I mean, aren't crappy crooners the reason why impromptu bar fights actually break out? Only so much a rowdy gang of inebriated thugs can take with a croaking frog on stage before broken beer bottles and dismantled chairs start flying.
Thug #1 : Bloody get off the stage, you talentless cow!
Thug #2 : The fucking pitching's all off!
Singer : How dare you insult me!
Singer's sugardaddy : Don't say that about my precious girl!
And in the midst of all that outraged machismo, a drunken melee ensues. All because a misguided wannabe rock star took to the stage.
So yeah, I try not to endanger myself by hogging that particular spotlight. Not in public anyway.
But my friend Gregarious Gaia assures me that it's not so. Seems the gal has given an unwilling captive audience a couple of impromptu serenades - and miraculously escaped unscathed each time. Of course the fact that Gaia's a curvy six-foot goddess might have helped weigh the scales in her favour. If I'd braved the stage, I'd probably be hot-footing it out moments later with enraged boos, broken plates and rotten tomatoes following in my wake.
But when we both heard about the existence of a boat bar out in the bay, we just had to check it out. Our party girl Gaia especially. We were forewarned that the venue's just a little out of the way, quite a bit dodgy and obviously meant for the less discerning locals.
Imagine your average Chinese junk with dozens of indigent immigrants squeezed cramped into a sardine can and you'd have the bar! Rickety rattan tables with vinyl covers and bowls of Ngan Yin peanuts to munch on while the television screen played the odd Cantonese drama serial. Appropriately lit up by dozens of traditional oil lamps - the ones backlit by images of sultry Shanghai sirens of old!
And oh yes, they had a karaoke machine.
What would a Chinese joint be without that important prerequisite! Since the place turned out to be somewhat empty after a rainstorm, we took advantage of the situation ( emboldened by a potent mixture of alcohol and seasickness ) and commandeered the lone machine.
Only to find it woefully lacking in English songs. Apart from Celine Dion, Michael Jackson and a couple of boy bands, we didn't have much else. So to the chagrin of the reluctant listeners who slowly trickled in, Gaia and I took the stage to belt out some Backstreet Boys and Westlife. Thankfully the burly patrons were constrained to keep their weapons outside.
Otherwise being thrown overboard for inadvertently butchering a Top 40 hit would have been the least of our problems :)