Saturday, October 29, 2011

your self-esteem boost for the weekend



When we first moved into this house, we noted that the previous owners had added a few design flourishes which were a little bit, shall we say, rococo for our tastes. Some of them came down immediately--the full wall mirrors in several areas, the gold-painted mirror flanked by a roulade and cherub motif in the half bathroom. But some of the others, like the gold (colored) doorknobs on the French doors throughout, while not quite my taste, seemed innocuous and certainly functional enough.

Seemed.

The problem with these doorknobs, I've found, is that I keep getting hooked on them. Not anyone else, just me. Everyone else in this house is either tall enough or short enough to avoid this particular problem, but at my height (5'2" and a half--and if you don't think that half inch is important, you much be much taller than 5'2") these doorknobs all over the house are right at waist height. Belt loop height, to be exact. I keep getting hooked on these doorknobs. And you would think that it's easy enough to unloop oneself, but look at that doorknob a little closer. The loop is a little bit spiralled, like a nautilus. Like one of those barbed fishooks. And once you get hooked, it's actually unusually difficult to extricate yourself.

Yesterday, I went to Costco to do some grocery shopping. We had a nice time in Orlando, but when we came home the food situation in the larder was a little bare-bones, and breakfast that morning was somewhat thin, which inexplicably panicked the kids. (Under normal circumstances I don't think they'd have any trouble with a breakfast of cereal and milk, but the fact that that's all there was to eat suddenly had them eyeing the USDA food pyramid and acting like we were the Joads in Dust Bowl Americana or some such thing.)  So anyway, I went to Costco and stocked up on, whatever, a coffin-sized flat of strawberries, cinder-block sized bricks of cold cuts, the like--and headed back to the house to stick the perishables in the fridge before heading out again to pick up the kids from school.

Only, as usual, I got hooked on the doorknob. One of my back belt loops. And I had turned the home security alarm on before I'd left for the store, so now that was counting down the 40 seconds or however much time I had to punch in my code until the alarm went off. I calmly laid down my drum of peanut butter and body-bag-sized sack of raisins and went about calmly disentangling myself, only to grow increasingly less calm as the second continued to tick by and I was still caught on the spiral of the doorknob hook. Looking at it straight on, it seems like it should be easy enough, but looking at it from above and behind, for some reason I couldn't get my belt loop out.

The forty seconds elapsed, and now the external security alarm started to go off with a loud whoop whoop whoop sound which, in theory, would bring the police (or at the very least, a local citizen militia) running to help defend the old homestead. I began to panic. I had to turn off that alarm, but the security pad was at least ten feet away on the far wall of the kitchen. Plan A, the straightforward plan, was not working, so I thought: my pants. If I can't get my pants out of the doorknob, I had to take off my pants instead.

So I took off my shoes. I undid my top pants button and unzipped the fly. As I started to shimmy out of my pants it occurred to me that if someone did show up to investigate the alarm, what they'd find would be a pair of beige corduroys hanging from my kitchen door, and me, pantsless, standing in a scattered pile of bulk pistachio nuts, BUT NEVER MIND ABOUT THAT NOW, JUST TURN OFF THE ALARM, DUMBASS.

It took a little while longer to realize that it's actually pretty difficult to take off your pants if you can't pull your pants down--the pants were still hooked on the doorknob at waist-level, remember--when suddenly, I was free.  Free!  I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS, FUCKERS!  What happened eventually was that the beltloop broke. Thank you, Gap Incorporated, for your shoddy tailoring. I hurriedly punched in the security code, stopped the alarm, and waited for the security company to call and make sure that I was OK, just like in all those commercials where the dark-clothed, stocking capped burglar (in broad daylight, like, nice camoflage job, guy) inexplicably tries to break into that house in where the mom and her daughter are baking cookies or whatnot else wholesome and good.

The security company never checked in, by the way. And while, yes, there was no real emergency, it was just me, my pants, and an over-designed doorknob, for all they know, I COULD BE DEAD. Whether it's a good thing or a bad thing that no one in this densely populated neighborhood came around to witness my shame, I can't quite decide yet.

58 comments:

  1. Make a sleeve and put it over the handle! no more getting caught!

    I’m 5 1’ and sometimes get caught on normal door knobs and more on those handle ones.

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  2. This happens to me too... and I am also 5"2.5

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  3. Hahahahaha I'm 5'0" and yes, that half inch always counts!!!!

    ps. Loved your book!!!!

