Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Stage a Karaoke Revolution

Last week I was at a birthday party in my apartment. My roommate decided that her dream birthday party for the year involved 20 or 30 people singing karaoke in our tiny apartment in the middle of the building.

I was watching people from a corner until they found me and handed me the microphone so I could sing "Cecilia," and it was so interesting to see how different people handled the pressure to get up and make fools out of themselves. While some people were grabbing for the microphone and others just accepted it with good grace, there was one group of girls who stayed very quiet on the couch and simply wouldn't take the microphone for the longest time - and when they finally did they stayed sitting.

I'm usually more of a sit on the couch and balk kind of girl. I don't like to jump up and dance (I hate dancing in front of people, which is part of some greater lack of confidence, I have no doubt). However, after spending the night watching some people jump up to make fools of themselves while others refused to hold a microphone while everyone was singing along anyway, I suddenly realized that the girl dancing her heart out to "Take a Chance on Me" looked less silly than the girls who couldn't be dragged from the corner. I'd always assumed it was the other way around when it was me sitting there protesting.

We don't all have that need for the spotlight. Some of us prefer to stay as far away from the spotlight as possible. But there is something inexplicably lovely about the woman who accepts that she is not a superstar and is still willing to be brave enough to embrace that. Don't make people drag you there. On key or not, dancing or no, sometimes all it takes is a willingness to take a chance - to decide to shine in the spotlight if someone puts you there, even if it's the last place you think you want to be. You may be better suited to that color of light than you ever expected to be.

9 comments:

Lis said...

Being a recovering couch sitter, I have to say- a lot of the times, couch sitters really wish they wouldn't be, and they determine they won't be, but they are. Sometimes, the only thing that will fix it, is to grow older. Growing older fixes many things- unfortunately, when we are cured from couch sticking, then we sometimes forget what it was like and try to force others out before they are ready. But, if we could get another coucher to get up one minute sooner, then we would have made some progress.

Janssen said...

Eek.

I am always the couch sitter. I get panicky just THINKING about karaoke. Will keep this in mind next time.

Meg said...

Don't worry, I'm not judging. Just observing. :) We're all in wall flower mode together when it comes to this - unless we're the dancing type.

Julie said...

In the case of Karaoke, you have to have a lot of self confidence to stand up. In your environment, college, there is pressure to fit in. I am in agreement with the previous comment. Some times you just need to grow up (as in the process you usually become the true you), or build one brave experience upon another.

In the mean time, I advise couch sitters: find a friend to help you build confidence in scary experiences. Surround yourself with uplifiting peers. Before you know it, you will be saying, "Been there, done that!"

Life is much more enjoyable if you experience it. I say, Get up off the couch and do your best. That is all we can ask of you! The rest of the world will honor your efforts. And to those who may criticize (like a mean comment on another post), they most likely are not your friend with your best interest in heart.

Lin said...

My willingness to participate in such things usually has to do with who else is in the room with me. I hate to admit that, but it is true. Although I am finding that I care less and less as I get older, as previous comments have mentioned.

So I'm on the fence, so to speak. Plus, you know, I can't really resist singing an ABBA song.

Miri said...

I'm the same. If, for example, I were on said couch with you and Megan, I would have zero problem singing karaoke since we'd probably all be being ridiculous anyway. But any other time, I'd be as far in the corner as I could get. And probably squishing myself down into the cushions trying to avoid people's notice. Life would be so much easier if we could learn to only care about what WE think of ourselves.

Krilafis said...

The only place I would sing Karaoke is in a bar. I know that because that is fact. I will only sing Karaoke in a bar. It doesn't matter who is there (I sang in front of my crush one time one a date and again in a bar full of strangers. In both,I was horrible. I am tone deaf.) Why that is, I have yet to determine.

Krilafis said...

Um my propensity to sing in bars...not my inability to sing. and for those of you who do not know me. I don't drink either so being intoxicated doesn't apply here. Unless you call riding the groove train and being caught up in the "moment" intoxicating. Which, I do.

Nathalie Shorten said...

I've never done Karaoke but I've done rock band (the singing part) and quite enjoyed the moment. But then there were other silly work friends doing the same thing so that was okay. I couldn't do that in my ward or anything like that.