Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Karaoke? Kill Me.

I hate karaoke more than any drunkreational activity in the world.

Loathe. Abhor. Detest. Despise.

I wish I enjoyed it. Really, I do. People get so into it. I envy their enthusiasm. They live, breathe, die karaoke. They spend their days plotting ways to swindle friends into karao
keing - or they go solo to belt it out at bars.

Perhaps these lonely karaoke lovahs didn’t make the American Idol cut. Perhaps they miss their high-school-musical glory years. Perhaps they enjoy getting wasted and showing off (or absolutely embarrassing themselves) in front of strangers.

But whatever their reason, kudos to them. They thrive on stage.

I, on the other hand, cower away from it.

Maybe it’s cause I’m so self-conscious - I don’t like being in the spotlight. The lights are so bright I can’t see and certainly can’t think! In 8th grade I had four lines - literally - as Auntie Em in Oz. The second I walked out, they completely left my brain. I just kept repeating “Dorothy! Dorothy!” (Hey, at least I remembered her name.)

But my most obvious anti-karaoke reason is probably the simple fact that my voice sucks. Awful

Or maybe I’m just never quite drunk enough to shake all that fright outta me.

Aww hell, that’s a lie. I do recall two times that I’ve karaoked. The first was in Provincetown, MA, quite a few years ago. Buddies who witnessed my belligerence that evening can attest that it was pure, unadulterated liquid courage that enabled me to slur my way through “It’s Raining Men” (at least I think that’s what it was). And yes, drag queens were involved.

The second unfortunate occurrence was at a bar in college (do any of you DZ girls recall?)

Both times are big, bad blurs. And while I’m sure my intoxication level had a hand in my forgetfulness, more likely methinks I blocked dem bad mems from my mind.

Who wants to relive a night of karaoke? NOT I.

This past Sunday I went to Kenny’s Castaways on good ole Bleecker St. Little did I know there was live.band.karaoke and a room full of middle-aged men and women trying to reenact their Select Chorus days.

Some peeps were good. Others were ho-rrific. But after suffering through “Smooth Operator”, “My Sharona”, and “Crazy”, I was left seriously wondering (said in Charlotte’s WHERE’S THE RING voice):

’s the appeal? WHAT’s the APPEAL????

Well, in defense of Kenny’s (and a few singing friends), I can appreciate the draw of crooning to a live, jamming band.

Wrinkly, bespectacled men and khaki donning, camel-toe
d women transformed. There on that shitty little stage, it was possible for them to fulfill their adolescent dreams of being in a bright lights, big city band.

They could bow and nod wave and their ears and eyes could swell with audience love - even if it was limited to slurred shouts and off-kilter applause.

The divey Bleecker Street staple became, lo and
behold, the Madison Square Garden of their tween dreams. They had made it! Like magic!

But really - it was ridiculous (and not in a good way) to see these oldies percolate, sway their hips, grind on down à la Elvis for the (pathetic) little audience. But...but...I must say that my time spent at band-accompanied-karaoke was vastly more bearable than the other omnipresent option.

Old-school-tape-deck-80s-TV karaoke? Holy shit vomit.

Most common folk (as in not GaGa), cannot, apparently, read and sing at the same time. They never know the tune. They miss words, mess up lines. And that little music note that bounces on top of the words makes them downright dizzy! (Or maybe it’s the 151 they’ve been sipping in preparation for their debut.)

They undoubtedly (drunkenly, sloppily) make out with the microphone - the same microphone that hundreds upon hundreds of similarly sloshed pseudo singers have made out with.

They sway back and forth to the beat, thinking they look good - when really they look like 6th graders at their first school dance.

(Michelle Carberry, however, I must exclude. She is a Queen Karaoke fo sho - even plays the tambourines while she’s singing.)

I feel so very sorry for these syncopating psychos who never had their moment to shine in the spotlight. Whose dreams of rocking in the real world were cut short by lack of talent.

But come on. You
’re hurting my ears.

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