Here's a personal narrative I wrote a year back:
Note to self: Never put my money where my mouth is
Time and time again, my childhood has consisted of one embarrassment after another. It was clear, at a young age, that I was very prone to setting myself up for disaster. It’s almost like a curse; one that‘s never seemed to let up in my life. Just when I think nothing can go wrong, my fat mouth has to open up a new can of worms, and I helplessly wait for my punishment to follow. One such scarring moment was when I made a silly bet that would ultimately revoke my man card. I was foolish enough to let my ego get the best of me, and the price I paid would have been devastating for any pubescent 6th grade boy in the process of becoming a man.
It was my firm belief that if I put my mind to it, I could finish any meal, no matter what the size. Boy was I wrong. As my family and I sat down at our booth seats in Native New Yorker, I thought to myself, “ Man I am so hungry, I could eat a horse!”. I might have taken that expression a little too far. Feeling like quite the daring young man that I was, I snatched the menu and immediately skipped over the kid’s meal portion to the entrees. I had my eyes on the prize. Skimming over the myriad of dishes that would have stuffed a full grown adult, I found what I’ve been looking for; the meatball sandwich supreme. Little did I know, this sub was big enough to feed a family of four. Unfortunately, I let my stomach do all the thinking for me, and carelessly I ordered my sub without so much as a second thought.
My Mom immediately bursted out laughing, and suggested I find something that I could actually fit in my stomach. I felt very deeply offended by the notion that I couldn’t eat an entire meatball sub, so I pounded my fists down upon the table and made one of the biggest mistakes of my life by saying, “ How much do you wanna bet I could eat that sub?!”. I sealed my own fate with those words. Oh, how badly I long to go back, and eat those words rather than the sub , thus sparing myself a world of humility. My mother, intuitive as ever, smirked and created the terms to our bet and the conditions were the following: should I eat the sub, my mom will pay me five dollars cash, however, should I fail to do so, I must run around the park in our apartment complex twice, hollering " I'm a little ballerina" while wearing around my waist a tutu. You’d think that five dollars could never be worth that much of a risk, but you underestimate how extremely hell bent I was on eating that sub. My self confidence prevented me from evaluating the possibility that I could very well end up in a tutu. Shoot, the very idea of wearing one of those alone should have scared me away. Perhaps that was my Mom’s intention by threatening me with the tutu, but of course my stubbornness wouldn’t allow me to reason.
I stuck to my bet, absolutely positive that the sub will be no obstacle for me. When the waiter brought us our food, and set down the monstrosity that was my sub in front of me, I took a deep breath. Whatever certainty I had about tackling this gargantuan of a meal had vanished. Instead I began feeling sick. Bite after bite, I struggled to eat what seemed to be growing even larger and larger. The sub was so colossal, I had to resort to using a knife and fork. My family watched, plates all licked clean, as I shoved what more I could into my rupturing gut. With little more than half the sub to go, I surrendered, nearly passing out right then and there. My mom knew best, and now it was my duty to be a man of my word, so she could bask in the glory of watching me learn my lesson.
Upon arriving to our home, I secretly hoped my mom would forget the bet we made. There was no such luck. She brought out the tutu right away, as if she had been planning this all day, and told me to change into it. My stomach sank, realizing that this was really happening. To make matters worse, she even took the liberty of bringing her digital camera, so that she could immortalize the moment forever. Luckily her battery was low, so she could only snap off a few photos rather than recording it all on video. Before I knew it, I was in the tutu, and praying that nobody would be around to see me make a fool out of myself. I slipped on a pair of rollerblades, in hopes of making two trips around the park faster than I could on foot. That hardly made a difference, for the few minutes that I spent skating around the park in the tutu, shouting “I‘m a little ballerina”, and degrading myself to the likes of an utter buffoon, really felt like several hours of excruciating torment.
Although this may be engraved into my mind permanently, I now have something to remind myself to never forget to evaluate the situation before jumping to any conclusions or making rash decisions. If I’m ever feeling sure of myself, to the point that I feel the need to bet on it, the last thing I’ll do is risk losing my man card again. You can count on that.