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This is a question Foot in Mouth Syndrome II

Have you ever said something and wished the ground would open up and swallow you? Tell us your tales of social embarrassment.

Thanks to BraynDedd for the suggestion

(, Thu 16 Aug 2012, 14:12)
Pages: Popular, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

This question is now closed.

What not to say for a quiet life....
So, about 6 or 7 years ago now, I found myself working for a logistics company in their shiny new head office. It was indeed a lovely building, and I was to be working as a part of their internal helpdesk staff, tasked with resolving all of the minor quirks and queries that our 2000+ users had around our choice of IT systems.

Being fresh through the door, I spent my first week or two being inducted into their setup, shadowing the rest of the team as they took the calls and worked through them to a reasonable solution. All in all, it was a pretty nice gig. Mornings were a little more stressful due to the flood of people who couldn't remember passwords, but apart from that, it was a really enjoyable entry-level job.

As I got into it, and was soon to be promoted to having my own desk, computer and phone (head-spinning times indeed!), I had only to visit one more of the established team to pick up a few bits on one of the more obscure systems. I had been warned previously that he could be a little bit quick-tempered and prickly, but it shouldn't be a problem as I'd only be with him for a couple of days.

So, the day dawned and I went and sat beside him, plugging my phone into the 2nd headset point so that I could quietly shadow his phone calls whilst taking notes. Our other new guy was also destined to be sat there for the same period of time, so there was a sense of solidarity there as our difficult days started.

As I had been warned, our instructor's mood went from tepid to foul within 4 phone calls. Every customer that he hung up from was a twat, every problem stupid and caused by the person who had made the call. I have to admit that I was finding it hard to keep my 'keen-as' attitude amongst all of his complaining and was trying to find a way to lighten the mood. I had noticed a single photograph adorning his cubicle wall, and after a particularly bad phone call, I pointed to it and said:

"Hey mate, what's this picture of? Is it you dressed in drag?"

As soon as I spoke the words I knew how utterly wrong I was. It was obviously not him now that I'd looked at it for more than 2 seconds. It was obviously just a slightly blokish looking woman.

He never looked at me, but he stopped his rant-mid sentance. After about 15 seconds, he looked at the picture and coldly replied.

"Actually, that's my Fiancee."

I worked my mouth a couple of times, wondering how I could undo this train-wreck of a sentance. My fellow trainee was sat with tears of silent mirth rolling down his cheeks at my misfortune. Without ever knowing why, I leaned in towards the photo, looked at it for a few seconds and stammered my follow-up

"N-No, that's impossible. It can't be a woman."

My fellow trainee's mirth was no longer silent, and I had made my first great foe in that particular job.
(, Fri 17 Aug 2012, 2:39, 13 replies)
I almost got away with it.
I was chatting to the female half of a nice young professional couple who had just moved in next door. She had taken in a parcel for me and I was reclaiming it, trying to act like a normal person - chit chat and not being a complete tit, that sort of thing. I was apologising in advance for the amount of noise that our two kids make, trying to make it sound like I was joking, before the subject moved on to jobs. Her partner was a surgeon and she worked at Great Ormand Street Hospital. "Oh right", I trilled, "so you'll be used to the sound of crying children."
(, Fri 17 Aug 2012, 21:00, 2 replies)
I watched an ex do this one, and it was fucking excruciating
Loads of us miserable in a pub after a glamorous and beautiful friend had died very suddenly and unexpectedly from a brain tumour –  collapsed on new year's day, three day coma, then died. Her young sister was obviously very very upset. She was trying to console herself with the fact that, had it been diagnosed early, it would have just been a torturous and horrible few months of chemotherapy before her sister would have inevitably succumbed.
“Yeah,” laughs my girlfriend. I recognised that scoffing introductory ‘yeah’ and immediately went tense. It always meant an ill-conceived torrent of shit was about to fall from her gob.

“If all her hair fell out ….”

Christ no please just stop there this is horrible just please please please close your fucking mouth please shutupshutupshutup

“... SHE WOULD PROBABLY HAVE KILLED HERSELF ANYWAY!”

