You Ma’am are No Madonna

I love to sing. Loud and proud. Belting out the words to the songs of the 80s and 90s as I cruise down the road doing my mama errands. In college we would sing constantly. I even got to go on stage with Dave Matthew’s Band when they were still just frat party performers. *This is my only claim to fame… unless you count the class where I was the only NON Va Tech football player.

My friends used to tell me how good I was… perhaps they were tone deaf. I came to realize several years ago that there was no “Island of Seals” rather “my lips are sealed”. And who knows how many other song lyrics I have wrong. My mumble singing which works fine for me began to be called out and so I retreated into the quiet recesses of my own vehicle when I was alone for the most part. But boy could I harmonize with Madonna and STP and Jack Johnson. It was fabulous.

Then came karaoke night… my great friend LOVES to do karaoke. So soon after moving to our neighborhood I ventured out with her to finally be able to “express myself” without the stares of all those Simon Cowle wannabes. I was so excited. Made myself up a stage name. Listened to a few drunken ballads by people who appeared to be singing with invisible buckets on their heads. Choosing the song was the hardest… but I was ready. I was going to prove that I still? had it.

I popped up on that stage. The smoke from the bar permeated the air… yes this classy joint still allows smoking in the bar. I was ready. The music started and it was like the DJ dude had warped the song and speed to some delusional super sonic stretched out but yet sped up out of range speed. I struggled to keep up. At one point say “wait THATS what she’s saying?” when the correct words zipped across the screen. I tried changing key, I tried closing my eyes. Eventually I gave into the Elaine from Seinfeld dance and quickly ran from stage when my set ended after an eternity.

Believe it or not I tried a few more times. Never got the rousing applause my friend did. Perhaps a few courteous finger snaps and a “wahoo” but that may be because I was done. I returned to this dilapidated establishment a few more times… but never found my inner Madonna. My stage soul crushed like a kid who finds out no one else plays the accordion and it won’t be cool until they are older and find some amazing band. But there’s no amazing band for me. Just the acoustics of my SUV drowned out by the volume of the surround sound.

But I still love the freeing sense I get from belting out to the Gardner Sisters amazing harmony. Or Bohemian Rhapsody because who doesn’t sing along with that one? But I have more reasonable expectations. I’m not a super star that’s yet to be found. I’m just a mama doing her thing trying to keep my sanity… and that’s so ok.

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