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  4. Ann Onny12:05 PM

    I know I am not the only one who suffers from doorknob-inflicted black-and-blue hip bones.

    I'm just not.

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  5. Hilarious! You crack me up! :) I love it.
    A Teeny Tiny Teacher

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  6. Haha! We have those same godforsaken door handles from the people who built the house, and coincidentally had the same horrible taste as the former owners of your house, and this happens to me all the time. (I'm 5'2" and a half as well.) It's always my belt loops. Or my purse. But nothing this hilarious has ever happened to me because of the door knobs and being the perfect height to get caught on them. You should consider writing another book, but this time on the funny things that happen to short people.

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  7. oh my, I'm sure it wasn't funny at the time, but it sure is to us! thanks for sharing your predicament!

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  8. This is one of my favorite posts in a long time. Your story telling prowess is simply brilliant! ♥

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  9. Oh my gosh - the hilarity of it! The tears of laughter! My nearly 3 year old is sitting beside me saying "what's all that laughing, Mom?"

    Thanks for making my weekend AWESOME. And sorry about the silly doorknobs and useless security company.

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  10. OMG I laughed out loud. Thank you!

    And - we have legs of the same length, though I'm nearly 5'4" thank you very much, because that happens to me ALL THE TIME! (the belt loop thing)

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  11. Anonymous9:50 PM

    Hilarious! I'm 171cm (not sure what that is in imperial - 5ft6 or so?) and the door jambs at my practice are EXACTLY my belt loop height - always so embarrassing when going out of the room to get something and getting yanked back by my pants - and there is ALWAYS a patient in the room when that happens! Eventually , the belt loops on all my pants broke..

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  12. I've DEFINITELY gotten caught in door knob before... you aren't alone!

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  13. Oh my, when I was reading this post, I was also Skype-ing with my son (in college) and trying hard to keep a straight face while he was telling me about internships, and daylight savings time & stuff! You crack me up!!!

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  14. Anonymous1:36 AM

    I'm 5'4'', but with longish legs, and I have NEVER heard of this crazy, recurring challenge, so there really must be a really particular height window of those for whom it happens . . . hilarious story!

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  15. Being 5'7 is no antidote to this problem, trust me. Though, it's not usually my belt loops that get caught so much as my pockets.

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  16. I'm 5'2 1/2 " and also get hooked. I had no idea the problem was my exact height. Sheesh. Just to note - my door knobs are more the catch and release kind apparently :)

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  17. this post made me laugh out loud.
    I LOVE your book by the way...I finished it in a week, I couldn't put it down. I kept trying to stop reading, to make it last a little longer...and well, just didn't have the self-control.

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  18. 4'11". My sleeves keep getting caught.

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  19. 5'2.5" The half makes ALL the difference. People look at me like I'm crazy (for that) when I make it clear that is my height (and not 5'2" (I'm taller than that, c'mon!) and NOT 5'3" (because that's lying)).

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  20. One of your best posts!!!! For christs sake replace the handles or you may be forced to wear velour clothing in your home.

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  21. I'm 5'3 and this happens to me ALL THE TIME. The handles in the kitchen perfectly align with my belt-loops and I frequently find myself trapped at the sink while the oven timer shrieks at me.

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  22. I had those doorknobs. They are a pain in the ass.

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  23. I could not have said it better myself ... I am 5'1 1/2" and any person who scoffs at that extra half inch is WAY taller than 5'1 1/2"!!! And our security system goes off if we close a cupboard door too heartily (overactive glass-breaking sensors) and yes, that is a pain.

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  24. Anonymous10:59 PM

    I have to say, there have been many times in my life when I have read something at which others are laughing hysterically, only to find that it is mildly amusing, or even sort of stupid. This was NOT one of those times. I was in the waiting room of an autism therapy office at the time and I was laughing so hard tears were streaming down my face. I had to leave and go to the car to collect myself.

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  25. Thank you so much for sharing this story! I got a good laugh out of it! I'm always getting stuck on french door knobs!! It is quite annoying!

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  26. Michelle, you're absolutely hilarious! The fact that it has happened to me too is why I'm laughing even harder. My 4 year old cracked up when he saw me stuck one day, and watching mommy trying to untangle herself! I randomly re-checked your blog cause it's been a long time. I've just reemerged into the world after studying for my Boards. I haven't read your posts about studying for your Boards, but I'm sure you can understand my extreme stress of memorizing everything under the sun, but yet nothing sticking cause now I'm no longer just a single medical student hiding in the library, but now between a full time job and 3 boys 4 and under, it's just absolutely impossible to study. Well, reading your blog reminded me also I need to pick up your book. It will be my first pleasurable read after I put away all my Boards study materials :)

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  27. Anonymous8:17 PM

    Where art thou?

