In a time with all kinds of depressing news, we could all use a laugh. This morning I recall times in my life that I think are pretty funny, and it makes me think that everyone has a funny story to share. If you have one, I'd love to hear it. Below are a few of my favorites.
1) My fly problem
When I was in college, I had the privilege of having my own apartment and during the summer of '07, I had a fly problem. So, I went to the local Walmart and bought this can of insect repellent that would release this gas into the air to kill whatever it came in contact with. You had to leave the apartment as soon as it went off. So, I thought I'd release the gas and go to my newspaper internship job and then once I'd come back, the place would be fly free. I set the can on top of the kitchen table, hit the switch, and the plume of smoke ran out like Mount St. Helens. I freaked out and ran out of that apartment like my hair was on fire. I was all ready for work - khaki pants, nice polo, but when I looked down, I noticed I didn't have on any shoes or socks. By this time the apartment was filling up with the insecticide and smoke was reaching all levels of the kitchen. I looked between the kitchen and my feet, shrugged, and made a turn for my car. I decided that I would head to a professional job barefoot. There I was, professionally dressed and yet looking like a hippie all at once. The best part was that no one said anything. I mentioned to my boss halfway through the day, "Do you know what's funny? I've been here half the day and no one has noticed that I haven't been wearing any shoes or socks." She said, "Well, I noticed, but I thought you just got comfortable and kicked them under your desk." We both had a good laugh about that one, and any nerves I had about going into work barefoot subsided. I don't think it was even casual Friday, but it was the last time I ever would go barefoot to that job or any job for that matter.
2) Before school started a few years back, we had an institute day with a guest speaker. The speaker asked for a few volunteers to come up on stage to help out with her demonstration about the kind of personalities that make up the type of educators we want in the classroom. She asked me how people would describe me. I said, "patient, creative, and corny." After I said corny the crowd busted out in laughter. They thought I said something entirely different, and the speaker said, "We got a funny one here." I laughed with them, but I thought they heard corny. I had a couple of minutes where I'm thinking that my corny sense of humor really gets around. When I got off the stage, a coworker of mine told me what people really thought I said. My face beat red, and then I laughed along with her. They never let me live that one down.
3) I worked my butt off in college. When I was at EIU, I worked on the daily paper in several different capacities, as a reporter, an online interactive editor, and as the editor in chief for an online magazine called Pounce. Well, at the end-of-the-year journalism banquet, I was scheduled to give a speech for being the EIC for Pounce Online. The day of the banquet was the same day that my favorite Beatles cover band, American English, was playing on campus. I jumped at the chance to cover it for the paper, and stayed there probably a little too close for comfort where I had to rush to get ready and make it over there. The thing that I forgot about was making sure that I had fancy clothes in my closet. I never exactly needed to get dressed up while I was there. My most formal outfit was like a button-down shirt with khakis, and I thought some people might be in dresses and suits. Time was ticking, and I looked around the closet and got an idea. I'd go for the Animal House toga look. I had a white bath robe in there that I thought would make a great connection to my speech, which I also didn't prepare. So, I threw on a t-shirt, a pair of shorts, and my robe. Not only were some people dressed up, everyone was dressed up. It was as if I walked into a black-tie gala. But when I arrived, I was met with hi-fives and laughs. In my speech, I said something to the effect that people probably didn't expect me to wear a robe, but in journalism, you have to expect the unexpected. Journalism professors and people in there that were in the business said that my speech was one of the best they ever heard. Little did they know that it was impromptu. I was invited to a party that night, and it was packed to the brim. When I arrived, I was given cheers as I walked in with my robe on. People loved it, and it was one of the best nights I had at EIU, even if it was one of my last.