We’ve all been there: You’re chatting away with an acquaintance when suddenly you make a minor social blunder, and the conversation grinds to a painful halt. It’s totally normal to feel embarrassed, but you can easily avoid that red-faced silence, simply by playing dead. Here are some common, relatable situations in which you should have just rolled over and died:
You make a joke no one laughs at.
It’s always embarrassing to deliver what you think is a zinger only to have it received with blank stares. But you know the drill: Your body stiffens up, your bowels empty, and all of the blood drains from your head. Then, once that awkward moment as passed, “come back to life” and try a slightly reworded version of the punchline. Repeat the process until the joke works.
Someone asked you a question, but you weren’t listening.
There’s nothing worse than when your reverie is broken by the phrase, “What do you think?” when you weren’t paying attention to the conversation. This is the time to claim “internal hemorrhaging” and “blood loss” and call an ambulance immediately. This used to be hard to fake because of the medical bills, but with the Affordable Care Act, it’s getting easier for all American women to play dead, regardless of their socioeconomic status or level of social embarrassment.
You call someone by the wrong name.
Blurting out the wrong name is a mistake that everyone makes, and unfortunately it’s guaranteed to stop a conversation in its tracks. Women with social grace (like you!) deal with this by experiencing the symptoms of an eighteenth century disease. Time to start hobbling, coughing into a handkerchief, and strapping on your leg brace for good measure. Social misstep avoided!
You blurt out your friend’s deepest secret.
You know which of your friends’ secrets are off-limits, but sometimes it just slips out. If you’ve experienced this then you definitely remember the “rigor mortis” setting in. Wait until your pals are engaged in a tearful discussion with the mortician about cremation costs before you make your Irish exit. Your friend will be so busy mourning your death, she’ll definitely forget that you betrayed her trust. Nice!
Awkward pauses are the worst, but with these fake deaths up your sleeve you’ll never have to be embarrassed again! Now get to dyin’!