Fucking hell.
(, Fri 17 Aug 2012, 12:40, 12 replies)
cock and balls
came home from work to tell the wife that I needed to go to Amsterdam the following week on business.
"you going to bring me back something nice?" she asked
"STD!" I volunteered brightly

she didn't see the funny side
(, Fri 17 Aug 2012, 13:21, 3 replies)
I was young and I meant well.
That's my defence for one of the more excruciating experiences of my life. I was in a supermarket queue, being served by a young man with apparent learning difficulties and boss-eyes - 'one eye looking at you, one eye looking for you', as my nan used to say.

Being young and well-meaning, I was extremely conscious of not treating this young man any differently because of his crossed eyes, slurred speech and occasional twitch. Indeed, I fairly brimmed with the over-riding need to appear friendly and approachable. So when the young man addressed me, I couldn't wait to reward him with a dazzling smile and immediate response.

'You busy today?' he asked as he scanned my goods. 'Oh no!' I said brightly, 'after this I'm going straight home to put on my dinner and sit in front of the telly!' He gave me a bit of a look through his thick glasses. I smiled sweetly. There was a pause. 'You busy today?' he asked again, this time more pointedly, his head shaking a bit. Poor lamb, I thought. 'No,' I said, more loudly and clearly, 'I'm going to cook my dinner and watch a bit of telly. Not much on tonight!' and I gave a short laugh to emphasise the general relaxed nature of the evening.

There was a longer pause, during which I thought I could detect a look of awkwardness on the young man's face. Nonetheless, I pressed on, buoyed by my goodness and generosity of spirit. "How about you?" I asked, meaningfully. "Are you busy today? You certainly look busy! Ha ha ha!' He didn't respond; he just looked in my direction, his head shaking slightly as he scanned another item of shopping,

'How's Tony?' he eventually asked, speaking rather loudly (almost desperately) for someone who was in such close proximity to me. Oh dear, I thought. They really shouldn't have put him on the till if he's not... all there. 'Oh, well, I don't know Tony', I replied slowly, still smiling, as if to a simple child. 'He's fine,' said the woman in the queue behind me, the woman this poor man had been trying to converse with for the past few minutes, the woman who was now forced, in the nicest possible way, to ignore and talk over me in order to bring a halt what I suddenly realised was an excruciating moment for all concerned.

They continued their conversation as I, head down and cheeks crimson, tried desperately to pack my bags in the most nonchalant way possible for someone who was burning with shame. The shame I feel now... Oh god, the shame...!!
(, Sun 19 Aug 2012, 15:22, 5 replies)
At work.
I approach someone that I dont know that well, and go "Have you got this weeks roster on that computer? Who am I working with tomorrow?".

She goes "It's Fred Bloggs" (name changed obviously).

I roll my eyes and she asks why. I run blindly into a situation by replying "Because he's a wanker".

She says "Do you know who he is?"

I wince and go "Your husband?"

I was right. And now I have to work with both of them.
(, Fri 17 Aug 2012, 13:48, 3 replies)
No idea where this came from
I was down in Brighton, just having a good night out. I was on the seafront enjoying a pavement dinner when a group of Irish lads asked approached.

"'Scuse me, mate. Where's a good place to go out round here?" the lead asked
"Well, the best clubs are under the arches on the beach. The cheap slags are up West Street, but the chances of a beating are increased exponentially." I reply.
"We're up for it, no bother there." he says.
"But if you wanted to blow up the Grand Hotel, it's just down there." says I.

It's a good thing they found it funny. I have no idea where it came from.
(, Fri 17 Aug 2012, 22:19, Reply)
A difficult choice
Not so long ago I mistakenly said to my Wife that no one is both really good looking and has a fantastic personality, and that there is invariably a trade-off.

"Which do I have then?" she asked

I was fucked.
(, Fri 17 Aug 2012, 11:56, 6 replies)
Supermarket shennanigans
Whilst queuing at the supermarket tills, I wanted to privately relay a message to my friend. Not wishing to be overheard I typed the message out on my phone and handed it to her.

