It's Not Funny! :)
This once was a huge problem for me--whenever I'd get up in front of the class to present a speech, I'd get so nervous that I couldn't speak. Of course, I couldn't just not make noise, so the moment I opened my mouth to try to say something, I would start laughing.
It was awful! My face would turn beet red and I would stand up there laughing uncontrollably. Other people would start laughing as well, which made it even more impossible to get a word in edgewise, so I'd waste the ten minutes alloted for my speech giggling. Needless to say my grades always reflected that!
It hit an all-time low one day in eight grade, when we were required to write an alternate ending to a story we had read in class. I loved this assignment, because writing was something we rarely did in the class and the idea of it all was so much fun! Mine was a bit long, but I loved it and couldn't wait to have the teacher read it, until she said we had to go up in front of the class and summarize it.
My heart dropped to the ground and I felt my mind race for some way to get out of this ordeal. But of course, there was no escape and when it was my turn, I could already feel the laugh teasing the corners of my lips. I stood at the makeshift podium and tried to calm down, tried to remember it wasn't like anyone was listening to what I was saying. My writing has always been a rather personal thing, so sharing it with a bunch of unsympathetic morons in my eight grade LA class wasn't very appealing. I took a deep breath and began speaking, got halfway through a sentence, and burst out laughing.
Now, in my class, we had a girl who was hearing impaired and in order to hear us, she had to have a speaker-headset thing up on the podium. I was laughing so hard, and fumbling with my papers trying to find something to say, that I didn't really see the headset and suddenly knocked it over. It hit the ground and the batteries came flying out--I think it may have broke. When I'm really nervous, it's also important to know I apologize--a lot! So I was up there laughing and apologizing and trying to stick the batteries back in the headset AND trying to summarize my story. It was terrible, and everyone in my class found it amazingly funny when the teacher eventually told me to sit down, my time was up. Everyone applauded and I never felt so self-conscious in my life. I sat back down at my desk and wanted to scream.
I also wanted to scream when I got my assignment back and had gotten a B on it. Regardless of the fact I had written more than a page, and probably written a lot better than a bunch of the people in my class (not to toot my own horn or anything!) I had gotten the worst grade in the class, besides the kid who didn't do it, because of my oral presentation. Since then, I've taught myself not to get nervous in front of people, and I haven't laughed in front of crowds since. I still turn red sometimes though!