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Awkward moments happen all the time – and to some folks more than others! For anyone who has ever wished that the ground would open up and swallow them, National Awkward Moments Day is a celebration of all of those ridiculous moments that are filled with bumbling, bungling and tons of embarrassment.

From walking out of a public toilet with toilet paper stuck to a shoe, to realizing you’ve been speaking to someone every day for a year and don’t actually know their name, life is full of these painful and loathsome experiences. Or for those who get easily tongue tied and say the wrong thing, National Awkward Moments Day is perfect for not only embracing this debacle, but celebrating it!

History of National Awkward Moments Day

Although no one has taken credit for the founding of National Awkward Moments Day (perhaps that would be too awkward!), many people have commented on how interesting it is that National Awkward Moments Day is celebrated right on the heels of St Patrick’s day. Is it possible that some awkward moments might occur during a walk of shame the next morning while dressed as a leprechaun?

National Awkward Moments Day does boast a mascot though: the awkward turtle. The phenomenon of the awkward turtle was first documented around 2005. This two-handed gesture that silently indicates extreme embarrassment without having to actually say any words.

The awkward turtle gesture seems to have originated from sign language and grew in use throughout pop culture in the late 2000s. And who knows? Maybe there’s a possibility that the awkward turtle was an impetus for the creation of National Awkward Moments Day.

Awkward moments can certainly be responsible for turning the cheeks red or causing the desire to disappear into thin air. But, on National Awkward Moments Day, it’s the time to embrace and show appreciation for all of that awkwardness.

After all, to be human is to also sometimes be awkward. Even the most put-together of people have their moments where they fall up the stairs (like Jennifer Lawrence on the red carpet) or have a “wardrobe malfunction” in front of millions of fans (à la J Lo at the Super Bowl).

So, if anything awkward happens on National Awkward Moments Day, be sure to see the humor of the situation, and have a good laugh about it, before moving on to the next one!

How to Celebrate National Awkward Moments Day

Celebrate National Awkward Moments Day by getting started with some of these ideas:

Laugh at Your Own Awkwardness

One way to enjoy National Awkward Moments Day is to normalize being awkward. After all, not everyone can be cool as a cucumber all of the time! If something weird happens on this day, laugh it off and embrace it. Or, even better, share some of those stories of awkward moments with friends, coworkers or family members so that everyone can get a good laugh!

Watch a Movie with Awkward Characters

Perhaps one way to celebrate National Awkward Moments Day might be to be reminded that there are other awkward people in the world too! Check out some of these films that feature awkward protagonists or other characters:

  • Lars and the Real Girl (2007). It’s hard to imagine Ryan Gosling being awkward, but this movie does it when his character strikes up a relationship with…a doll.
  • It’s Kind of a Funny Story (2010). Various awkward characters emerge in this story about a teenage boy who checks himself into a psychiatric ward for the weekend.
  • The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012). The term “wallflower” has been used to name those people who stand by the wall at a gathering but never get asked to dance, and this movie addresses some of these awkward teenage moments.
  • Sixteen Candles (1984). Featuring a girl who longs for a date with a dream boy, this movie offers a glimpse into some of the best cast of awkward teenage characters, including those played by Joan Cusack, Anthony Michael Hall and Gedde Watanabe.

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