The best way to humiliate me
Have you ever wondered what the most humiliating moment in your life was?
If you’ve ever been introduced to a large number of people in an informal setting then someone will have definitely asked you that. Thankfully, I’ve never had that experience so I’ve never had to muster a response but I have thought about it.
There’s never been anything in my life that I’ve been hugely embarrassed by. There are plenty of things I did as a kid that would be terrible if they ever came out but there’s always the excuse that I was a child and didn’t know any better.
For instance, when I was in year 6 I dressed up as a woman and talked about going on a flight to Benidorm. Which wasn’t weird then but now kind of freaks me out.
But recently at work, I’ve had two experiences which were really quite humiliating.
It was doing the same thing incredibly poorly twice. This task is probably one of the simplest to do. Some people are successful at it every day. Young children are able to do this.
It is the mighty task of peeling an orange.
Let me take you through the trials I faced:
I first tried to make in-roads to the fleshy centre and failed. I dug my nail in and all I ended up with was a zesty fingertip. Then I went too far and squirted orange juice all over me and my desk.
All the while I was trying to do this in a subtle way – not showing off my incompetence with oranges to my co-workers – but it becomes tricky once a pool of juice forms in front of you.
So I had half peeled this orange and I thought it might be time to try and split out the segments. By this point, it became more about getting to the orange rather than the enjoyment of eating it.
It’s a bit like life, it’s not about the destination (eating the orange) it’s how you get there that matters (peeling the orange).
But my attempts to split it up into segments were futile and I ended up tearing the orange into indiscernible pieces, all covered with a bit of peel here and there. Finally I got a piece, not a full segment, but a piece.
I got a certain sense of elation from the first piece, but in front of me remained the rest of the massacred orange, it’s guts and dignity spilling out from the peel.
It had now become a sign of my defeat rather than a tasty treat.
I gave up.
I threw it away.
It wouldn’t be as painful if it were a full orange though, everyone knows an orange can be tricky to enter and giving up is just the sign of an uncooperative orange, but these were the size of a satsuma.
Who can’t get into a satsuma?!
So if you want to see me struggle, strain, fail and humiliate myself, then just ask me to peel an orange for you – just make sure you don’t want to eat it afterwards, you’ll be picking it out of a bin.