She then proceeded to read aloud, with the concentration and diction of a 5-year old struggling with new words: "THE. PEOPLE. BEHIND. US. STINK. OF. BOOZE. I. THINK. THEY. MIGHT. BE. GYPSIES."
(, Sat 18 Aug 2012, 18:07, 59 replies)
Trolley Dolly
Have a speedy pea!

A friend of mine who was a trolley dolly, saw a man on her flight who looked miserable, she asked him if he was OK and he said he wasn't because he was being deported. She responded with:

"Oh well, don't worry, you'll be home soon!".

She was renowned for little things like this.......
(, Thu 16 Aug 2012, 19:36, 1 reply)
Feeling Sheepish
I find myself in a group of people who I mainly don't know. The conversation comes around to the fact that they are from various different regions of the UK, and the truth - or otherwise - of supposed regional stereotypes. One particular couple were Welsh, and naturally we were talking about the differences between the Welsh and the English.

All was light and happy, until I innocently commented that the guy looked, to me, very Welsh - in fact, I said, he really reminds me of Rhys Ifans.

Stoney silence and stormy looks ensued. I swear a stylus was dragged across a jukebox record. All eyes were upon me, and they weren't friendly.

Turns out that what everyone knew, except me, was that Rhys Ifans was the girl's fairly recently ex-boyfriend...

I'll get me coat.
(, Thu 16 Aug 2012, 15:26, 2 replies)
Stoke Bruerne Waterways Museum
When I was a young teacher we often took our classes to museums, in the early eighties, before the National Curriculum. We embarked upon a journey to the above mentioned waterways museum with 40 odd children, including our hearing impaired unit, which included our profoundly deaf children, all of whom wore bulky crystal radio aids which hung round the neck, and earpieces. Being one of the first schools in the country to use Total Communication methods, we also had a bit of funding to buy brightly coloured earpieces as well.(Nowadays, I shudder to think of the reaction, but they were the latest thing!!)

The plummy voiced lady giving the talk was given the neck mike to address the assembled children and staff, and asked us all to move back from the edge of the canal. All obliged bar Jake, who stood staring at a mallard.

(Cue haughty voice) " I arsked yew to move awei frorm the edge. Are yew DEAF (shouted) or something???"

To which my colleague, a petite blonde young lady whom butter wouldn't melt etc, walked up to her and said, sternly but quietly, an inch from her face, so that the children might not hear.

"Of course he is you stupid woman. What do you think that is in his ears? Fucking plasticine?"

The Boss nearly choked!

We never went back.
(, Wed 22 Aug 2012, 16:03, Reply)
The lives of others.
Naturally, this happened in a pub.

There was a group of us, and we'd all had enough to drink to be loquacious. The conversation meandered around the normal range of pub conversations, and - inevitably - we ended up talking about politics. Or maybe film. Yeah: film. That was it. The Lives of Others in particular: that film from a few years ago about East Germany and the guy who worked for the Stasi.

I started chuntering on about how it was a pretty good film in the main, but a bit obvious in its moral and political stance: the DDR, after all, wasn't all bad. It did a lot right. Fantastic social services and education, for example. Great childcare. You could do a lot worse than live in the DDR.

I didn't know everyone sitting around the table well - only by name. How was I to know that one of them was from East Berlin, that her parents had been openly critical of the regime, and that they'd spent quite a lot of time in a Stasi prison?
(, Thu 16 Aug 2012, 19:42, Reply)
The Bint & the Band
There was this Bint who lived below us in our flat in Harrow.

The flat was the top floor of a two-storey house that had been converted into flats, as had many in the street. Road, Street? It was called Southfield Park, which sounds very grand. So, the flat was the top floor of a two-storey house that had been converted into flats, as had many in the Park.

Anyway, these conversions all share considerable issues regarding sound insulation. In a two-storey Edwardian house, if you're on the ground floor, you can hear stuff going on on the first floor, and vice versa.

Putting a partition wall up on the stairs to the first floor & making two front doors does not address this issue.

Nevertheless, such arrangements are frequently made, creating two flats from one house.

