Six Ways to Ruin Everyone's Lives with Karaoke

Categories: Nitpick Six

Kevin Burkett, Flickr
It's the holidays! Time for you and your dopey friends from high school to reunite and tear up the town. What'll it be this evening: pouring manure on your hated gym teacher's front door step and then urinating on it? Getting trashed and picking a fight with the bully who became the bouncer at whatever bar that Denny's restaurant turned into?

Or maybe you could do something really wild, like go out and sing some karaoke! It'll be great -- you can lust after other despicable empty-headed twits with business degrees while you ignore your server because you already sent Big Dave-O to the bar to order the drinks. It'll be a blast! For only you guys!

While you're out, make sure you ruin everyone else's chances of enjoying ourselves by obeying these six rules for screwing up karaoke for the rest of us.

6. Sing "Sweet Caroline" by Neil Diamond

Why would you put this song on? Is karaoke some sort of formulaic game to you? Do you also yell out "Free Bird" at concerts and start clapping when someone drops their tray in the cafeteria at work? Or are you just a big fan of the Boston Red Sox? Or the movie Beautiful Girls with Matt Dillon? Please, just sit down. Forever.

Justin Seabrook-Rocha, Flickr

5. Have Four of You Sing at Once (and all suck)

It's the same every time you do it. There's the shy one who got dragged up there with no intention of ever actually singing. There's a woman dancing so hard she can't even hold the microphone in front of her face. And the superstar with the constipated face, focusing too hard on actually singing something no one cares about. But who could forget the real crowd pleaser -- the awkward wallflower that doesn't know the song but makes noises and adds commentary. Brilliant.

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I have a Skynyrd only policy for karaoke. It weeds out the people I don't want to drink with pretty quickly. 

bvckvs topcommenter

If you don't like karoke, going to karoke bars was a stupid decision.

So if you're going to make poor decisions about how to spend your time, don't blame it on everyone else.

Own your mistake; correct your behavior; and don't do it again.  That's what decent folks do.


Is there anything that you hipster douches at The Observer won't crap on?  Who cares about these "sins"?  It's just folks having a good time, not worrying about their hipness quotient. So what?  Why do you care? Then again, why do you Observer, ahem, writers, care about 95% of the things you do?  Please, stick to bacon, on-demand no-questions asked abortion, inventing "rights," indie-rock, irrational and illogical socio-political analysis, kissing the arses of people whom wish to be friends with/ a part of their scene, and shilling for your actual friends' *cough* artistic endeavors. These are your strengths. But for Pete's sake, leave sweet, clean, easy-going, good-times loving karaoke alone. 


I think we are all missing the point here. The #1 way to ruin a night out singing Karaoke is to bring a dickhead like Drew along. He will sit there and criticize what everyone else is doing because it doesn't meet his high Karaoke Standards and you will sit there and make a mental note never to ask him along again. Problem solved!


i might get this list tattooed on my back. these are unforgivable sins.


This is why I like places where you can get a private room. Yea, I know I suck, and I've smoked approximately 1 million too many cigarettes to ever sound like Phil Collins, so I'll spare the masses from hearing that. But I also don't have to deal with the absolute worst people at karaoke: THE ONES WHO TAKE IT WAAAAAAAY TOO SERIOUSLY.


I don't really mind most of these "sins"...why not just laugh and enjoy someone butchering whatever song with however many people?  And Sweet Caroline is a great song and has become a karaoke staple for a reason!  But for sure, very long songs are annoying as are very slow songs.  I went karaokeing the other night and heard this one group do 2 songs from the Lion King and a song from Avenue was just awful BUT also highly amusing.  Sometimes the more awful, the better.

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