As a kid, I imagined myself as some kind of rock star.
Really, I was just a ham and would jump at any chance I had to perform. If my parents were hosting a Christmas party? My little three-year-old self was right there to oblige with any and every Christmas carol I knew. During the school talent show? I did a little dance/skit/performance to “Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini” – complete with wearing said bikini on stage. I was eight. (We do have these performances on tape. However, I’m not hi-tech enough to know how to convert an 8-millimeter tape to a YouTube video, or else I’d share.) As I grew a wee bit older, and decided to focus on my singing career, I would even go so far as to tape myself with our Talkboy, a la Kevin McCallister, and critique it. (After I realized that I didn’t sound as awesome as I knew I was, I stopped recording and just kept belting it out.)
Now? I still love to sing, but I’m far more self-conscious than I was. I tend to shake a bit in front of large groups. I thoroughly enjoy karaoke under the right circumstances (read: large groups and significant amounts of alcohol), and do a stellar rendition of Shaggy’s “It Wasn’t Me.” But that’s really the only public singing that I’ll do.
What does that leave, then, as an arena to showcase my talent? The car and the shower, of course.
I went to school in Baltimore and spent a fair amount of time going back and forth from there to Philly during breaks and whatnot. And I-95, well, it can get awfully boring if you don’t keep yourself entertained. So I would put on my hands-free earpiece, pretend it was a stage microphone (I was trying to channel Gwen Stefani at the time), and *seriously* rock out in the car. If you were ever stopped beside me, you’d probably see me bouncing a bit in the driver’s seat, fighting against the constraints of the seatbelt. And it felt GREAT. Freeing, even. It kind of makes me sad that I don’t have my car down in D.C.
But I still have the shower. I now start every morning with a carefully selected, upbeat playlist (that may or may not include some Beyonce, Rihanna, and Britney, to name a few) that I belt out to wake me up – especially when I’d so much rather still be curled up under the blankets. On the days when even the singing and the hot water aren’t doing enough to energize me, I throw in a few dance moves. Yeah, you read that right. I shimmy and shake and do as much as the shower space will allow. (I’ve recently considered investing in some of those rubber grips for the floor of the tub, to decrease the liability of slipping.)
Don’t get me wrong – I’m not suggesting that getting up while it’s still dark out is easy. But my little song-and-dance routine tides me over at least until my morning coffee.
And maybe now with all this practice I’ll be ready for another karaoke appearance (complete with dance moves!), and add some “Womanizer”* to my repertoire. Who’s in?
*I can (and should) be swayed on song choice. Feel free to make your suggestions here.