Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Lip Syncing: Is it the end of the World?

Remember my obsession with Pop Divas?  Here's another secret, I also had an obsession with lip syncing as a child. In the 80's there was a whole phenomenon around the topic.  There were games shows based on doing just this!  I wanted to be on that game show!
When I was little, I would not only memorize every swoop, ornament, and note that the pop diva was singing, I also would get to the point that, I would look like her singing was coming out of MY MOUTH!  When I was in 6th grade, and the first Mariah Carey album came out, my church had a lip syncing contest.  My friend Jenn and I did "Someday" by Mariah Carey. We won the best Lip Syncing Award!
So, here's the question: should we all be freaked out when we learn an artist is lip syncing?
The answer is NO.  Pop artists have the worst issues with their voices.  They are expected to perform night and day with no vocal health problems.  They are also expected to give interviews, act, and dance, all the while being able to sing perfectly for everyone in the process.
This has gone on with pop artists for years!  We all know the "Milli Vanilli" era.  This is when the technology started getting so good, more artists could get away with Lip Syncing!  I'm not condoning Milli Vanilli.  That whole situation was a lie.  I'm talking more about the artists that really do sing for themselves and are expected to do all of these other feats and sound perfectly!
I've seen numerous artists live.  I can definitely tell when they are really singing.  I remember watching the Janet Jackson Concert in 2002 and knowing what she was doing.  When she actually sat down and sang a slow song, sitting on a stool.  She sounded COMPLETELY DIFFERENT.  It wasn't bad. It was live singing!
Now, here's the thing about the Beyonce situation from the Inauguration.  For all we know, they told her she had to pre-record it,  or maybe she had a cold and was worried that she would loose her voice.  Have you every sang out side in 30 degree or lower weather?  It's pretty awful on the vocal cords in general.  I remember, one year for the tree lighting at Rockfeller in New York, Britney Spears sang "Silent Night."  She sang it with a coat the barely covered her arms an no scarf or any other coverage on her neck!  Enrigque Iglesias sang after her.  He had a gigantic scarf on covering his neck and keeping his vocal cords warm!  I remember thinking how stupid Britney was being in that weather, and that time, she actually sang live!  (Slightly scary!) And then, there's the Youtube video of "Britney Singing Live" that's absolutely terrible!  She could actually sing as a child, but a child's stamina is completely different from an adult performer's.
Now, there are artists out there that do sing live all the time.  Carrie Underwood gave a concert a couple weeks ago where her voice was giving out.  She felt so bad, she publicly apologized to the crowd.  Then, she announced on stage, she wasn't keeping a penny she was going to make from that concert, and that she would give it back to the community.
Whitney Houston tried to sing live at most of her shows. Towards the end of her career, that started getting her in trouble.  She didn't have the chops to sing through an entire concert any more.  There were a lot of upset concert goers at this time in her career.
Here's a little side note about the Beyonce situation.  Did you know, that at Military funerals, the trumpeter that plays "TAPS" is prerecorded now?  They aren't allowed  to have a live trumpeter in most instances.  This is a government issue and not the musician's.
If am going to hear a Broadway Singer or Opera Singer, I expect their singing to be live!  If I'm going to see an artist, I don't always expect them to do it all live.  Good or bad, that's just what I've come to expect these days. 

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

"Scream and Shout" is stuck in my head!

And I like it! Well, I've blogged about this before.  When a song gets stuck in my head, I just have to listen to it until it's memorized, and I wear it out!
Today's song is "Scream and Shout" by Will I Am featuring Britney Spears.  With nonsensical lyrics like, "We oh we Oh we Oh we oh.  We oh we oh we oh we oh!" it's really stuck in my head! This song is fun to sing, dance, and just jump around to!
Also, I love seeing Britney in action.  I wish there was a little more dancing in the video, especially with her performing it, but I'll live.
I need to take the energy to this song, and use it!
Here's the video! 
*Some lyrics may not be appropriate for young listeners!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Un-trusting Girl Friend

Me leaving a voice message for someone who had a pick up order: Hi, *John.  This is *Company Name.*  Your order has come in and is ready to pick up!

A few minutes later, Phone Rings. Co-Worker answers: Hello, this is *Company Name.* How may I help you?
Co-Worker: I'm sorry.  This is a business. If we called him, it's because he ordered something.
Caller:  WELL, YOU BETTER STOP CALLING MY BOYFRIEND!!!!!!!!!!!!  #Hangs Up on Co-Worker#

Yes, this has actually happened at my store more than once!
Yeah for Caller ID.
*Names have been changed.

Monday, January 14, 2013

My New Year's Goals for 2013

This year, I just have a couple New Year's Goals. 
The first goal is to loose weight.  I would like to loose about 30 pounds.  For my height, I'm am considered morbidly obese.  The only thing is, even loosing just 30 pounds will still keep me on the obese size of the size chart, according to the doctor's office. This year, I'm saying publicly, I'm going to loose the weight!
My second goal is to increase the traffic to my Foodie Blog. Lately, it's been getting at least 30 hits a day.  A lot of that traffic is from Pinterest.  I'm going to find other ways to get my blog out there in the spotlight without going overboard.
My third goal is to improve my friendships.  Keeping friendships as an adult is really hard, especially when in a relationship and that person really is your best friend.  I want to work on being a better friend. 
These are my New Year's Goals. 

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Living in Poverty

When I was nine years old, my mom and my dad both got laid off from their jobs.  The company my mom worked for, now known as Phillips Magnavox, decided to move all production to Mexico.  The company my dad worked for, was loosing money and laying people off.
By the time I was eleven, our trailer had been repossessed, and my parents had filed bankruptcy.  We went from a two income household to a zero income household.  I didn't understand what was going on, besides the fact that we didn't have any money.  Nobody ever tried to explain to me what was going on.  Not one person sat me down and tried to explain what it means to be poor, or even the opposite, what it means to create a budget and save money.
Both of my parents searched and searched for jobs, but both of them being in their 50's, could not find anything permanent that made close to the amount of money they were making previously.  My mother's previous employer paid for her to attend college, since she didn't have any higher education.  She got an associates degree in business.  My parents both spent time as substitute teachers.
My dad had jobs off and on.  He got a job as a property manager at a storage unit facility.  He lost that after 2 or three months.
We moved across town into a low income housing edition.  My parents looked for jobs.  My dad started working at Carrie Home For Boys on the night shift.  After sixth grade, we moved again, into a house that we started renting.  We lived all the way through my high school years.
This post is just a short history of being poor.  Where am I going with this?
My parents NEVER talked money with me or my siblings.  We always found out about things on the downward end.  The loan that defaulted on my sister's car that she didn't even know about.  The credit card my parents were helping me pay for in college, until one day, they just stopped paying the bill, without telling me.  The loan my dad took out on my car without telling me, to fix it's transmission.  The endless trips to Walmart, K-Mart, and Meijers that we really didn't have money for, but my parents went anyway.
I'm not trying to rat out my parents, but they didn't teach me anything about money.  How to save it.  How to spend it.  How to not go in debt.  I'm not trying to blame them either.  I just had to learn for myself how to do these things.
This creates the Cycle of Poverty. My parents never gave me the education I needed to learn about money.  Maybe it's the generation they grew up in.  They are older, the age of most of my friends grandparents.  Did anyone else in my age group grow up with this problem?  Or did your parents educate you about the proper ways to earn, save, and spend money? 
My sister and I had a talk one day about the ways are parents hid whole money issues from us.  The secret loans. The trips to the stores.  When they had money, they spent it!
I remember, when my uncle died, he gave my mom a sum of money.  They bought a used car, which was needed.  Then, they proceeded to drive it across the United States. That trip was to see family, but a lot of money was spent to do it.  Maybe the rest of that money is how we were able to afford to move that year.
Now that my parents are older, they don't have the money to live off of.  I feel horrible because I can't afford to support them and get them the assistance that's needed for this time in their life.
I had a small trust fund to pay for medicine after my transplant.  I was told that to keep my insurance, I had to get rid of it.  I bought a used car.  This was to be safer driving to and from the hospital, which was a little over an hour drive each way.  When it came down to it, my social worker asked where that money was.  I explained to her that my parents told me to buy a car with it.  She shook her head at me in disapproval.  I obeyed what my parents had told me to do.
Now, I'm finally paying off the card I had charged most of my medicine on in college.
The current job I have is actually still paying me and keeping me at poverty level.  I keep working at my job, because I enjoy it most of the time, and it provides me with insurance.  I stated this before in previous blogs: Because I went to college, I have a lot of debt.
This post isn't to tear down my parents.  I apologize if it looks like I'm trying to.  I'm just trying to organize the thoughts in my head about my history with money.  I want to break away from the poverty cycle that has been created in my family.  According to other sources, it can take up to six generations to break that cycle.  I don't want to be in that situation.  I am only the second generation.  I don't want my children to live through some of the experiences I have.
So, I will keep chipping away at my debt.  I will get educated about money.  I will learn how to teach my children about money.