants in Aeaea. Croquet Playing Hipster paid: +5 points. Then he suggested taking a walk around the harbor and getting ice cream +100 points (ok, so I really like ice cream…). We walked down by the docks hand This but scarier. With ice cream.in hand for a while, until we decided to sit on a bench overlooking the water. That’s when things started getting awkward.

Conversation became strained as we both tried to determine how close/far we should be sitting from each other, should he put his arm around me, should I lean into him to let him know that would be just fine with me, does my breath smell? (In retrospect, garlic fries may have been a bad first date choice, but if we both ate them, that makes it ok, right?). I felt like I was giving all of the proper signals, and the setting could not have been more perfect.
After sitting there in awkward semi-silence for what felt like an eternity and a half, I couldn’t take it anymore, so I blurted out: “So are you gonna kiss me or what?” Now in my head, this sounded like that cute, playful country song by Thompson Square. In reality, it came off as way too aggressive and accusatory, and I think he was so taken aback/frightened that he finally kissed me so I wouldn’t hurt him.

Penny’s Cuddleless Night

(To be fair: THANK ZEUS NO CUDDLES. I like my space.)

Wayyyy back before MMF and I started actually admitting that we maybe sorta wanted to try seeing each other I accompanied him to a cocktail attire work holiday party and… spent the night.

MMF: Ok, well, here’s the bed and the bathroom is there; I’ll take the couch, obviously.
Penny: You do not have to sleep on the couch. Continue reading

Just dig the hole a little deeper, Polly.

7 Feb

I’m convinced I was just made to be awkward. I’m built to be socially incapable. Evidence:

Oh gee, isn’t it wonderful that I’m leaving the building for lunch for the first time this week? How pleasant. I really must try to not be overworked more often. Hark! My middle aged coworker who is just starting to actually like me (with whom it would behoove me to have agreeable relations as his general approval of me would greatly aid my climb into the upper echelons of this place of employment)  is also waiting for the elevator! 

Grumpypants: Where you going?
Polly: Just home for lunch!
Grumpypants: You live that close?
Polly: Yup, it’s just under ten minutes away.I 100% understand this impulse
Grumpypants: What are you making?
Polly: Heating up some alfredo leftovers!
Grumpypants: mumblemumble with us.

Wait, what did he say? Was it “You should come with us?” or was it “Next time you should come with us?” or perhaps “I’m so glad you aren’t coming with us?” That was probably it. WHAT DO I DO? Hey, Shoulder Angel, Shoulder Devil, whaddya got for me?
PSA: Pardon? I wasn’t paying attention.
PSD: Come back at 2. We’re on our lunchbreaks, Kid. 
RATS. Oh dear. Ok. Just ask a question that works no matter what and get in that open elevator.

Polly: Where are you going?
Grumpypants: Out for pizza.
Polly: Sounds cool. [ELEVATOR DOORS CLOSE]

SHIT. DAMN. Should I take the elevator back up? No. The only thing more awkward than blatantly ignoring a lunch invitation is stupidly slipping myself back into the group plan.
PSD: Well you could have said, “Sorry, didn’t catch that,” you moron.

Just run away, Polly. Run away and never return.

In addition to Shoulder Angel and Shoulder Devil, I also have an Inner Scar. He’s a bitch.

When your ex… Gets fresh with a Best Friend

18 Jan

haha not.

Collegiate alumni event tomorrow evening. Preceded as always by awkward attempts at making plans.


Thebes:  24 hours.

Prepare yourself.

 Penny:  For mediocre wine? I’ve long since become resigned.

Thebes:  I have low expectations – that’s why I rented a luxury hotel room for myself. I plan on retiring from the soiree early on, and luxuriating in my hot tub.

Penny: Not ok!
Polly: I’m… glad he’s talking to people?
Penny: Wait! There is more.

Thebes:  Preferably with a SUPERIOR glass of wine. Because yes, fermented grapes and superheated bathwater are a great combination.

Penny: ?!?!?!??!??!?!!!!!!!!!! http://s3.amazonaws.com/rapgenius/1333909320_72472619_disgusted_gif.gif
Polly: Ok yeah.
“I’m going to be drinking alone in my sweatwater. WhaddaYOUdoin?”
Penny: WHAT DO I SAY TO THIS INAPPROPRIATENESS??? I take it you are against me saying, “Hmmm. Yes, so I saw on your Facebook status to which we all pointedly didn’t respond. Twice.”

Thebes:  Nostalgia? Check. Hallucinations? Check.

 Penny:  Probably should get absinthe for the hallucinations. Never had that problem with wine.

Polly: There you go, deflect from the bath conversation.
Penny: Sweet Jesus I am uncomfortable. Are you SURE that I have to be nice to him this weekend, because I really would rather… Continue reading

Can we just agree

5 Dec

to never discuss personal lives at work? Just not ask any questions? Ever?

Superior – You know what I just bought? This huge box set of all the scores in every Star Trek series and movie. Isn’t your boyfriend into Star Trek?
Polly – Ex… but he dabbled.
where the gossip happensCompany Bigshot – Awkward!
Superior – Oh, sorry.
Polly – Don’t worry, I’ve moved on.
Superior – That was fast. Wasn’t he just here?
Polly – No?
Superior – At the party?
Polly – Well, last year’s Christmas party.
Superior – It was not that long ago. He was at the one in June.
Polly- Nope, that was my friend Effie. But with her long curly hair and feminine figure and SKIRT I can understand how you might make that mistake.
Company Bigshot – More awkward!
Polly – It’s fine… there’s a new one coming to this Christmas party so…
Company Bigshot – So you just move right through ’em, huh?
Polly – Yep. That’s how I do. Can we start the meeting now?

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