Faint memories

If you’re familiar with my “memory lane” series then you know they’re usually about hilariously embarrassing stuff happening to me. Well, this one is different, for once.

OK, just kidding. It’s about hilariously embarrassing stuff happening to me. Rejoice, you heartless crowd that laughs at my pain!

I draw my inspiration from fellow blogger Ria, who had written about her near-fainting experience.

Because I have no shame whatsoever, I not only steal her topic, I also “one-up” her with my story. Unlike Ria’s half-hearted almost-faint, I actually managed to faint in a spectacularly humiliating way. Here goes…

In case any of you need an illustration for “goes”

Once again, this was during my Copenhagen Business School years. Along with my studies I was working as a freelance journalist for the university newspaper’s English section – CBS Cornet. I wrote about diverse topics like the university’s internationalisation efforts, international students and the different international programs CBS offered.

One winter day I was biking to the editor-in-chief’s office to discuss an article I was working on. The day was rather cold and I was wearing a hat, scarf, coat and gloves – pretty standard issue equipment for cold winter days. Upon walking inside I felt a bit overheated, due to the temperature contrast between the outside world (winter) and the inside (a lot less winter).

I made my way to the editor’s office. We launched into a discussion about sources and angles for my article (the angle was probably “internationalisation”). After a minute of conversation I started feeling…not-quite-right. My heart was racing and my head was spinning, and I wasn’t even a lead singer of a rock band singing about falling in love.

“Oh baby, you make me feel like I’m about to faint real bad!”

I tried to brave through the conversation, because paying attention to clear signals your body is sending to you is overrated. At some stage Bjørn (our editor) stopped abruptly, looked at me and said: “OK, Daniel, I just want to let you know that you’re as pale as a bed sheet and you’re sweating like crazy”.

Now, you know you’re in denial of your symptoms when other people start pointing out things you should be very capable of noticing on your own. If I were smart I’d have replied with: “Correct, Bjørn. All signs indicate that my physical condition is deteriorating at an alarming rate. Urgent measures are required to rectify the situation”. Interestingly, that’s also what I would have said if I were a robot.

As it happens, my actual reply was more along the lines of: “Guess I better lay off drugs. Hehe.”

Bjørn chimed in with some similarly offhand comment a la: “Yeah, cocaine will do that to ya”.

Drug abuse is such a light-hearted topic

Having poked fun at my pre-faint symptoms we continued our conversation…for about thirty seconds more. It was at this stage that I realised that Bjørn had been replaced by a blurry blob shape and that his indistinguishable words were coming at me from a tunnel hundreds of metres away.

I wiped a copious amount of sweat from my forehead and told the Bjørn-shaped blob that I’d like to go to the restroom to splash some cold water on my face. The blob let out some noises that sounded like approval. Encouraged by the blob’s supportive tone I proceeded towards the door in a determined, zig-zagging fashion.

I made it as far as the door. The last thing my conscious mind registered was a close-up image of my hand reaching out for the door handle. Then the door slowly slipped out of my field of vision as I fainted and fell backwards onto the floor.

Because I have never fainted before I was quite confused as to what had happened. I remember being semi-conscious, yet unable to open my eyes and feeling like I was lying under a truck filled with lead. I recall actually thinking I was dead and being upset at the unfairness of having died at such a young age.

Why me, oh misleadingly adorable harbinger of death, WHY ME?!

When I came to I was still on the floor. Bjørn was sitting behind me and lifting the top part of my body upwards. I vaguely remember him telling me about his healing experience as the medicine man in Australia, but in all honesty this could’ve very well been a figment of my after-faint mind. He gave me some water and sat me down on a chair to prevent me from attacking the floor of his office with my body for a second time.

In a few minutes I have made a full recovery. I visited the restroom and cleaned myself up. Thereafter, Bjørn and I completed our discussion about the newspaper article. Both of us have displayed incredible denial skills and to this day neither of us have spoken about the incident again. Well, until I did it in this post. Don’t you all feel special?

How about all of you? Any chronic fainters out there? Have you fainted in a public and embarrassing way? Do tell…


Entering this post into this week’s DudeWrite line up. Head on over to DudeWrite to check out some great posts from male bloggers.

29 thoughts on “Faint memories

  1. Waaaalll!
    I won’t fess up to the denial bit. Dealing with (self-)embarrased young CBS-students on a daily basis has taught me that the occasional near drug overdose, hissy fit, anxiety attack or full blown “FUCK YOU!” rebellion is best taken in your stride. Make a big deal of it, and they’re embarrased for weeks… and thus unproductive!
    Ignore shit, however, and they get their noses back to the grindstone in double time in order to save face.
    What can i say? It’s good to be the boss!


