Friday, November 11, 2005

Just Call Me Pavlov

I have a little story to share about the nature of conditioning. This might be one that's gonna disqualify me from ever running for an elected office, but it's equal parts funny and embarrassing so I'll share it anyway. As a quick recap for those unfamiliar with biology or psychology Pavlov was the guy who conditioned dogs to drool by ringing a bell every time he fed them. Ring Bell, Give Food, Dog Salivates - Repeat several times. Eventually ringing the bell alone causes the dogs to drool even without the sight or smell of food. Get it? Got it. Good!
Last night I was over at church with my small group setting up our booth for Market of Hope tonight. Basically we were stapling burlap fabric to a wooden frame to create a mock African hut. Problem was, we miscalculated how much burlap we needed and ran out halfway through the project. Tony was going to run to JoAnn Fabric to buy some more, but he's the tallest in our group and needed to help with the roof assembly, so I went instead but I had to take Tony's car since he drove us to church. So I drove to the store, bought the fabric, checked out, got back to the car, and got in the passenger side. As I tossed my bag into the back seat and reached for the seatbelt, I suddenly realized - "Wait a minute: I'm Driving!" I even had the keys in my hand! I burst out laughing at my own stupidity and was laughing even harder when I noticed there was someone sitting in the car across from me giving me very odd looks as I exited the car and got into the driver's seat, laughing at myself the whole time. (Seriously, I must have looked like a total loon.) I don't know if I was just really tired or if I'm just classically conditioned to get into the passenger side of Tony's car - either way it ranks up there as the stupidest thing I've done* in quite a while. I was still laughing about it when I got back to church so I shared the story with my small group who really enjoyed laughing with me about it, and now you can too (I think that's the sign of a good small group - you can be openly stupid and they love you anyway).
And if anyone else has stupid stories to share to make me feel a little better, I'd love to hear them! Happy Friday!!

*This would probably be the stupidest thing I've done in several months, but over Halloween weekend Emily, Tony and I went up to Spring Grove, IL to go through the world's largest corn maze and I had a hilarious incident of trying to drink a whole mouthful of very hot Hot Apple Cider. I ended up spewing the whole thing all over the ground - accompanied by gales of laughter - in a most unladylike spectacle. What can I say? I'm a spazz.


Jason said...

Cars make people do stupid things.

There's the time I stopped at a public mailbox to drop off some mail, got out, left the car running, dropped off the mail, got back to the car and realized I had LOCKED it. Locked car, still running. Since we only had one car at the time, Jess had to jog something over half a mile to the mailbox where I was with the other key while I stood there in the street next to my running car.

Of course, I'm the same guy who broke into my own car twice in high school because I locked my keys in it. Once right in front of my own house (which was also locked, with the key in the car). So perhaps I'm not a great example.

Lauren said...

At least you didn't have an embarassing issue with an automatic seatbelt. That would have been sad.

Here's me: