#8 – All Together Now Awkward

One of my favorite kinds of awkward is the All Together Now Awkward. While awkward is usually a dis-unifying, jarring kind of moment, All Together Now Awkward is an Aurora Borealis type of rare and beautiful moment. A phenomenon that unites those who are unlucky enough to witness someone digging their own grave of foolishness.

If you’ve experienced it, you know exactly when I’m talking about; when someone does or says something that to one percent of the world is acceptable, but to the other 99 percent of us is completely uncomfortable. (Before you envision me with stone in hand ready for hurling, I recognize that we all take a trip to this one percent world now and then. This post is about how nice it is to be in the realm of the 99. My one percent moment will come in a later blog or when you meet me in person – whichever comes first.)

Back to the expo – Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson had just completed a very funny and very interesting session about their book series based on the story of Peter Pan. Graciously, they had opened up the forum for questions and people were asking expected things like – what tips do you have for young writers, what challenges do you face in collaborating together, etc. There was time for one last question when a woman near the front of the room said something to the effect of, “Have you heard of (insert some random book title here)?” When Mr. Pearson’s answer was no, she continued for a few minutes to praise the works of this other author and finished by instructing both Dave and Ridley to read said book.

Cricket.

After the call of the cricket came the collective, All Together Now Awkward sigh. As with most ATNA moments, the sigh was followed by a shared nervous giggle. I know you know this giggle – where the trade off for the absence of audible sound is a bouncing abdomen/quivering shoulders combo and an occasional snort escaping from someone who hasn’t quite mastered the art of retaining an inappropriate laugh. The pinnacle of the All Together Now Awkward came in Ridley’s simple yet startled response of “Okay.”

Then, the session was over. We all went back out into the wild world of the D23 expo with more than a refreshed appreciation for good writing, but also with a unified sense of relief that it wasn’t us who has been the awkward one. While its never kind to revel in someone else’s awkward, it is nice when something good, like the unification of total strangers, can come from an otherwise terribly awkward situation. So today, I salute you awkward lady in the front row. May you step back into the world of the 99 percent, hopefully with opened eyes and a mouth that thinks twice before speaking.

Kristen

Mousetalgia Kristen may be best known for her color commentary, but she also brings her inquiring mind and insatiable appetite for new and exciting Disney-related experiences to the podcast.

In addition to her on-the-scene reports, Kristen is also the Mousetalgia house musician, and often records various themes and tunes for the show on her accordion (or her concertina, her piano, her banjo, or some other various rhythm instrument she finds laying around her home), putting her degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music to good use.

After having spent a season in sub-Saharan Africa as a professional storyteller reporting on the HIV/AIDS epidemic, Kristen has a special insight into the value of humor and perspective, and Kristen brings this joie de vivre to Mousetalgia. As a member of D23, the Cartoon Art Museum, and the Walt Disney Family Museum, Kristen rarely misses an opportunity to report on West Coast-based Disney happenings.

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