How many in the class have ever realized after the work day was over, school was let out or you had just gotten home from seeing friends or running errands that in the hustle and bustle of getting dressed that morning, you had forgotten just one teeny, weeny detail…
To shut the barn door.
Close the fly.
You forgot to zip up.
My hand is raising the roof as we speak.
When I was in third grade, my third grade teacher Ms. Zamzow asked me to become a part of my elementary school’s (shout out to the Maine Lions!) Book Bowl team. Book Bowl, if you aren’t quite familiar, is basically like book Jeopardy, with teams competing against each other for who knows the most about the selection of books that we were given to read. The types of questions asked varied, everything from the plot lines and character schemas to the settings, vocab and basic understanding of the themes and lessons found in each book.
Of course I jumped at the chance to participate in something as awesome as this. I mean, spending time after school–and on competition days, DURING school, just chillaxin’ with fellow booknerds like myself, reading awesome books, discussing them and then kicking other team’s booties in the process? Oh, and did I mention the plethora of pizza and ice cream sundae parties that we had as well? Book worms need our energy after all 😉
What could be better?! Book Bowl was awesome. So awesome that I ended up competing for three years. when I was in fifth grade, my last year as a bonified Book Bowl competitor, we made it to the Regional Competition, the World Series if you will of all book competitions. My team had worked hard all year and we had finally made it! That big ‘ol Golden Book trophy was ours for the taking. It was nearing the end of the final round and the last two teams had to nominate two members to stand up and answer the last and deciding question. This was it. All that stood between my team’s trophy and Maine Lion pride (pun intended) was Shelby Voight from Lincoln Elementary. I SO had this.
Both of us stood up in front of all the other teams, our coaches and our fans (hi mom and dad), and were asked the last question: “How do we think the moral implications of The Giver would affect us today?”
Not a simple question to be sure, but I was confident in my answer. I stood up proudly, gave a riveting (to say the least) response and waited for the judge’s reaction with bated breath. I looked at Ms. Zamzow, my team, and lastly my mom and dad in the audience and couldn’t have felt more proud of what we had accomplished, no matter what the final outcome was. Out of the corner of my eye, I noticed that my mom was trying to say something to me, pointing in my direction. At the time, I thought she was just wishing me luck, letting me know not to worry. How I wish looking back that I paid a bit more attention.
The judges finally had the results and by a score of 29 – 25, the Maine Lions had just become the Regional Book Bowl Champs (cue the Queen song). I was on cloud nine, having just helped my team win the championship but that was to be short-lived. My mom and dad came up to me, hugs and high fives all around but then my mom quickly and quietly took me aside and said the words that sent me running for the hills, actually, the little girl’s room…
“Honey, I tried telling you earlier but your fly is open.”
I hightailed it quicker than the road runner to the bathroom, my face comparable to the likes of Sebastian the lobster. I was so embarrassed. It wasn’t as if my zipper was just down a notch or two or my shirt was long enough to cover up my major fashion faux pas.
Oh no. It was all of the down. The door was all of the open. And I was all of the all of the mortified. Here I was standing up in front of a gymnasium full of people, totally oblivious to the fact that my polka-dotted underroos were for all to see. I swore that after that horrifying incident, I would never, EVER forget to zip. Ever.
Yeah…I wish I could say I made good on that promise.
I don’t know what it is about zippering up that is so incredibly hard for me to do? I mean, it’s not exactly rocket science is it? And it’s not as if it takes forever and a day to accomplish, right? I should say that usually I’m pretty good about remembering to close the barn door, and on the rare occasion when I do forget, I most often quickly realize it before too much damage is done. But there are those days, days like yesterday, where I don’t.
I was on the last leg of my shift at Tarjay and had a pretty darn good day. My boss bought everyone free frappaccinos from Starbucks, I had got the credit record for the day and was even proposed to! The oh so cute little man in his Spiderman t-shirt walked right up to me, offered me his grape Ring Pop and asked if I wanted to marry him. If he had only chosen the cherry instead, I would have actually considered taking the little superhero up on his offer. All in all, it was an awesome day.
Until I was sitting in my car getting ready to leave and noticed that my darn fly was open. My first thought: crap. I forgot again? Really, Wendi?! Are you two years old?! In fact, most two-year olds I know probably know how to get dressed properly. My second thought: I worked for six hours like this. SIX HOURS! All those poor customers and my fellow coworkers had to endure my draftiness. My third thought: If all those poor customers and fellow co-workers knew, why didn’t they say something? My fourth thought? Could I have said something if I was in their Chuck Taylor shoes?
What is the proper etiquette when it comes to letting someone know that they had slipped on their zips? Had something in their teeth? Had toilet paper on their shoe?
Thinking about it, that is probably by far one of the most awkward situations you can find yourself in, even more awkward than being the one who slipped on their zips, had spinach in their teeth or had TP on their shoe. You want to let the person know about their ‘Oops’ so that they can prevent their own Book Bowl moment, but at the same time, how in the world do you go about saying something like that, especially if it involves said person’s crotch area (uhh…why were you looking in that direction in the first place?).
I would love to know your thoughts!
As for me, I have learned my lesson. I, Wendi Hansen, hereby promise to never, ever NOT forget to shut the barn door, close the fly and up my zip ever again.
I’ve got ten dollars saying I last a week.
Have a great rest of your hump day, guys!
Question of the day:
Have you ever slipped on your zips?
Do you let people know about their ‘Oops’ moments? If so, how?!