The month of January tends to get me down. I feel groggy, listless, and vaguely stupid. Maybe that's why, in my haste to get to choir practice Wednesday night, I backed out of my garage without opening the garage door.
My husband was blessedly out of town, unable to view the damage in person, which allowed me to minimize the situation in an email message. As I settled in a flutter among my fellow choir members, I sent a short email to my list of "Favorite People" confessing my blunder and asking, "Has this ever happened to you?"
During choir practice the answers popped into my inbox.
"Not yet, Carol. But twice I've paid for gas at Enmark, and then in my haste drove away without pumping the gas," wrote a college professor.
A scientist confessed that he "opened the garage door, cranked it up, put it into reverse (or so I thought), turned around to put my arm over the seat back, and drove straight forward into the washer, dryer, hot water heater, and freezer."
My brother, a former Air Force fighter pilot, admitted that he had demolished his garage door twice.
Just when we think our embarrassments are peculiarly our own, we find that our fellow humans are right there with us. Like the time I exited the ladies room in a building at Fort Stewart. As my husband and I strode toward the parking lot, a soldier behind me said, "Ma'am, there's something caught in your waistband."
It was a streamer of toilet paper.
Once again, I sought to dilute my humiliation by confessing the incident to my favorite people.
"I came close, frighteningly close, to that one time" my son responded.
"That happened to me when I was working at Bank of America. It is soooo embarrassing," a female friend said.
"Been there, done that. But had to discover it myself," said another.
But to compound my disgrace, I began to feel a twinge in my lower back after returning from choir Wednesday night. No, it was not from crashing through my garage door. That was a breeze.
Prior to leaving for practice, however, I had been watching television while eating a light supper. Perhaps you have seen the YouTube video of doctors and nurses dancing with a female patient in an operating room? She asked them to join her in this celebration of life just before they put her under for a double mastectomy. I had seen the video before, but this time, I cast aside my bagel with peanut butter, leaped up and started trying to imitate the patient's moves. If you've seen the video, you know she is a very good dancer, specializing in a curious hip-rotating move that I could not resist trying.
The doc says I'll be fine in a few months. Hurry, spring.
Carol Megathlin, formerly of Americus, is a Georgia writer who now lives in Savannah.