I have always had a fondness for music. An extra fondness, actually, with lots of extra-ness.
As is my particular case with, say, Haka dancing, just because I love it doesn’t mean I’m good at it.
I can remember having a full-blown crush on Donny Osmond and his voice when I was only six years old. I got the Donnie Osmond Album for Christmas that year and it was the highlight of my young life. I still have that album, and know every song on it. I even took it to show and tell in the first grade, it was that prized a possession.
Music continued to play a major role in my private life as my mother continued to feed my love for music. She bought me a Liza Minnelli album for Christmas a couple years later, and again, I know every song on that album.
I can sing “Lollipops, Lace and Lipstick” with as much feeling as “Cabaret.”
My problem is that while I can sing, I cannot do it well.
I didn’t know this about myself until the sixth grade when I was the only person who tried out for seventh grade choir who didn’t make the cut.
Seriously, my mother and entire family had failed to mention that to me. I’m only recently figuring out how good they are at completely blocking me out.
At any rate, my early failure at choir couldn’t deter the fire in my soul for music.
So, I dance. I dance standing up, sitting down – just about anyway it is possible to dance, I dance. I still sing, but only in my car.
Which brings me to the subject at hand – car dancing.
I have playlists that come with their own dance sequence, and I sing those babies with all the feelings, and the dance moves.
I am my best audience. The people in the cars next to me are my second best audience. There is usually a lot of laughter which perfectly dovetails with what I actually do, so I cannot lose and here we are.
A good friend of mine and occasional ever-so-respectful politial sparring partner, Mike Hicks, posted an epic video on my Facebook timeline this week. It made my day and I can’t stop watching it.
It was a husband and a wife stuck in a traffic jam on a major highway, so the wife begins singing songs with the radio, complete with all the sass, dance moves and attitude; while her husband videotaped it.
Watching the video was almost like looking into my own rearview mirror as I go to work every single day.
Except… except … this woman completely upped the game and she is my new hero.
Since traffic was at a complete standstill, what appeared to be her favorite song came on – Meghan Trainor’s Me too – and she began the concert in the car and eventually got out of the car because she could not contain her greatness.
I salute her.
The whole thing made me realize that in the greater Iowa Park/Wichita Falls area, opportunities for traffic jams of that magnitude are rarities, given that people in Iowa Park (myself included) get bent out of shape if six cars are in line at the four-way stop. I’ve heard people say, “who opened the gates?” during these type traffic jams in Iowa Park. Still, that’s not near enough time for Dance Party USA outside my car, especially not in an open-carry state.
I’ve gotten elderly couples involved in a special Bruno Mars moment at a stoplight on Southwest Parkway; jammed for a cop and found out there’s apparently nothing in the penal code which makes it illegal to drive and shake your groove thing at the same time; and I’ve been scoffed at by fun vacuums posing as humans; I have most especially thrilled my children into morbid shock by my car choreography as I dropped them off at the junior high.
Pro parenting tip: Car dancing is an excellent threat and therefore, bargaining chip. Trust me.
But I have never had the privilege of giving a full American Bandstand Performance of George Michael’s Faith on the middle stripes of I-40 during standstill traffic.
I kind of want that in my life, that complete to just let it hang out.
I have friends who sing into beer bottles, own karaoke machines, or actually have beautiful voices and can actually break into song without bringing shame onto their family.
My method of madness is the car. It’s my safe space with superior acoustics. Seriously, the sixth grade choir teacher’s professional opinion aside, my voice is freaking amazing in the car.
And so are my moves.