Yet More Ways to Make Me Feel Awkward

Following on from my posts on the 6 ways to make me feel awkward , and, er, more ways to make me feel awkward , today I present you with EVEN MORE WAYS to make me feel awkward. Because there’s apparently no limit to my awkwardness, is there? Or the number of times I can write exactly the same blog post, but pretend it’s totally new and different, apparently. Ahem.

Here’s what I’ve come up with this time…

Force me to be part of a group photo

There is a certain photo of our family which could accurately be titled, ‘7 Greeks & a Ghost.’ I am the ghost, obviously: because when you have skin as pale as mine, flash photography literally makes you glow – and not in a good way, either.

This is why I absolutely hate having my photo taken by anyone other than Terry: and sometimes even by him, really. I just… I don’t even look like myself in photos most of the time. I know you probably wouldn’t think it, considering all of the photos of myself you’ll find either here or on Instagram , but just know that, for every single photo I’ve sent out into the world, there’s at least 200 that didn’t make the cut. AT LEAST.

Post it on social media

That photo I mentioned above? It’s on Facebook, obviously: as are tons of other shots of me looking like one of the Undead, while surrounded by smiling, totally normal looking friends. WHY DO I LOOK SO WEIRD IN GROUP PHOTOS, THO? And why isn’t it illegal by now to tag someone in a photo without their written consent?

Have a conversation about me in another language

OK, so this only really happens on social media, thankfully, but you know when you post something on Instagram or Facebook, and someone leaves a lengthy comment in a language you don’t speak? And then someone ELSE comes along and responds to them, also in that language? Like, what’s the etiquette on that? Are you supposed to just ignore the fact that they’re talking about you on your own page? Are you supposed to put the comment through Google Translate or something, even although you know it’ll translate an entire paragraph of text as “Bang is crap,”* or something similarly nonsensical? WHAT?

(*Actual translation by the automatic captions on You Tube of something Max said in one of his videos . I mean, I know he’s only two, but ‘BANG IS CRAP?’ WHAT?)

Respond to my Instagram Story with emojis only

Every so often, I’ll post what I think is a cute photo of Max, and someone will respond with just the “crying” emoji. No, not the crying-with-laughter emoji – the LITERALLY CRYING one. This doesn’t happen on posts where I’ve said he’s not feeling well, or anything else that could explain why the sight of my child is apparently making someone sad, so why do they do it? Does the crying emoji have some secret, hidden meaning that everyone knows about but me? Did they just hit the wrong emoji by mistake? Because I really, really want to know, but, as with the above, I feel like it would probably be poor etiquette to respond by saying, “And just what do you mean by THAT then?”so instead I just leave it. And wonder about it forevermore.

Call me and make me guess who you are

I think it’s probably obvious from reading my blog that I don’t want you to call me AT ALL, ever. I mean, I love you, but seriously, that’s what Whatsapp is for. If, for some reason, you decide to call, though, please identify yourself at the outset, rather than doing that, “GUESS WHO?” thing some people are so fond of. Because, trust me, I will NEVER guess. But I’ll also feel too awkward about it to just ask, so I’ll probably pretend I know who I’m talking to, and… it just never ends well, really.

(I still remember the time I answered the phone to someone who, rather than just identifying themselves, decided to open with, “Hi Amber, how was your holiday?” I was twenty minutes into a detailed account of my trip to Miami before I realised I was speaking to the man we were in the process of buying our house from. Awkward. JUST TELL ME WHO YOU ARE.)

What makes you feel awkward?

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books by Amber Eve
  • Jamminella


    Conversations at the school gates!! The only thing most parents have in common with other parents is that they’re….parents. Some of them have become friends, but usually when someone strikes up a conversation – and it’s 9am – I just want to run away and get on with my day. I hate the small talk!

    February 28, 2020
    • Oh yes, all small talk should be banned: I feel like getting some kind of ‘Don’t speak to me,’ badge or something ????

      February 28, 2020
  • The crying-emoji thing: I’m not 100% on my emoji etiquette, but… there is one crying emoji that seems to mean “I’m crying because this is so adorable/cute/sweet”. If they’re using the *other* crying emoji, it’s probably just a mistake!

    February 28, 2020
    • Aha! This would explain so much! Emojis are honestly something of a mystery to me, sometimes: like, just this morning, someone went through one of my Instagram Stories highlight and sent me this guy ???? in repose to two outfit photos. I’m just like, USE YOUR WORDS! Why are you shocked by my totally unremarkable outfit?! ????‍♀️

      February 28, 2020
      • Yes, the crying emoji is because whatever it is is too cute to handle! Kind of like “it’s so fluffy I’m gonna die…” ????????????

        February 28, 2020
  • Small talk doesn’t particularly rile me, it’s been part of a few of my jobs, eg, teaching English or library work. But one thing I’ve always hated is being sold “at”. It doesn’t seem to be such a problem here in Scotland, but often when I was browsing in shops in London I would be approached by a young salesperson wanting to help. A very beautiful young woman once “trapped” me as she gave a company rundown when I only wanted to look at the shiny pots of eyeshadow. I didn’t have the heart to ask her to leave me alone and found myself waiting for a chance to hop out of the conversation (I think that’s why young attractive people get these thankless jobs!).

    More seriously, a couple of times I’ve been chatting to someone about a band we both really like (for example). Only for them to come out with something really offensive that they think I’ll agree with. And I feel awkward because we’ve already “bonded” over something.

    February 28, 2020
  • Nicola


    When you’re in a public toilet and sneeze, then a random stranger in the cubicle next to you acknowledges your sneeze with a ‘bless you’!

    Is it not a rule that we do not acknowledge other people in public toilets? I just can’t imagine many thongs more uncomfortable than someone talking to you when you’re both using the loo. It makes me feel icky just thinking about it ????

    February 29, 2020
  • Ellie


    OMG I HATE group photos!! I’m such a shortie so I always get shoved to the front as well

    Ellie xx

    March 1, 2020
  • I always look like a moon-headed ghost on group pictures too. And my hair always looks flat and lank. Honestly, I only ever have my picture taken when I’m feeling okay about how I look and I’m always disappointed with the result.

    March 2, 2020
  • I hate my teeth so the photo sitch is a bit of a minefield for me too. I don’t mind being photographed so much, as long as they let me do my usual closed mouth smile. When they start nagging me to ‘smile properly’ i.e show my teeth I start wanting the Earth to swallow me up. Actually, I want the Earth to swallow THEM up, because I AM smiling properly, thanks, this is how I smile dammit!!

    March 4, 2020