Why am I so Awkward?!

I’ve asked this question to the powers that be many times, and it only seems to be getting worse as I age.

This may be a common problem, but whenever I am in a conversation with someone I don’t know TOO well, I always get nervous and say something really strange, random, or completely inappropriate.

Here are some of my favourite examples:

  • By chance, I randomly meet Jeremy, an old acquaintance, in Harvard Yard while I’m touring the campus (he’s a current student). At one point he says to me, “It was nice seeing you again!” to which I accidentally and awkwardly reply, “yeah, no problem!” I’m not an asshole, I swear! I don’t think letting you see me again is a gift from me to you!
  • While leaving a message on a teacher’s voicemail, I said “thank you… thank you very much,” and now she’s going to think I talk like Elvis.
  • Whenever I want to say “goodbye” when I’m having a conversation in French, I end up saying “bonjour” and the other person hangs up/leaves before I can say “au revoir”.
  • If there is a situation where I know someone, but don’t really “know” them, but I still feel obligated to say hello, I just whimper a little “hey!” and then try to run away as fast as I can.

The bottom line is that people I don’t know very well make me nervous when they talk to me one on one, and especially when I talk to their voicemail.

But for you fellow awkers out there, my Yale interview was fine, so you still have hope!

In my opinion, my problem is, is that there are too many pleasantries exchanged in the English language and all of them flood my head at the same time and I just choose the wrong one… everytime.

Hi Your Welcome,



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