An embarrassing dad’s cringe-worthy near miss

Dads have a duty to embarrass their children, and I like to think I perform the role pretty well. But yesterday I was within a second of entering the dads’ hall of fame for excruciating embarrassment.

We’d gone out for lunch – my wife, nine-year-old daughter, six-year-old son and I – to an Italian restaurant, to celebrate my wife’s birthday.

It was all very enjoyable, and the only embarrassment I caused during the meal itself was for my wife, when she became the centre of attention for a rousing chorus of ‘happy birthday’.

My brush with notoriety came as we were leaving the restaurant. As we neared the door, I found the waiter standing in front of me, with his arms outstretched and a big, daft grin on his face.

I was struck by panic. What was happening? Did he really want to hug me? I mean, he was a nice man but I didn’t think we got on THAT well. I’ve never hugged waiters anywhere else. I wasn’t prepared for it.

He did seem very enthusiastic about it, though. I wondered if it was an Italian custom and didn’t want to cause offence by snubbing his warm gesture.

It was all a bit awkward, though. Why me? There didn’t seem to be any other hugging going on. And he was about a foot-and-a-half shorter than me, which would add an extra level of awkwardness to our impending embrace. I’d either have to stoop (ungainly) or pick him up (just weird).

Caught in a moment of indecision, I felt my arms rising into cuddle position. I was about to give him the most awkward hug ever, when I noticed he had a lollipop in each hand and was actually handing them to the kids, who were standing either side of me.

Breathing a sigh of relief, and thanking my unwitting would-be hugger, we left the restaurant, and I revealed to my unsuspecting family what had almost happened.

It would have been social awkwardness on a whole new level, and I’d have surely had to stay away from the restaurant and surrounding areas for at least five years.

A brush with infamy narrowly avoided, we drove off guffawing at my silliness.

I may have dodged the hall of fame, but I like to think my cringe-worthy near miss has at least given my children a glimpse of how humiliating their futures could be and scored me some bonus embarrassing dad points.

Advertisements

2 Comments on “An embarrassing dad’s cringe-worthy near miss”

  1. katejones73 says:

    I loved this post! Shared it with my daughters who agreed that if you had hugged that waiter, you would have seriously crossed the ’embarrassing dad’ line!!

  2. […] light-hearted stuff about parenting, but my kids are getting older and I don’t want to embarrass them – not in a blog […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s