“My name is Emily, and I’m socially awkward.”

I find myself in socially awkward situations on a daily basis for two key
reasons:

-I am social.  

-I am naturally awkward.

This is a list of the socially awkward situations that seem to happen to me specifically, more than anyone else I know.

1.  Someone says hi to someone walking behind me, but I think he/she is talking to me.

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2.  Someone actually IS saying hi to me but I’m not listening and spit out an anticipatory response.

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3. I say, “I love you,” on accident.  This has happened with students and acquaintances. It also happened on a first date once…but that’s a story for another day.

Student: (Telling me a story about her baby brother at the end of class).. Yeah, so…that’s what happened with my brother.

Me: Oh wow, thanks for telling me that story. I’m glad you stopped by. Oh! It’s time for lunch.

(Student walks away.)

Me: Have a good day! I love you!..OH! I mean, oops, I didn’t mean to say that. I thought I was saying goodbye to my daughter!

(Student looks at me strangely.)

Me: I mean, I DO love you…like, I love ALL my students…My brain just was in the habit of saying that to my daughter!

(Student looks at me bizarrely, while my teacher friends laugh in the background.)

This list only scratches the surface honestly. But, all three of these incidents, I suppose, come out of my desire to connect to people–to exchange social pleasantries, even though it may not come out right at times. I believe it’s always better to be kind than to ignore, to be friendly instead of aloof, and to be amicable instead of distant, DESPITE the risk of being socially awkward.

And I’m going to be socially awkward now and switch the topic abruptly to mashed potatoes. Have you ever had leftover mashed potatoes that you didn’t know what to do with?

Well it just so happens that my little Mennonite grandma, Ruth Sommers, has the perfect recipe for using up those mashed potatoes. And it’s so good, that she even got it published in a cookbook.

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The T.S. at the top of the recipe stands for “time saving.” Because my little Mennonite grandma was all about saving time.

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