We moved in when there was a very pleasant, and virtually silent, old lady occupying the ground floor. We never heard a peep out of her, and I'm willing to bet she didn't hear any peeps out of us, as we are considerate people & respect neighbours.

Unlike The Bint.

Sadly & inevitably, the virtually silent old lady on the ground floor became a deceased old lady, and the flat was sold to new owners. One of them was the person we came to refer to as The Bint.

Over the years, and there were two of them, we had a fair few run-ins with The Bint over noise issues. Ultimately it all came down to her (The Bint) playing music loudly at night. Actually, it wasn’t music in general. She had a propensity for a, I believe, Jimi Hendrix track. It’s called “Hey, Joe, what are you doing with that gun in your hand”, and she (The Bint) played it loud. Frequently.

That particular rendition of that song, by that artist has a strong, ascending, bass line. It reverberated throughout our flat, and vibrated my breastbone in a most disconcerting manner.

This would cause me to dwell excessively on the possible solutions to The Bint. These possible solutions largely consisted of Bint death.

I later recognised this as stress. Much later.

This went on for a while. There were many situations in which Jimi, & his bass line, fucked me off, big time.

Then there was this one day………

Mrs richardinsydney & I were both home. Weekend. Mrs R was occupied in the living room watching TV. I was in the study doing some study stuff. Thudding base music of the Jimi kind rose up and vibrated my breastbone, of a sudden.

I was distressed by this, but carried on.

After a while, the vibration of my breast bone pushed me over the edge & a red mist came down. The Bint was in the garden at the back of the property with some no-doubt bint-worthy buddy slurping Chardonnay & tonic, listening to this stress-inducing shite.

I curtailed my studying activities & sallied forth to the bedroom at the rear of the property in order to observe The Bint & her compatriot.

I hurled open the window. (Don’t forget, the Red Mist has come down a little earlier, & I am therefore absolved etc…)

Sash window.

Window goes up.

I lean out of the window and SCREAM, yes totally screaming: “Turn it off, Fucking turn it off. FUCKING TURN IT OFF”

I am at the end of my tether. The very end.

I slam the window down: SLAM!!!!

The window shatters: It rains glass fragments down on The Bint & her suitable buddy.

I didn’t expect this outcome, but I’m happy with it: glass on The Bint. Muwahahahaha.

I turn around, and Mrs R is standing in the doorway of the bedroom. She is absolutely horror-stricken.

Three words: “It’s not her”

Turns out next property over they had a live band for a birthday party.

Fuck. Sort that one out.
(, Wed 22 Aug 2012, 23:30, 24 replies)
When I went out with a girl fom Wisconsin
Her mother and brother came to visit us in Glasgow. One day was set aside for shopping so I found myself hungover to the back teeth in Mark's and Spencer, Sauchiehall Street, on a Saturday afternoon. My girlfriend's ma was in the changing room trying on a new pair of jeans. Seeing that I was clearly itching to get this shit over with and get to the pub to cure my hangover my bird tried to hurry her mum up asking her "how are the jeans mom?"

Piece of advice for Americans, don't shout "they're too small I can't fit them over my fanny" in Glasgow.
(, Wed 22 Aug 2012, 1:21, 1 reply)
A friend of mine recently had her husband of 10 years,
the father of her three children, leave her for a man.

She probably wasn't the person I should have asked the question 'Hey, do you reckon Ian Thorpe is gay?'.

To her credit, after a slight stunned pause, she laughed and pointed out that her track record of knowing things like that wasn't the best.
(, Mon 20 Aug 2012, 14:33, Reply)
"Oh no, it's not for bumfun, she's just a bit tight!"
I blurted out nervously to the girl on the checkout in response to her single eyebrow raise as she scanned the lube.

My girlfriend didn't talk to me all the way home.
(, Mon 20 Aug 2012, 14:09, 10 replies)
When John Paul 2 died, they set off the air raid sirens in Warsaw
having only been living here six months, I had no idea what was going on (I didn't watch the local news) and figured something awful might be happening, so I phoned the girlfriend just to remind her how much I loved her.
"Why are you doing this?" she queried, and I told her the Russians must be invading again or somesuch.
"No, you fool, the Pope just died," she scolded, to which I let out a relieved "thank fuck for that."

