awkward (ˈɔːkwəd) adj. 1. lacking dexterity, proficiency, or skill; clumsy. 2. ungainly or inelegant in movements or posture. 3. unwieldy; difficult to use. 4. embarrassing. 5. embarrassed. 6. difficult to deal with; requiring tact. 7. dangerous or difficult.
Did you know that there is no French word for ‘awkward’? There are, of course, several English words with no direct French translation – ‘fluffy’ being another example – but what this really means is that the French would struggle to understand the concept of what ‘awkward’ really means. And obviously there are many meanings. But maybe this is why/because the British are so awkward and the French just aren’t, with their kissing stranger as a greeting, and openness about nudity. Obviously these are just stereotypes, but it cannot be denied that awkward situations are just…awkward., and there’s no other way to describe it. However much you will a situation to not be awkward, there is no stopping it. There are so many things I want to talk to my ex-boyfriend about, like ‘what happened with that girl you were going to ask out a few months ago?’ or ‘did you mean it when you drunkenly told me I shouldn’t be with my current boyfriend?’, but I know it would be too awkward to discuss with him. Or when I was at a party where I only knew two people, they both went to the bar leaving me with one of their friends, and I was having to think of things to say to him when it was too loud to properly hear his responses. That was awkward. And I knew last year that if I tried to tell a boy that I liked him it would just cause awkwardness in maths lessons for eternity (or for a few weeks until Summer, after which I’d changed classes). But I think that sometimes, and maybe this really is a British thing, people create extra awkwardness. Like when someone nearly drove into my Mum’s car in the cinema car park, we could have got out and gone to queue for the film. But we thought it would be too awkward if we were next to them in the queue, so we waited a while before going in. There was no way I could have turned to that boy in a maths lesson and told him that he was the most attractive person I’d ever had the pleasure of meeting, but when I made two new friends in my German class, I could have just asked if they were a couple, rather than spending months awkwardly trying to figure it out. Because there are some situations where, if you really try, acting confident and smiling incessantly can carry you through. And if you can laugh with someone at how awkward a moment is, then you’re on to a winner. In year 9 a friendship group was forming and, as happens when you spend all day every day with the same people, there were often times when no one had anything to say, and one of us would just say ‘sooooo…..’ and everyone else laughed. It usually didn’t change anything, but laughter is better than silence. At least then it looks like you’re getting on and chatting.
I’m fairly sure I had more of a point to make when I started writing this, but a whole happened between me beginning and finishing, and I’ve forgotten what else I was going to say. Oops, that’s awkward.