I'm afflicted. It's terrible. I know I can't be the only person, but perhaps I am somewhat sensitive to noticing my own faults. This disease, ladies and gentlemen, is foot-in-mouth syndrome. No, it's not that nasty thing where you get blisters and stuff in your mouth. It's the thing where you say something completely rude and somewhat condescending and you don't realize it until later.
My foot in mouth disorder runs rampant, from the gamut of accidently insulting where someone went to school, or talking too inexpertly about divorce, or making an offhanded comment about where someone is from, to sounding incredible stupid by not knowing something somehow everyone else knows. I don't mean to be so uncouth, and I often wonder why sometimes I don't think before I speak. I know that everyone occasionally sticks their foot in their mouth. But when I do it, I tend to think about it for hours afterward.
This is how a foot-in-mouth situation might unravel for me.
Making conversation with some old acquaintences from high school, I find out one of the girls is getting her MBA. In a moment in which my brain had temporary made like Elvis and left the building, I asked "MBA in what?" They looked at me with incredulity. "Oh, that was a really dumb question, wasn't it?" They chuckled quietly at my expence. I simply didn't know if there were different MBAs you could get...how was I supposed to know that there was only one MBA?
Anyway, so I can't stop thinking about the stupid thing I said. Then my mind rambles on, and I start feeling really bad about myself. These girls must think I'm an idiot! Here I am, supposed to be smart, but really I'm dumb and talentless, TALENTLESS. Yeah, I think I'm such a big deal, moving to New York, but really I'm just a FAILURE. A big fat one!
And this will go on for a bit. It's worse when I think I've insulted someone's intelligence or life or whatever, because then my self doubt spirals further. I'm just not a nice person. How is it I have any friends, when I can be so mean like that? Why am I so STUPID???
Maybe I just need to pay more attention to the things I say. Other people must stick their feet in their mouths too, right? Am I the only one who feels really bad when it happens?