Saturday, June 18, 2005

Best Medicine

Oh, I should never, ever read personal ads at "The Onion" while simultaneously taking customer service phone calls. I usually answer the phone, "Welcome to ____! This is Shari, how can I help you?" This time, with "help" from simultaneous reading of a very funny section of this personal ad I said, "Welcome to _____! This is Shari, how can I hate you?" Oh yes my friends, this is what I said. I immediately put myself on mute and slapped my hand over my mouth. What the hell? Amazingly, the woman didn't skip a beat and did not even acknowledge my faux pas.

After I got off the phone I just had to tell a few of my co-workers what I did. This is where the hard part comes in. If something strikes me as funny, I tend to go into hysterics. I laugh so hard that no noise comes from me and tears stream from my eyes. It is absolutely impossible for me to finish a story. It goes something like this,

me: "Oh my god, Shannon! You'll never believe what I did! (laugh, laugh) I answered the phone (laugh) "Welcome to ____" (laugh, cover mouth, dab at eyes) "This is Shari" (convert to silent laughter) "How can I.........How can I......." (more silent laughter)

Shannon: Yeah? What?

me: (silent laughter)

Shannon: ha-ha (uncomfortable silence)

me: (silent laughter for a very long 30 seconds) HOW CAN I HATE YOU! (much more silent laughter and copious tears)

It is truly amazing I was even able to get it all out. Really. Sometimes it has taken me weeks to get an entire story out. At my previous place of employment my co-worker would just roll her eyes and say, "GREAT! We'll never find out now!"

I once did this while on a first date with a guy. I can't even remember what it is exactly that he said. I think it was using an incorrect word or a mixed metaphor. It was funny, but honestly it probably did not warrant my hysterical-lay-your-head-in-your-arms-body-shaking laughter that lasted from the salad all the way through the main course. I remember taking about two bites of my salad and not even touching dinner. I couldn't even ask the waitress to box it up, and by this time he certainly was not going to do me any favors. He ended up being a real jackass anyway.

Someone once told me that my laughter is my defense mechanism. I think it is possibly more like my Achilles heel.


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