No matter how many times you deal with these situations, they always end up making you feel just like the BBC newsreader must have as he tried to cover up the weatherman giving him the finger live on TV. Grimace. An FHM Final Countdown, first up:
16/ Ski boots
Skiing: a sport intrinsically elegant, classy and stylish. All those beautiful people swooping in snow is enough to make you want to sell your family and take it up full time. But then: boots. Shiny lumps of doom that scrape away flesh like a butcher deboning a leg of lamb.
15/ Going to a restaurant you’re clearly not good enough to be in
“Here’s your main course. sir. Poached Cornish ling, lemongrass and ginger, broccoli and button mushroom, bergamot lemon gel.” “Um, have you got any ketchup? Or chips? Or bread?”
14/ Looking at pictures of your mate’s new girlfriend
The problem is, you see, there’s no correct response. Call her “attractive” and you’ll get a punch in the face. Act unimpressed and your pal will cry. Accidentally look guilty and he’ll assume you’ve seen her naked. “Sorry mate, I’m dying,” is probably your safest bet.
13/ Being told that the person’s watch/ring/bracelet you were taking the piss out of belonged to their deceased relative
That’s weird, I just told Sam he looks like a people trafficker with that ring on and he didn’t come back at me. Maybe he’s not feeling well. What’s that look for? It’s his brother’s ring? Hey, but isn’t his brother dea…ohhhh. Shit.
12/ Trying to introduce two people when you’ve forgotten both their names
The guy on my left is definitely called Tom. Tom something. Hmm. And that’s Matt coming towards us. Or is it Mike? He looks like a Mike. Balls. “So, have you guys met?”
11/ Cuddling on the sofa for the duration of a two hour movie
Oh sure, let’s cuddle. Let’s find that perfect, cosy embrace that puts just enough pressure on my lower spine to make me want to leave you forever. If this film doesn’t finish soon, I will pee on you like an old cat.
10/ Discussing what you want out of life in the kitchen at work
“Me? Long term? Well long term I’d like to work for myself. Doing what? Not sure really, just… stuff. I’d like to travel a bit before I have kids, but I’m worried I’m running out of time. I just really don’t want to do this for the next 25 years. Ha ha! And I don’t want my girlfriend to leave me. Two sugars?”
9/ Borrowing money
And there goes your relationship with your Dad, because the £10,000 he lent you to get your new ‘business’ up and running went on ketamine and a massive, now totally obsolete telly. These days you just sit at home rocking backwards and forwards wondering why he never calls. That wanker. Ever heard the word “recession”, Dad?
8/ A boss who thinks he’s funny but isn’t
“HAHHAHHAHHA (think of the money) GOOD ONE CHIEF!!! (Appraisals are coming up, not long now) You’re so right, my sister is a massive slag who slept with the entire crew of HMS Daring.”
7/ The first poo at a new girlfriend’s…
The morning after the night before. Things are going well. Then the rumblings of an evening of fine dining kick in. Cue a terrifying 20 minutes in her bathroom spent hovering over the toilet like Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible, with the shower on full blast as you deposit your cargo onto a bed of bog roll and fan the stench out the window with her fluffiest hand towel.
6/ Accidentally touching the breast of someone you’ve just been introduced to
Yep, she noticed. Hard not to when a clumsy oaf with paddles for hands inadvertently prods you there. Christ, could this be more awkward? Dangerous question. Turns out, attempting to salvage the situation by cupping a boob in each hand and doing the old “How d’you weigh breasts?” gag has just made it worse. Much, much worse.
5/ Receiving praise
“Well done.” Cringe. “Congratulations, you should be so proud of yourself.” Bite lip. “You’re a credit to your family.” Turn red, bite lip off and cringe yourself into a fit. Honestly, it would be less awkward if they just called you a wanker and slapped you instead.
4/ Parents threatening their children with violence in public
“If you don’t farrrking put that chocolate down and get ova here naaaah, I’m gonna farrrking kill ya!” Well, in her defence, she hasn’t touched him yet. Although, those bruises on his head say otherwise. Just look at something else and walk past. Ooh, a fat pigeon!
3/ Pretending you enjoyed the church service bit of a wedding
Smiling like an idiot: Check. Sharp intake of breath on seeing how beautiful the bride is: Check. Unnerving feeling that Jesus himself is staring into your soul and can see that you’ve set your phone to vibrate and are pressing it against your bollocks to stop yourself falling asleep: Check.
2/ Explaining the concept of death to a child
“One day, a long time from now, you’ll go to sleep just like you always do, but this time you’ll never wake up. You won’t dream, you won’t wake up needing the toilet, it will just be nothingness. No more pain, no more scuffed knees or worries about paying the mortgage, it’ll just be what Daddy calls ‘the sweet release of death’.”
1/ Having a tradesman in your house
As he saunters in from his butch van, your voice rises several octaves. On the plus side, only 20 minutes of pretending to know what he’s on about till you can hide in your room while he fixes stuff. You’re like the Anne Frank of plumbing.
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3/ Old boozy McFlufferson can't stand up
4/ Dumb News
5/ The Lush goes to Exmouth