8 excruciatingly embarrassing brain fart moments that are more common than you think

These humiliating scenarios, if have happened to you, keep most of us awake at night

Mahnoor Vazir July 11, 2024

We've all been through it. The moment where our mind decides to take an unscheduled vacation, leaving us stranded in awkwardness. These brain farts (can also be referred to as “oopsies”), as they're so affectionately called, happen to the best of us. They make us question our sanity, our intelligence, and why we even bother trying to be functional adults. Even if you can’t believe you just did whatever humiliating thing you did, you needn’t be so hard on yourself, because trust me – it’s been done before (unless it’s something extremely specific to you in which case nothing can make you feel better). Here are eight hilariously mortifying brain fart moments that if have ever happened to you, either have you laughing at yourself or keep you up at night cringing.


The airport ‘you too’

Ah, the classic airport blunder. You're already stressed, juggling your carry-on, passport and overpriced duty-free chocolates.  The kind soul at the check-in desk hands you your boarding pass and says, “Safe flight!” Without missing a beat, you respond with, “You too!” Suddenly, you're wondering if they're about to hop on a plane to The Maldives after their shift. An awkward giggle later, you’re contemplating asking them if they have any tickets available to the most uninhabitable place on earth so that you can avoid human contact for the rest of your days. 


The unsolicited handshake

This one haunts me on a daily basis. Imagine you're at a party, holding a plate of snacks like it's your lifeline. Someone approaches, extends their hand, and your brain goes, “Oh, a handshake!” You enthusiastically grab their hand, while they stare at you in confusion because they just wanted the plate. Congratulations, you’ve not only failed to give them the snacks but also managed to look like an overeager fool. It’s worse if you don’t even know the person – which I didn’t. 


The romantic phone call

As an introvert, I avoid phone calls as much as possible. Making them, taking them, anything. More often than not, I’ve stared at my phone ringing, no intention of picking up even when fully able to do so. For someone who you’ll rarely find on the other end of a call, I still manage to bring an alarmingly high level of awkwardness to them. Ending a call is a minefield of potential embarrassments, but none quite as mortifying as the accidental declaration of love. You’re wrapping up a call with a colleague, discussing mundane work details, and as you hang up, the words slip out. “Love you, bye!” The silence on the other end is deafening. Now, you have to either pretend it didn’t happen or send a text explaining that you just have a lot of love to give... strictly platonically, of course. Extra “oops” points if you do this to a crush.


The accidental ‘Mama’

This one’s a rite of passage. It’s probably happened to every school-going child at least once. It’s more forgivable if it’s earlier on, but nevertheless, it could happen at any age. You’re in the middle of class, and in a moment of pure, unfiltered autopilot, you address your fresh-graduate teacher as “Mama.” The entire class erupts in laughter, and she gives you a tight-lipped smile and a look that says, “Do I look like a mother to you?”


The over-clarification 

It’s time for haircut and you call the salon for an appointment. They offer you a 11:50 slot. Your brain, desperate to avoid another humiliating misstep, asks, “A.M., right?” The receptionist’s pause is palpable as they probably consider explaining what humane working hours are to you. “Yes, 11:50 A.M.” You hang up, facepalming so hard you might need another appointment to fix the dent. The place isn’t run by vampires, why would they be providing service at midnight?


The laundry mishap 

Laundry brings the best of us to our knees. You’re sorting through your clothes, and in a moment of pure distraction, you toss your favourite tee into the trash instead of the hamper. You only realise your mistake when you spot the milk carton in your laundry basket. The shame of digging through the trash for your tee is only surpassed by the horror of realising your clothes now have chocolate stains on them AFTER you leave the house wearing them. 


The missing items

Everyone’s had a time where they’re frantically searching for a missing item, tearing the house apart. You’ve retraced your steps a dozen times trying to find your glasses, and finally, you walk past a mirror and get a glimpse of how frustrated you look... only to see them perched on your head. You can almost hear the universe laughing at you. This classic brain fart never fails to make you question the reliability of your cognitive faculties. It is also applicable to missing car keys that are sitting in the ignition, and phones that are at your ear mid call. And while you may not have an audience during this to make it EXCRUCIATINGLY embarrassing, sometimes being embarrassed by yourself is more than enough.


The unintentional criminal 

You’re at the store, trying to remember everything on your list. You absentmindedly pick up a pack of gum, intending to put it in your basket or trolley (I’m personally more of a trolley person myself), but somehow it ends up clutched in your hand for the rest of the shopping trip, and you forget it’s there. You breeze through the checkout and out the door, only to realise you’ve inadvertently shoplifted. Now you have to decide whether to go back and confess, risking an awkward encounter, or live with the guilt of your unintentional entry into a life of crime.

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