Did I really just say that?

I tend toward pretty quiet, maybe this sort of thing happens to other people more often. When you say that thing that seemed fine when you thought it, totally wrong when you hear it coming out of your mouth, and there is just no way to un-say it.
The other day I was chairing a meeting where people are expected to participate. “Just chime in if you have something to say, I’ll call on people if the silence becomes too deafening”…at which point I look over at the deaf guy and his ASL translators. Yes I am an idiot. I decided that apologizing would just make it worse, so I have learned enough ASL to say hello and welcome him by name next time I see him. Also “I am only just learning, this is my entire vocabulary” in case he starts windmilling in response.

At one job I had there was a lady that I got along pretty well with. A few months after I quit, I ran into her in a diner and we greeted each other with a hug. I remarked that it was nice to finally be able to do that without harassment concerns. At which point I immediately recalled that rumor had it that men had been fired on two occasions for giving her unwelcome attention. Oops. No way I could figure to fix that other than just move on.
What things have come out of your mouth that you immediately wished you could pull back in?

I was on a call with my boss an a couple of teammates. The call was at noon, and my boss had scheduled it. We were discussing how many meetings we have snd I said that my only free time was usually at lunch because only rude people schedule meeting at noon. Oops.

“When is your baby due?”

I told a manager I was getting a coffee so I could stay awake in a boring meeting, then I remembered he was the one hosting it.

Last weekend I was at Panera getting breakfast. It was about 7 a.m. and I was barely awake. A worker woman was outside setting up a patio and when she saw me she went to open the door for me. I said “I should be getting the door for you since you are the pregnant one!” She wasn’t pregnant. I wanted to die.

To our credit I think most of us only make the pregnancy mistake once, probably because it’s so mortifying when it happens.

I did that one on my first day of a new job . . . to my new supervisor. And there’s absolutely nothing you can say to make it better.

I’ve learned from the mistakes of others. My rule is that no matter how “obvious” it is the woman you’re talking to is pregnant, unless she mentions it in conversation or you have second-hand confirmation, don’t assume. To me it seems that the look of a pregnant woman is distinct from somebody with extra pounds, but I’ve heard too many horror stories to dare risk trusting my visual judgment.

I once inadvertently told a “cripple joke” to a guy who was still fairly new to his wheelchair after a motorcycle accident.

Years and years ago two friends (one of whom was black) and I were going to go for a drive. Me: “Shotgun!” Black friend: “But… I’m so tall…” (I’m 5’2" with shoes on, he was at least 6’4".) Me, without even waiting long enough to give it any kind of thought at all: “Yeah, but I’m white.”

In both of these instances the “victims” of my thoughtlessness were totally fine about it. Wheelchair guy knew I wasn’t intentionally being insensitive (or didn’t see it as insensitive at all) and laughed at my joke. Black friend was one of my best friends at the time. I once referred to him as “my brotha” but, because I’m totally not black-cool, it came out with some serious Midwest white girl emphasis on the -er, something he still teases me about. So he knew I’m not actually racist and had witnessed my lack of brain to mouth filter a thousand times before.

I laughed my ass off at the “I’m white” comment, I’m not going to lie. The wheelchair thing was horrifying though, made worse, I’m sure, by the fact that I had just met that guy that day.

My boss comes in with something new and nasty I have to do. She says, “You’re going to hate me for this.”

I said, “I already…”

Hellish silence.

“…have a lot I have to do today, but I’ll fit this in.” Lame. Weak. Insipid. The unspoken words were heard by us both. It was right out of a bad sit-com.

Some of these actually make me feel a lot better, everyone has foot in mouth syndrome at some point.

I once came across an accident where an ambulance had sustained frontal damage and a motorbike was wrecked. I stopped to help and spoke to the rider, he had collided with the ambulance and his son who was pillion passenger had sustained a broken leg, the ambulance crew were treating him.

So of course I say, “Well, if you’re going to hit something, it may as well be an ambulance.”

He wasn’t amused.

I don’t understand why people think it’s okay to comment on a woman’s pregnancy regardless. Unless she brings it up herself, her body (and any life forms, human and otherwise, that may be growing within it) is her business.

<I pick up a phone>

Guy: “Is (my brother) there?”

Brother: <whispers> “Tell him I’m not here!”

Me: “He says he’s not here.”

In your post coital bloom never tell your favorite split-ass that she is your favorite split-ass ( this also goes even if she actually is your favorite split-ass)

Because apparently, split-asses (favorite or otherwise) dont like to hear that.

Because, in most people’s experience, most pregnant women are not only okay with talking about it, but actually enjoy it. It’s one of those instant conversation starters that makes you come off as a good conversationalist even if you barely say anything. You get to make someone feel better.

This is a pretty good rule of thumb for why people talk about anything you’d think they shouldn’t. They haven’t received a negative reaction for doing so. And we all are rather Pavlovian.

I’m trying to get a friend to sign a petition, but she is very hesitant. I say “Look, i’m only asking you to sign a petition, not give me your first born son.”

THEN I remember her first born son was the victim of a murder/suicide by his father.

When planning a project with a colleague, we were discussing presenting this to the big boss and I made the fire-the-gun-on-my-temple gesture. I noticed from the corner of my eye that he had a brief reaction, and we continued the meeting. A few minutes later I remembered a member of his family had committed suicide a couple of months before.

For most of my life, I carefully chose what I said and to whom I said it. I worried about how my words might be construed and the possibility that they might piss people off of offend someone.

But as I hit my mid-30s (I’m 38 now), I don’t give a fuck who does or doesn’t like what I have to say. I just speak my mind and let the chips fall where they may! My blood pressure is lower, I no longer have anxiety attacks and my stomach ulcers (two of them) haven’t flared up since!!!

I can’t fight DNA…I am my mother’s son!

Some family friends were at my parent’s house and announced the engagement of their daughter. I aked “When is the baby due?”. Dead, sickening silence. He was born about 6 months later.

Twenty years ago I was selling a washer/dryer before I left for overseas, and the guy who was buying it kept trying to haggle me for a lower price, Finally, exasperated, I said, “Damn, Dave, why do you keep trying to Jew me down?”… to the only Jewish guy in my unit. I still cringe at the memory.

Nothing can make that better. Nothing.