For those of you who aren’t familiar with it, the awkward turtle is a hand gesture used to signal an awkward moment in a conversation or interaction with someone. The hope is that its use will cause a twitter of laughter throughout the group, therefore diffusing the awkwardness and restarting the conversation. It can also be used as a silent signal of awkwardness, unseen to the origin of the awkwardness. Someone has been kind enough to demonstrate the awkward turtle on YouTube:
Peter introduced me to the awkward turtle about a month ago, but its use really took off during the ski trip this past weekend, where the awkward turtle made several appearances after I explained its use to some of my friends. Over the weekend I also came up with a variation called the awkward whale. In situations where the degree of awkwardness is so overwhelming that the awkward turtle is insufficient, it can be escalated to the awkward whale, which basically involves windmilling your arms forward in a scaled-up, full-body version of the awkward turtle.
(Incidentally, I cannot for the life of me find any information about the true origin of the awkward turtle. If you have any insight, please comment here.)
Edit: It was explained to me by Yar, Jan, and Peter that the turtle is meant to be flailing around on his back, hence the awkwardness. I apologize for any confusion I may have caused over the weekend by saying that it was a sea turtle swimming around. Which, as Yar pointed out, is not very awkward.
Anyway, the ski trip was super fun this year, and I think I even somehow improved at snowboarding, which is pretty remarkable considering it’s been a year since I last went. We also played a lot of Rock Band, where I got through a few songs on the Hard difficulty. It was the most accomplished weekend ever, basically.