The line went dead.

this is a repost because I'm a lazy cunt
(, Mon 20 Aug 2012, 13:22, 2 replies)
Love is...
I'd been married to my first wife for about a month or so when her mum died of cancer.

Even though we were newlyweds, it wasn't the happiest of times, of course, and she really struggled to get through it. So, to bring a little bit of cheer to my wife's life, I cooked a really nice meal at home. She appreciated it, but still couldn't shake off this gloom - not even for a night.

We were both clearing up in the kitchen after the meal and the shell of the watermelon I'd served as part of the meal was sitting on the worktop.

In an impromptu attempt to make her laugh at my stupidity, I put it on my head, like a helmet, and shouted "Oh no, I've got a melon-oma!".

I hung my head in shame the second I realised what I'd said and she ran off upstairs in tears, leaving me to finish the clearing up, alone.
(, Mon 20 Aug 2012, 1:04, 3 replies)
Read & Take Heed
This is a pearoast from a QOTW a while back called 'Tactless'

(To say my foot was firmly lodged in my mouth would be an understatement)

I was in the passnger seat driving with a friend along Baker Street. It was a very hot day and everyone had their windows open. Stuck in traffic, as one tends to be along that street, the lanes on either side would occasionally move a bit quicker.

To the left of our car you could hear horses feet, I turned to see a horse drawn carriage pull up and I made eye contact with quite a stunning bride. She was very beautiful, all fairy tale dress and flowers.
So, of course I just had to say “congratulations, you look very beautiful”. She demurely smiled and thanked me, and so the bloke at her side (in my defence at LEAST 30 years her senior, although my conscience may be exagerating here) turned to see who she was speaking to “Congratulations, sir, you must be very proud, your daughter looks stunning”

“I'm not the Father, I’m the Husband”

God, I really wonder if I just totally ruined their day...neither looked even remotely amused..I was so shocked, my friend had to close the window remotely as I was just frozen with embaressment
(, Fri 17 Aug 2012, 12:26, 14 replies)
Dig deeper
I work in quite an upmarket furniture store, and as such the majority of our customers are in their 60s/70s, however they do seem to have morphed into clones of each other, same hair, similar clothing.....

I had a regular customer in earlier this year, and I told her "your husband was in last week", to which she replied, "my husband died last year"..... now every ounce of common sense would have caused the next words to leave my mouth to be "sorry to hear that".... what actually left my mouth was "no, it was definitely him"

So, monster munch, it is possible to dig a hole even deeper!!!
(, Fri 17 Aug 2012, 9:15, 1 reply)
First Impressions
She was a radiant Nordic princess on the school bus; I was a nerdy halfling. I noticed she was playing with the ends of her long, blonde hair. I screwed up the courage to approach her, and cheerfully inquired, "Nits?"
(, Thu 16 Aug 2012, 21:20, Reply)
Visiting the Reichstag in Berlin
As a crowd control measure, they let you in through some slidey glass doors. Then you are trapped in a glass room before some other slidey doors open up and admit you to the building proper.

As the door closed, I said "They'll start pumping in the gas any minute now..."
(, Thu 16 Aug 2012, 20:02, Reply)
I couldn't help it.
One night a girlfriend and I were watching TV and Sarah Palin appeared on the screen. I shook my head. "She's insane, but I'll bet she gives a great blowjob."

The girlfriend (also not a fan of Palin) chuckled. "And how can you tell that?"

"Because she's batshit crazy. The crazy ones always give the best blowjobs."

"Oh yeah? How do you know that?"

"Hell, everyone knows that. Just ask your dad."

I parsed that one through myself as I saw the eruption starting to build, and remembered that her mother has been on lithium for the past thirty plus years. "Ummmm... I didn't mean-"

Let us draw the curtain of charity over the rest of this scene.

It's true, though. And in reality I don't regret that line- hell, a corpse couldn't have resisted that one.
(, Thu 16 Aug 2012, 18:01, 15 replies)

I used to work for social services in an area office, and would sometimes help cover reception as we got a lot of drop in 'trade'. One day a middle aged woman and an elderly gentleman came in. She came to the counter, whilst he loitered near the door saying nothing but shaking vigorously, didn't take a doctor to work out which degenerative condition he was suffering from. I took some details from her, filled out a form and went in the back office to hand these details to the social worker who would shortly go and sit with Mrs Jones and her father to see how we could help. As I headed back out to let them know someone would be out shortly I realised I'd spoken only to her and hadn't involved him in the conversation. Schoolboy error thinks I, he's probably fully switched on under all that shaking and what not, I needed to involve him, make him feel part of the process. I deliberately ignored the lady and shouted out across the busy waiting area to her father, I was bursting with pride at how thoughtful I was being as the words " RIGHT THEN MR PARKINSON'S......" came tumbling out. Silence followed, save for the gentle rustling of Mr Jones' coat. It was a silence that spanned a century or so, until I could take no more and ran into the back office and hid. Not my proudest moment....
(, Thu 16 Aug 2012, 16:43, 2 replies)
Don't mention the war!
A German student had come over to our office to learn more about the (German-owned) business. She'd been helping out with documenting something or other, and had asked me to check her English. I corrected a few things, and then got to some error or other that was very minor. I explained "Not wanting to be a grammar Nazi or anything, but...", then realised that probably wasn't the best choice of words. I continued to blather on, and to be honest, she probably thought nothing of it. Still, I felt like a bit of a prick. Nothing new there though.

tl;dr? I mentioned it once, but I think I got away with it.
(, Thu 16 Aug 2012, 15:51, 2 replies)
Staggering silence
After hearing the sad news that one of my colleague (and his wife, natch) had lost their baby I nervously asked 'has he checked behind the sofa?'. Totally mis-read that crowd.
(, Tue 21 Aug 2012, 12:41, Reply)
Over the third top-up of Pimm's
at the Vicar's garden party in July, and somewhat controversially in-between bites of his second round of cucumber and Vaseline sandwiches, Bunty thought it would be a cracking wheeze to wax lyrical on the Professor's Airedale Terrier guide dog and its remarkably coarse hair. Little was he to know that the Major's daughter had been ravished and abducted that very year by a motley band of pirates! The looks exchanged during the silence that followed pretty much confirmed that Bunty had blackballed himself for Club membership that year, so in view of the circumstances we gently took him out behind the boathouse and stove the old duffer's head in with a breezeblock.
(, Tue 21 Aug 2012, 11:34, 5 replies)
Ultraviolet shame
At a goth party, I spotted an old friend standing in the "chill" area, which was lit with black light.

As usual, the light was displaying all the fluff and cigarette ash on all the black clothing and, amusingly to me, the patchiness of my friend's foundation. She is generally a very au naturelle sort of person, so this amused me unreasonably.

Since we're old friends and have a fairly open, rough line of banter between us, I remark that it's funny the things you don't notice in regular light, making pointy gestures at my face.

My friend wore a brittle smile and said something I could not quite hear over the Sisters of Mercy.

Thinking my observation skills unimpeachable, I blathered: "I said I don't think your makeup was intended to be worn under UV!"

She pulled me closer and said calmly into my suddenly burning ear: "I'm not wearing makeup, it's damage from radiation therapy."

"Oh, well, actually that makes it kind of cool in a weird way..." but my quivering shame weakened this rally and she patted me, not unkindly.
(, Sat 18 Aug 2012, 17:47, 1 reply)
Oh dear. I dun a woopsie...
I was doing a software pitch to a room full of around 20 senior execs from Legal and General. It was in their conference suite, and there was a sliding partition wall between us and the next room, where I could hear a computerised voice which was putting me off my stride. Sounded like they were playing around with some voice software. It put me off a bit mid-sentence and I said, "sorry, I'm getting distracted, sounds like we've got a Dalek next door hahaha"

Long stony silence...

"Actually that is our Chairman, he has had throat cancer and uses a voice box"

We didn't win the contract.
(, Sat 18 Aug 2012, 8:50, 8 replies)

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