Hi all! I’m Kate and I live (well not LIVE really but you know what I mean) over at Walking Kateastrophe. What I am most famous for are my “Kateastrophes.” They are the most requested feature on my own blog and I figured giving you one would probably be the best (and most embarrassing) way to introduce myself to all of you. And I’m going to start with a bang and tell you about the Kateastrophe to end all Kateastrophes. Some of you may have already heard this, and I apologize for the repeat, but it’s really the one that gives you an idea of just.how.stupid.I.really.am. And I still laugh every time.And it’s all about entertaining myself, really.

So, flashback to April, 2002. I have finally completed my requirements for my Fine Arts Degree in Music Dance Theatre from Brigham Young University. I’m finally a real adult and I’m proud of it. You should know that our small major was notorious around the Fine Arts Department for being loud and obnoxious, and we lived up to our reputation during the very long, very boring commencement.

Toward the very end of the ceremony, the dean was thanking everyone who had been involved in all the graduates’ achievements; the graduates themselves, their peers, their teachers and of course, their parents. It was at this point that my best gay buddy Clark leaned over and said to me “we should stand up and cheer for our parents.” Being the obnoxious MDT majors we were known to be, we stood up and whooped and hollered and cheered and drew all the attention to ourselves. And our humiliated parents, of course.

Then we sat down.

Only . . . when I sat down my chair . . . well . . . “scooched” backward.

Now, “federal regulations” require that any riser taller than about 3’ has to have “back support” to prevent individuals from falling off the risers. BYU had followed this rule to the absolute minimum. The “back support” was about the equivalent of a ruler held up by two ¼” dowels. So, when I “scooched” the back support “snapped.”

The back two legs of my chair were off the edge of the riser and I had no back support.

I.started.falling.off.the.six.foot.high.riser.

So, I did what any normal, flailing, falling college graduate would do. I grabbed on to Clark to support me. Only, it didn’t work. Clark’s chair “scooched” and he started falling.

So Clark did what any normal, flailing, falling college graduate would do and he grabbed on to Cindy, the girl next to him. Only THAT didn’t work. Now she had been a little smarter and saw the fall coming and held on to her chair for dear life. There was a loud “SSSCCREEEEAAACCCCCHHH” sound before she AND her chair started going over the edge.

Now, SOMEHOW, after losing my chair to the floor below, I managed to grab on to the underside of the riser and hold on, but, my graduation gown flew over my head and I was hanging, butt down, from the riser with my gown covering my face. My calves were the only thing not suspended in mid-air, and probably the only thing that saved me from falling all the way down.

Clark was not so lucky. He started flailing even more and somehow managed to grab on to the curtain of the theater and SLIDE down it to the floor, hitting with a thud.

Cindy and her CHAIR pitched sideways over the edge and landed RIGHT.ON.TOP.OF.CLARK. Face down, provocative style. By itself, it’s funny. But knowing that Clark was very, very gay, made it even funnier.

Clark and Cindy exited stage right as quickly as they could and it probably took me about twenty minutes to get my laughter under control and start breathing normally again. I still can’t believe that I wasn’t mortified . . . I just thought (and still do) that it was HILARIOUS.

Later that night my family was laughing about what had happened and each person who had been in the audience was telling their reaction. There was a fun combination of laughter and hysterical fear, but my personal favorite was my brother Sean’s reaction. (Keep in mind that I went to Brigham Young University and 98% of the attendees and their parents are tried and true Mormons.) Sean, seeing my fall says OUT LOUD from the SECOND ROW of the HUGE MORMON FILLED THEATRE in a LOUD VOICE:

“My stupid sister just F***ING fell off the F***ING back row.”

I’m pretty sure the BYU Honor Code Police are still looking for me to strip me of my diploma for that one. Shhh. Don’t tell them where to find me.

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