I have a very peculiar habit of singing whatever song happens to get stuck in my head. Most people just sort of hum it, sort of sway to the beat that is going on inside their brain, or just whistle. I sing, and I generally don't merely sing, but I tend to belt. For the most part, this isn't a problem, and people tend to respond in a few predictable ways:
1. Ignore me.
2. Give me a smile or a nod, as if to say, "I think it's pretty cool that you sing in public."
3. Compliment me on my voice, which I will confess, is awesome when I keep it within its sadly limited range.
4. Give me a weird look and move away, as if to say "What's this? Mirth and merriment in public? Leave me to my silent, sullen misery."
Usually the song will be whatever song happened to be on the radio lately. For example, "Touch Me" by the Doors has been getting considerable airplay lately on the oldies station I listen to, and if you can resist yelling out "C'MON, C'MON, C'MON, C'MON, C'MON, now-----TOUCH me baby..." after the opening chords in synchronized rhythms rise to their peak, well, you have more willpower than me. Which isn't really hard, as I will continue failing to resist that for the rest of the day, to the amusement of my coworkers and the residents we take care of.
However, sometimes random and wholly inappropriate songs enter my head and demand to be sung, and these cause result number 4 to occur in much higher numbers. The unspoken statement becomes "You frighten me, and I think it best we keep our distance."
Such was the case at Meijer tonight while I was shopping for the cleaning supplies I neglected to pick up yesterday. Night shift people are a pretty tolerant lot; only the biggest oddballs are out during the vampire hours, so a little acceptance is in order. However, I could tell I was disturbing even this usually unflappable clientele with my impromptu concert's playlist tonight.
What was this song? Well, it's catchy. It promotes social awareness. It has many passionate, emotional lines that demand the singer to harness the soul. It advocates a radical redistribution of income on a global scale. And if you loudly belt it out while doing grocery shopping in the middle of an April night, people give you weird looks and move away from you.
And if you dare, you can listen to it yourself here. And then imagine me singing it loudly in Meijer in the middle of the night, and not just singing the song, but changing the inflection of my voice when the singer changes.