The other day I noticed how odd I behave when I have writer’s block or am bored. For example, I started walking around the apartment, making chicken noises. It made me wonder if other people do it too. Clucking aside, do people have bizarre ticks they do unthinkingly or am I just an oddball? Thankfully, inspiration struck – and now I give unto you this list of weird things I do unthinkingly (and maybe you do too).
1. Fantasize about breaking into musical scores
Emphasis on “fantasize.” Ever have a moment where you put on your headphones, hit shuffle, and the perfect song comes on at the moment? Ever dream of belting out the lyrics, parting the tide of cars or people, and twirling into the spotlight? I do all the time.
2. Hear someone laugh and assume it is aimed at me
It does not matter where I am – in the supermarket, on the subway, shopping for new underwear, or reading a magazine in the checkout line. If someone laughs, I am dogged to find out where it came from, if they are looking in my direction, and what I could have possibly done to become the source of such amusement. Moreover, if there is a reflective surface, I am looking at myself thinking, “Oh man, how bad does my hair look now?” Or, “Is there a bogey?”
3. Send an email or text and immediately regret it
Perhaps it is just because I fear being misunderstood, but I have to review messages that have already been sent all the time. Then I spend another 5 minutes wondering if I wrote everything well enough to be understood. Every. Single. Time.
4. Rehearsing conversations in my head
If I am in route to the doctor’s office or even to a hair appointment, I am thinking of potential questions and answers to everything. It depends on how long ago I last saw the person, but most of the time I immediately start thinking about the last conversation and how to put that subject matter into play. Then when the real conversation starts, none of the stuff I rehearsed is talked about. Why I bother mentally preparing, I will never know.
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5. Slipping in a shallow pool and temporarily forgetting how to swim
Or forgetting how to do simple dance steps. Brain farts are frightening. There is an intense moment of fish-out-of-water flailing the happens before my brain goes, “Wait! We know how to do this!” Then I wind up blushing and wanting to hide inside my clothing like a turtle.
6. Saying “Ow” even when nothing touched me
Being that I am the definition of klutz off the dance floor (sometimes even on it), I have gotten into the habit of saying “ow,” whenever I bump into something… or even when I do not. In fact, something could simply drop at my feet, never touching me, and I will say “ow.” Someone could poke my personal bubble, and I will mutter it. If I drop something, despite not getting hurt or causing damage, you guessed it. Ow.
7. Quirk an eyebrow when I am confused
Although I am not much of a talker, my facial expressions make up for my lack of verbosity. Especially my eyebrows. They have minds of their own, and they know exactly how to channel my befuddlement by knitting together or having one lift higher than the other. Sometimes when I am getting directions from someone, the buggers move, and I get asked whether or not I understand. Yes, I do. Just please ignore my traitorous brows and resting b*tch face. Please.
8. Laugh at inappropriate times
Science has deemed laughing at inopportune moments a defensive gesture, revealing how the brain is trying to cope with extreme emotional stress. So while I might giggle when I am getting reprimanded, accidentally trip over my own feet, or at morbid jokes, it is not always conscious. In fact, the more uncomfortable I am, the more I chuckle, which is always causing trouble on dates.
9. Pick up things with my feet
Aside from an affinity for going barefoot, I am always picking things with my toes. Even when I know I am going to need my hands, the feet are the first thing to say, “I got it!”
10. Wondering what I sound like to others
Ever listen to your voice recorded in video and just want to die? Since the one time I recorded myself singing one of my favorite songs, I have been rattled with the notion of sounding annoying to everyone and everything. Every squeak, groan, knotted tongue, and sigh is immediately scrutinized by my nit-picking brain.
Everyone has their unique quirks, and some of us even find commonality in that. Hopefully, I am not alone in this. So I ask you: What weird things do you do?