My Neighbour Errol- The Stupid Face
Errol always loves to tease and provoke others. This is common knowledge. But there are those occasions when there is an extra special joy he gets out of making someone truly uncomfortable. When this happens, when he knows he has pushed someone’s buttons, or has rendered them into an uncomfortable panicked silence, something truly magical happens.
Wait…did I say magical? I meant infuriating. A glint will enter his eyes, his mouth will widen in an open smile, his head will bob from side to side in delight, and an air of extreme smug joy will permeate the air. I have come to call this: The Stupid Face. Beware it. It feeds off your embarrassment.
At first, there was no way to predict when the stupid face would appear. But I have studied its ways over the last few months and I have learned much.
Sometimes it takes the form of an incredibly uncomfortable question. Sometimes it’s calling you out for being awkward with another person (sometimes with the person in that room). Sometimes it’s just talking about his own bodily functions.
Whatever the reason, the result is always the same. He does not even need to be looking at you to know he has succeeded. He will sense the awkward vibes in the room, and he will rejoice. He’ll sit there, bouncing in victory, or he’ll simply walk out of the room, satisfied with the work he has done.
No one is safe. If you have weaknesses of any sort, the stupid face will find them. Even Errol’s daughters have been victims of the Stupid Face. It knows no age. It knows no gender. It only knows discomfort.
Defending yourself won’t help. It sneaks up on you. There I will be, desperately attempting to dig myself out of the grave Errol so lovingly dug for me, and suddenly I will look over at him and there it will be in all of its smug glory. The Stupid Face.
Silence doesn’t work either. In fact, if anything, it makes it worse, for The Stupid Face will sense that it has truly worked its way deep into your soul.
If you are truly unlucky, you will also earn the Stupid Laugh. It is a verbalization of the Stupid Face, and only cements your doom. The jerkish cackle says it all: Errol got you, and there is nothing that will diminish his enjoyment of it.
Whether I’m sitting with him in person, or talking on the phone, I can sense it now without even having to look at it. I try to ignore it. I try to shrug it off. But it’s no use. The moment I see it, I am filled with the embarrassed frustration that once again I have fed the Stupid Face and the urge to punch it away is almost uncontrollable.
Unfortunately, much like Big Foot, it is elusive and nearly impossible to photograph. The closest I have been able to capture is towards the end of this video (go to 5:35). As a bonus, you also get to witness Errol looking like he’s about to vomit. Right after that, we get a glimpse of the infuriating stupid face.
Study it well. When it comes for you, you too will feel the shame and embarrassment of being duped by Errol. Someday I may find a way to get revenge. Until then, I will endure the presence of The Stupid Face. But my time will come. Oh..it will.