Growing up you experience two different types of moments that induce panic. There are the “oh shit” moments and the “oh fuck” moments. O.S. moments are when something happens that can ruin your day, but in the grand scheme of things isn’t a big deal like locking yourself out of the house or popping a tire. The O.F. moments are reserved for the more serious situations like getting into a car accident or having the cops come to your house when you threw a party. The best way to gauge the two is the time that needs to elapse before you can laugh about the situation. If it takes a couple days or less it’s an O.S. moment. Anything longer you can categorize as an O.F. moment, and hopefully those moments were never so bad that you couldn’t laugh about it by now. The rest of this post though is dedicated to those O.S. moments that I happened to me all too often while growing up.
Forgetting Homework/instrument/sports equipment
This is the classic O.S. moment, and to clarify I’m talking about when you legitimately forgot you homework, not when you didn’t finish it and need an excuse. Teachers of course were hip to this lie so they just assumed you were lying when you said you had forgotten your paper on the history of Notre Dame Cathedral. After informing your teacher of your error you end up losing the next ten minutes of your life while they bloviate about the importance of organization and responsibility. Looking back on it if I had been able to tether my homework to me each night I wouldn’t have spent so much time at the back of the lunch line.
Forgetting To Return A Movie/Video Game To Blockbuster
How many times did this happen? 150? 200? The answer might be too many to count, and regardless of whether or not you could drive your parents blamed you for it every time. So once you make the announcement at 8:55 that Metal Gear Solid and Blade are about to be overdue the race is on. Inexplicably your parents bark at you to get in the car with them, under the impression that the seconds saved by having the passenger tuck and roll out of the car to drop the movies/games through the slip will mean the difference between paying 8 dollars versus 24 dollars. Every time without fail the entire trip to the store is spent with your parents lecturing you about how they are never going to let you rent from Blockbuster again, and that “at this rate we could have bought the movie for less.” While venting about the scam that is Blockbuster your mom or dad is driving like Bruce Willis through Central Park in Die Hard With A Vengence, forgetting that repairing the car’s suspension will cost more than the late fees. Also and maybe this was just my family, but at least 3 out of 4 times this happened A River Runs Through It or whatever my parents chose to rent was part of the precious cargo as well.
Flaky Internet Connection
It’s hard for youths today to imagine, but I remember all too often having the internet connection at home go down on me at the most inopportune times. For me it was some time towards the end of middle school when teachers permitted internet usage for researching. And like any 8th grader too many times I procrastinated till the last minute before getting my work done. Sure enough every time I needed that internet connection AOL would give me the Heisman say “goodbye” in that annoying voice and claim that their servers were to busy, forcing me to rely only on Encarta to get the necessary information. The spotty connection didn’t only effect homework. There were plenty of times when I was spitting my AIM game on a girl only to have it rudely interrupted because my sister picked up the telephone, which dropped the internet connection. So the next 20 minutes were spent trying to get back online, and by the time I did tumbleweeds were blowing across my Buddy List.
Getting Caught With Your Fly Down
Image in high school is everything to most middle school and high school kids so the last thing you ever want to do is embarrass yourself. If it were feasible I’m confident every teenager would hire a publicist to release a statement and defuse any sort of blow back from a public humiliation. A common one for guys is forgetting to pull up that annoying zipper after going to the bathroom. Once crossing the threshold of the bathroom you’re a ticking time bomb that detonates the moment your best friend sees the teeth of your zipper agape. Once the news is broadcast to the rest of the classroom you feel like you just strolled to 2nd period French wearing nothing but TMNT tighty whiteys. The time it took to get over this usually lasted until the next male classmate left his down, which most of the time happened by the first period of the afternoon.
Missing the Bus
All bus kids know this one, and for those out there that always got a ride to school from their parents you suck, a lot. Once that yellow bus turned the corner and out of your distance the long up the driveway to tell your parent you missed the bus was always a tough pill to swallow. This was similar to the Blockbuster race, but slightly more serious because by forcing your parents to drive you to school they would be late for work as well and would most likely have to answer to someone. My favorite part of this experience occurred in the first few seconds when your parent made the same motion backing out of the driveway that Harrison Ford did backing out of the alley in Clear And Present Danger.