Not OK, Videoke

oh boy, here we go…

Ahh! Christmas is indeed here. Malls are now open until midnight and bazaars have mushroomed all over the place. Lights envelop the city and everywhere you look, there are people who are dressed up a little bit extra nicely with gifts wrapped in brightly colored papers in their hands. Food stalls offering tasty kakanin, castañas, and lechon are commonplace. In the air, you can hear children who are not gifted with beautiful voices sing classic Christmas carols equipped merely with improvised tambourines and eager hearts. But the children’s voices are not the only ones filling the air. Somewhere in the distance, you hear a familiar song assaulting your ears…

“P-p-p-p-p-p-p-p-poker face.”

Ah, the curse of the videoke / karaoke has landed upon this neighborhood! And there’s nothing I can do but ask God for forgiveness in behalf of them, for they do not know what they are doing.

The videoke has become a staple in many parties and tons of enterprising people have taken advantage of Filipinos’ love for music. But don’t we all agree when I say that it is not only a source of joy but also of nuisance?

A couple of weeks back I attended my office’s Christmas party. I really did not want to attend it in the first place because I was not close with my officemates and I would rather rest since I was sick (still am actually) at that time. However, it was just one of those things that you just have to do. A sort of a social obligation. Besides, I also remembered one of my New Year’s resolutions for 2011 – be more sociable (Yes, I can be a bit of an anti-social sometimes! :P) – so I hauled my butt to the event and decided to be… friendlier.

The event was held in a place where the function rooms had videoke machines. All along, I thought there was just going to be a time allotted for people who wanted to sing, to do so. But no! I had to endure listening to “Fame,” “Let’s Dance,” “Bring Me Back to Life,” “I’m Yours,” “Knife,” and other 80s ballads from the moment we started the event until a few minutes before the servers switched off the lights! To be fair, there were some people who had every right to sing (and even belt out), but the others absolutely did not.

This was not my first time to attend such a party. I had gone to friends’ parties whose highlight was the videoke machine as well. I, on some occasion, was even handed the microphone. I did sing, but I could not really say that it was something I could consider super enjoyable.

I am not taking the right of people to enjoy themselves and have fun. By all means, go and have fun, but there are just some people who are inconsiderate, especially those who use the videoke in residential areas with the volume hitting the maximum level until the wee hours of the morning. Look, your house is NOT sound proof! There are people who are trying to sleep, concentrate, or just want to have some quiet time and neighbors with exploding voices amplified by microphones are the last thing I want to hear. Also, your music is not my music. Who made you the neighborhood’s official DJ?  Consideration, people.  A little consideration. Please.

It’s the day before Christmas and I saw my neighbor taking a videoke machine out of his vehicle and into his house. He also took stacks of monoblock chairs inside. He is definitely getting ready for a party. I, on the other hand, should either leave the house now or start boarding up.

p.s. Have a “harmonious” Christmas everyone!

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