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  28. Anonymous10:37 AM

    Where'd you go? It's been almost a month...we miss you!!

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  29. Anonymous6:45 PM

    Congratulations! Such exciting news for your family.

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  30. Anonymous12:58 AM

    although i always find it kind of crazy that you find the time to work, raise two adorable sons AND blog... I still really miss your posts.
    ~ a selfish Peds resident and big fan

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  31. Outre2:51 PM

    I just came back from visiting my parents. Their house only has those door handles, but I guess enough people have been caught in the swirly part over the years because the swirls on their door handles are filled. The filled part is recessed so the swirl design still show up but lessen the pants-catching effect.

    I thought of this post and had a little chuckle to myself and thanked all the folks that must have sent in complaints to the manufactures to cause the design change...

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  32. Anonymous7:49 PM

    hellloooo.... echo echo echo....
    come back Michelle.....
    julia

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  33. I just found you and I laughed so hard. Drum of peanut butter...body bag of raisins...shoddy tailoring...I am dying. I am your newest fan. I may be up all night catching up on all the posts I have never read from you.

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  34. Anonymous8:54 PM

    You uh...alive?

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  35. Anonymous11:33 PM

    Michelle, where are you?!?!?

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  36. Anonymous11:02 PM

    No longer have a book to push, so you don't update anymore?

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  37. Elena5:13 PM

    Got your book for Christmas! SO EXCITED! :)

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  38. Anonymous12:33 PM

    "No longer have a book to push, so you don't update anymore?"

    hee.

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  39. Anonymous2:57 PM

    We miss you, hope all is well, and hope you're back soon!

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  40. Anonymous1:52 PM

    Come back Michelle, come back!

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  41. Anonymous5:55 PM

    Where are our bookmarks?
    I know that you offered them to us to entice us to pre-order your books in order to get your first week sales as high as possible and to make more money off of it and that you are busy, but it's been over half a year and it's getting kind of ridiculous. And you wonder why people in the readers' comments section of the NYTimes speak ill of selfish, money-grubbing doctors like you.

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  42. Sarah6:32 PM

    happy new year's eve, michelle!!! wishing you and your family the very best for the coming year :)

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  43. Anonymous11:10 PM

    Anon @ 5:55PM: Take it easy. Maybe it hasn't fully occurred to you that Michelle is also Dr. Au,and works long hours.

    We don't know why Michelle hasn't blogged in months (this is unlike her); have you thought that MAYBE just MAYBE it is possible that there MIGHT be a crisis of some sort that MIGHT be more important than sending out bookmarks to readers? Or are you such a self-absorbed jerk that you don’ t care.

    Michelle: Happy New Year! I hope this year will be truly happy for you and your loved ones!

    -L

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  44. I don't know about boosting my self-esteem, but thanks for the laughter. By the way, I hope you aren't still with that alarm company.

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  45. I don't know about boosting my self-esteem, but thanks for the laughter. By the way, I hope you aren't still with that alarm company.

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  46. Anonymous9:52 PM

    I got my bookmark a long time ago.

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  47. I just found your blog and literally had tears running down my face with this post, hilarious!

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  48. Anonymous11:16 AM

    hope you and your family are well

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  49. Anonymous3:13 PM

    i miss you!

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  50. Anonymous9:32 PM

    miss you michelle!! come back! tumblr is not enough. i add to the anon @ 9:52 poster above that i got my bookmark approximately 2 weeks after telling michelle i bought the book, AGES ago!

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  51. Everyone misses your blog!!
    Please, please come back when you can!
    Hope all is well.

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  52. Anonymous10:58 PM

    I know why the caged bird sings fuckers!! Ohmygod laughing so hard right now!! (:

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  53. Girls who have low self-esteem generally go where society leads them. Unfortunately, the stakes are high if they mess up. “When girls who already have a low sense of self engage in any activity before they’re ready, their Self Esteem for Teens plummets even more,” says Beck. Often, such activity can be self-destructive or even harmful. The problem is that besides ruining their tween/teen years, these behaviors of Self Esteem for Teens tend to follow them into adulthood and affect their lives as a whole, then get passed on to the next generation.

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