    • I had no doubt that there was a brilliantly clever evil motive behind that denial. And now you show your true colours – lime, red, and a hint of magenta.

      What I’m trying to say is: well played!


      • Bjørn Hyldkrog says:

        I can still do the “Mouhahaha!” laugh if it makes your exploited ass feel better. Just don’t go all woozy on me again. Barf like a man, if you have to! I can respect that (once someone’s licked my boots clean).
        Now man up! You’ve got a deadline!


  2. I’ve been to that fuzzy state where everything starts to get far away but never full on fainted. But I have been around a couple of people that have fainted. My wife goes out like a light when she sees blood so I’ve learnt that I need to be careful when I yell, “hey, come look at this!”


    • Hehehee so you must’ve learned it the hard way! I can recommend fainting, but only in the “you’ve got to try everything once” sense…not because it’s fun or anything 😉


  3. Hey Daniel, I loved this post!…very witty writing….the bit about ‘attacking the floor for a second time’ made me spit popcorn all over my laptop…
    I fainted once at a gig I played in a social club in Newcastle – not on stage fortunately – at the top of a flight of concrete stairs….luckily, my face broke my fall…


  4. I have never fainted to my knowledge, but I used to be a professional body piercer and saw people pass out all the time. I was amazing how many people would get up off my table would would just keel over. I got pretty good at seeing the signs and could catch them most of the time before they actually went down.


  5. I once fainted after sex. I drove 900 miles to see my girlfriend (she lived in Idaho, I in California) and the second I exited the car she pounced. I drove almost non-stop, not even stopping to eat.

    90 minutes later, we were spent. I walked down the hallway from her bedroom, and that’s about all I remember. I woke up, naked, bleeding, and in a strange house.

    …and now I’m going to have to write about this story in full. DAMN YOU.


  6. Daniel, I’m curious. Did you ever figure out what caused you to faint? No other symptoms?

    As men, we are very skilled at denial. Especially when it requires admitance to some sort of weakness.

    Enjoyed it!

    Michael A. Walker
    Defying Procrastination


    • Hey Michael…to be honest, have no clue. My best guess is the fact that I’d cycled very fast in freezing weather and then walked into a warm building. Sudden contrast in temperature combined with over-exertion? Evil faint-fairies? Your guess is as good as mine 😉

      Indeed. “Deny deny deny” is the motto to live by. Thanks for stopping by and happy you’ve enjoyed it!


  7. RiaMajumdar says:

    Ahem, ahem. Trying to one-up me now, are you? Did I mention the snarling ninja rats I have in my basement? (One-up your ninja monkeys and spread the plague too!) 😛
    Anyway, great post! Especially, the drug joke; had me laughing out loud.
    P.S. Thanks for the link. 🙂


  8. Can I just say once again how cleverly funny you are? You always make me laugh, and this time, unfortunately, you have me laughing at your expense. Can’t imagine why taking a seat never occurred to you as your blood pressure was plummeting, thereby delivering iinsufficient blood and oxygen to your brain. Oh, maybe that’s why you never thought to take a seat.Loved that you gave us a pictorial for “goes” and that you find cocaine a “light-hearted” topic. Who doesn’t?I’ve never fainted, but I came close years ago after a navel piercing. And sorry if that image just grossed you out, but I did say years ago.


    • Carrie Rubin Well thanks! I’m on the verge of blushing here, but that may well be a delayed after effect of fainting all those years ago. Something with blood and oxygen and some such. I almost forgot about your medical background, would’ve been great to have heard your blood pressure insights prior to fainting! ;)I don’t gross out easily and you’d have to do a lot worse than a navel piercing! Did you just stop at the one or get a few more? In any case, as long as your human-to-metal ratio isn’t above 50-50 you should be just fine.


      • Daniel Nest I’m happy to report I have a very respectable human-to-metal ratio. And unlike some of the guys around here, you cannot see through my earlobes. Do the inhabitants of Denmark find it necessary to put dime-sized holes in their earlobes like some of my American compatriots, or are you Danes more dignified than that?


      • Carrie Rubin Can’t say I’ve noticed an unusually high number of people with holes in their earlobes, but Danes aren’t averse to tattoos and piercings, so I’m sure there are plenty people who spend hours going through airport metal detectors here as well…


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