August 05, 2009
Karaoke, ME News, Vol. 2, Issue 31
It isn’t often I get to show my silly side at work. It isn't often that I want to, either. Too much of the time, I submit to strained niceties, even when they are especially not warranted.
So, the 100th year Anniversary Celebration Picnic wasn’t something I was looking forward to, in general. I was especially not looking forward to it this week, with so many recent serious office conflicts circulating through our ranks. It only made the dreading worse when I received the notice of “forced fun.” Truthfully, the notice didn’t really say “forced fun.” It really said “Karaoke.”
Luckily, I was reminded of an incident where my parents and my brother’s in-laws got around the mandatory sing-for-fun problem by choosing a minimally lyric-ed little ditty. Following in their footsteps, I brilliantly checked to see if perhaps this karaoke company had “Tequila!” The song, that is. The liquid would have been very helpful, but quite frowned upon, for sure. Sadly, they didn’t have it.
I tried to convince my closest co-worker to just pick something from the book with me. She wasn’t cooperating, and her reasons were understandable. However, realizing that at some point everyone would be probably be severely pressured into warbling, I came up with a contingent plan. I decided to prepare for disaster rather than allow myself to be blindsided by it. I got together with a buddy from another department, and here is how we decided to play it.
Perusing the huge and intimidating list of potential ways to embarrass ourselves, we found ourselves faced with about a fifteen-year age-gap problem. Finally, we briefly settled on Johnny Cash’s Folsom Prison Blues, but kept looking just in case we found something way better. A few pages later, we found our true songbird calling under Children’s Tunes, and locked it down with a knuckle tap.
The forced-to-be-silly-in-front-of-your-co-workers side of me was temporarily placated with the absolute ease of the lyrics. Then the regular semi-evil side took over.
I tracked down the Karaoke Maven, and shared with her this plan:
Before our song began, I wanted to have ample time to ask everyone to please stand, remove their hats, and raise their right hand. The intention was to make it appear as if we were going to sing the National Anthem or recite the Pledge of Allegiance. My cohort would stand there with his hand over his heart, appropriately looking nervous.
Then, we’d cued the songstress to hit it. Seriously, how can you not do the Hokey Pokey if you’re already standing?
Hey, if I’m gonna be forced to have fun, I’m gonna do my best to take everyone else along on that joy ride with me!
To our credit, we also scoped out the lyrics for Folsom Prison Blues, changing the part where Johnny laments, “I’m stuck in Folsom Prison,” to the name of our division. It’s always good to have a back-up plan… for an encore, of course.
Two more brave people join our hokey little hoaxy group at the last minute.
Most everyone stood up; a good number sat down when they realized what our gig was.
To sum it up, about 50% of our coworkers ended up compellingly engaged, putting their whole self in – and wasn’t that what it was all about, anyway?
In this issue: Karaoke, Portmanteau, Viewing the World Through Another's Eyes.
Now Posted: Quiet, and Quietly, Faith, Current & value, Poetry 2009.
Posted by jaselin at August 5, 2009 03:07 PM