The Mancunion

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How to become the ultimate awkward situation dodger

As the academic year draws to a close, are those drunken mistakes becoming too much to handle? You’re not alone.

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Awkward situations are an integral part of university life; they occur every day for students, whether it be in lectures, at the supermarket or in the middle of a club. Frankly though, who knows what to do in these terrible, unavoidable circumstances?  Lifestyle provides some simple steps to help you emerge from your most embarrassing moments unscathed.

The Morning-After Lecture: So last night you had an extremely cringe-worthy, drunken conversation with someone on your course who you’ve barely spoken two words to since Freshers. Now, squinting through your jäger-induced headache, you see your NBF (New Best Friend) scurrying over in the hope that you really meant that you could be lecture buddies for the rest of the year. The moral thing to do is to smile, move your bag and gesture to the empty seat next to you. The way to escape awkwardness for the remainder of the semester, however, is to suddenly jump up, ‘dash to the toilet’, return to the other side of the lecture theatre and ensure you’re out of there and on a Magic Bus quicker than the lecturer can say, ‘Any questions?’.  A little Mean Girls-esque, but it could save you hours of awkward situations sat side by side in Samuel Alexander.

The Supermarket Struggle: You’re taking an innocent stroll through Sainsbury’s, contemplating what to have for dinner and bam! – your flat mate’s annoying friend hones in on you from the other end of the cereal aisle. Whilst the person with a conscience would force themselves to endure 120 seconds worth of painful conversation, the awkwardness avoider will take this advice: create a distraction. It is vital that you always carry something in your hand, such as a bag of carrots or a shopping list. Then, you can pretend that you’ve picked up the wrong item/forgot something on your list, sigh to yourself, then bolt out of the aisle as fast as your hungover legs can handle. Fool-proof.

The Conquest Come-Again:  It was a bad night in Sankey’s last week, and you ended up going home with someone who evidently looked a lot more attractive after seven double vodkas. Now you’re enjoying your night in Tiger and who appears? Well, your ‘previous’ of course. This really is a crap situation because you don’t actually want to come into contact with them again, but simultaneously want to look calm, collected and pretty damn hot. The only thing to do is work it: turn to your friend and engage in what looks like the most witty, interesting conversation known to man, do your best catwalk strut* into White Room, and then breathe a sigh of relief.

(*NB: if you trip up, skip the White Room and head straight for the exit, as this awkward situation can only be avoided by hibernating at home for the rest of the night).