Cheeky people, who embody the winky-face-tongue-out emoji and think they are HILARIOUS all the time, like to offer you one piece of advice before you perform in front of an audience: Don’t fall.

That’s it. That’s your only concern. Everything else is a simple fix: If you forget choreography, wing it. If you forget your lines, improv. If the laces on your ice skates break, skate over to the judges table in tears and they’ll probably let you start over. (Also, America will openly shun you forever.) (Like, she is basically a domestic terrorist.)

But don’t fall. Just don’t fall.

I, however, being a rebel and a free spirit and possibly a TAD BIT still drunk from the night before, no one knows for sure, did not heed this warning. No. I toppled like a hipster domino in an OK Go video.

But let’s rewind.

Now, these cheeky people. You know the guy from Groundhog Day who keeps warning Bill Murray to “watch out for that first step—it’s a DOOZY!” Yeah, that guy. Ned or something. That guy is like the poster child for cheeky people. He should have his own emoji.

 

ghogday

 

Cheeky people are the same people who tease you about personal things for no reason and then expect you to laugh along and not slowly die inside. They tease you about your weight or hygiene or the messiness of your house/car. “Wow, look at all these wrappers! You sure hit the Arby’s drive-thru a lot, don’t you? I thought you were looking fatter! Ha ha! Ahhh, I’m just kiddin’.”

These are the people who own a stupid, awful, dumbass dog that jumps up on you, leaving muddy paw prints all over your khakis every time you come to visit, and simply respond with, “Oh sorry, Maxie just gets so excited.”

These are the people who join your neighborhood’s HOA board of directors and leave passive aggressive little bitchy notes on your door when you don’t remove your trash cans from the curb precisely .38 seconds after the garbage man drives away.

These are the people who eagerly ask you the origin of your last name, even if it’s, like, SMITH or something.

These are the people who still pay for groceries with checks. CHECKS.

These are the people who brag endlessly about their ugly piece of disgusting fecal matter on wheels HYBRID CAAAAARRRRRRRRRs. I mean, I have a hybrid. But if I ever talk about it in conversation you better hit me across the face with a 2×4 and then visit the Prehistoric Forest.

These are the people who say things like, “I just love that John Mayer, he’s so talented.”

These are the people whose entire DVR is Jeopardy.

These are the people who have called it “Foxfire” a shocking number of times.

These are the people who are FLABBERGASTED that you are so pale.

These are the people who respond to a simple unassuming query with an aggressive “I don’t know, CAN YOUUUU??”

These are the people who comment in paragraph-form on Facebook statuses that they have NOTHING TO DO WITH. AND DOES NOT CONCERN THEM.

These are the people who think every sickness including cancer and AIDS and butt herpes can be solved by gargling warm salt water. THAT NEVER WORKS. STOP TELLING ME TO DO THAT. IT’S DISGUSTING.

Wait, maybe that last one is just my grandma.

Anyway, you know the people I’m talking about. The people you’d slap on a regular basis if slapping wasn’t listed under “assault” on criminaldefenselawyer.com. I mean, he got the domain; he probably knows what he’s talking about.

 

shawnslap

 

Back to the stage stuff. I used to perform on stage all the time. Singing performances, dance competitions, theater productions, recitals — if there was a stage, I was on it. And I was GOSH DAMN FABULOUSaccordingtomymom.

Though, my fabulousness has somewhat faded since I was 12; I really think that was when I hit my stride. It’s been pretty much downhill ever since. I remember turning 14… hittin’ the video poker… lightin’ up a cig… reminiscing about the glory days with some Nam veterans in a Laughlin casino… It would just never be the same. That’s probably why child stars grow up to kill people.

But I digress.

Two weeks ago I found myself back on stage. I don’t even remember agreeing to dance in this particular show; it just sort of happened. Sort of like when people say, “OMMGGGG YOU TOTALLY HAVE TO BE IN MY WEDDING” and before your mouth even forms the word “sure,” you find yourself passed out in a banquet hall in a tacky bridesmaid dress having given the waitress all of your cash in a transactional understanding that she’d keep bringing you wine, except that bitch DISAPPEARED, leaving you broke and out of wine, but it’s probably for the best because that cheap stuff leaves you with a guaranteed two-day hangover. And that’s best-case scenario.

Whirlwind or not, I was excited to be apart of the dance showcase. We all worked super hard in a studio with a serious lack of air conditioning and when show night arrived, we all felt prepared. I was ready. It was time.

Then, someone – A CHEEKY PERSON – peeked backstage and said it. Those dreaded words:

“Good luck tonight! DON’T FALL. HA HA. Ahhh, just kiddin’. Have fun.” *disappears in douche smoke*

I don’t know who it was or what branch of Cheeky People they were registered to, but if I’d seen their face, I assure you the expression would have been winky-face-tongue-out.

My dances started off well. Ballet solo: Done. Ensemble ballet: Done. The show was going perfectly.

Then came my tap solo.

“Nah, the floor won’t be that slippery,” I had said the previous day to a fellow tap number. Sure, Lisa. Sure. It’s basically sandpaper. It’ll be like dancing on tar. It’s like a big tar pit. Dinosaurs are dead out there. There’s no possible way that someone wearing smooth metal on the bottom of their feet could slip on polished wood. It’s a scientific impossibility. Good call, Lisa.

WELLLLLLLLLLLLL I slipped.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r4B8ea8qt-g?rel=0

 

Yes. I slipped on stage for the first time EVER. I engaged in a violent struggle with that cruel bitch, Gravity, and she took me down hard. Actually, I was really upset when I saw the video. Let me tell you, it felt a LOT WORSE than how it looked in the recording. When I watched it back, I was like, “Pfffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffft. That wasn’t that bad.”

So, my dignity remains intact. My butt is bruised, but my ego isn’t, and that’s far more important. I got the biggest applause of the night for falling — and while I realize it was Pity Applause, it was applause nonetheless.

…Okay you can stop replaying the video now.

Hey.

Hey stop.

I SAID STOP. YOU’VE SEEN ENOUGH.