So, last night was the monthly open mic I go to with the roomie. I should do more than just the one, but man, it’s tough when they’re all in the middle of the week and I have to be up at dawn to get my butt to work. We go straight from work, and meet at a deli nearby, where I normally will have an iced tea and some chips. It’s not exactly an exciting dinner, but I have a host of food restrictions.

Last night, I decided to get a potato salad. That should be okay, right?  I imagine you already see where I’m going with this story.

I sat down with my potato salad and a bag of sweet potato chips. And, as I opened it I said the words, “I hope I don’t regret this.”

An hour later, about 5 minutes before we were all to filter in for the open mic…I burped. It was one of those fun ones that you taste in the back of your throat, and it set off a digestive chain reaction that had me making a mad dash for the bathroom. In retrospect, I should have known better, but I guess I was so desperate to eat something that had a bit of substance to it, that my brain overlooked the obvious.

Now, puking always sucks. Always. I’m sort of an expert on the subject at this point in my life, so I know that. Puking in a public restroom though? That’s a pretty shitty moment in life.

Having ejected chips and potato salad which…really wasn’t that great going down, and was even worse coming up, I then had to run to the car for gum. Lots of gum. I need to buy stock in Orbit White -that shit saves my stomach on an almost daily basis.  Then, I took pepto, juust to be on the safe side. And, two charcoal tablets, to try to tummy full of gas.

And I burped (as subtly as possible, which isn’t very when your stomach is rioting) through the first several acts until it was my turn and just decided to hope for the best.

Thank goodness I’m passably funny.  First, we had a minor technical glitch with the uke, where it wasn’t sounding, which I then realized, when I looked to check the volume on the uke itself.  “Oh! My boob hit the tuner button. :D.”  Yes, this totally happened, and yes, I did totally say that standing right next to the mic. Whatever. It was funny.

I’d decided to do 365, because there’s really a limited amount of time in which one can actually perform a New Year’s song, so I went in saying “Well, I’ve stacked up my first New Year regret; I had the potato salad from the deli across the street, so let’s all just hope I don’t belch into the mic.” Honestly, I was less worried about a stray burp than that stray burp turning into me puking on the carpet. That would have definitely counted as the bad kind of memorable: first mic of the year – stained carpet with my vomit.’ Nope.

Mercifully, I didn’t even burp while I was up there. Actually, singing seemed to help settle some of the gas. I assume this has to do with the diaphram and stomach muscles moving about (or, whatever. insert sciency stuff), but I’m going to have to remember it for the next time my stomach kicks it’s game up to all out riot.

So, let’s review: Deli potato salad = bad. Singing = good. Lesson learned.

I’ve talked to my roomie about this before. He does stand up, so it’s pretty easy for him to tell when his set goes well: people laugh. I never seem to be able to tell the difference between polite clapping and clapping from genuine enjoyment, so I never really know how I did. This is true of poetry, and it seems to be equally true of the ukulele. This is why I like going on in the first half. If someone comes up to me on the break and says something nice, it’s like ‘okay, one person definitely enjoyed it, so it must have been fine.’ When you go in the second half, everyone vanishes in a puff of smoke (myself included) to head home, so I find I have no way to gauge.  This open mic is a nice group, and a lot of them are friends of mine, so really, it doesn’t matter what I do; they’re going to applaud anyway.

It did seem to go pretty well though. 365 is a bit of a weird song for me, because  it has 5 chords in it (I guess), but two of them I couldn’t begin to identify. There’s a barre and another simple chord in there that were just things that I decided sounded good when I was writing the song in the middle of the night. They sound good, so they must be chords, but I don’t know the names of them and likely won’t for quite some time. So the chord progression on that goes something like ?/C/? C/G/C C/C/F(or was it C/F/F? whatever, I know it when I’m playing it.)

Still, I was asked how long I’d been playing ukulele. I don’t know. I think I’m still in months. I don’t think I’m up to years yet, and I certainly only started playing actual songs within the past maybe…what? three or four months? I’m too lazy to scroll through the archives to find out. So, I answered “…uh…*shrug* a few months?”

Which earned the response (from a non-musician), “What?! But you’re so good!”  Which I think is the sign that I did okay last night in spite of my regrettable food choice.

I still haven’t learned how to take compliments though. I think I laughed it off “I know 2-ish songs and like 4 chords.” I was undervaluing, of course. I actually know (and when I say know, I mean ‘know and am able to actually play in front of people. I don’t think anything less than that counts as knowing a song.) 2 ish songs and…like…eh…around 8-12 chords. I’m too lazy to count them. And, I’m fog-brained and all drugged up, so that doesn’t help. That darn potato salad did such a job on me that I didn’t crawl out of bed until noon, and immediately took cold medicine and tums. I’ve been feeling a little loopy ever since. So, I think/hope/this post is coherent, but I may look back at it later and wonder ‘what sort of gluten-induced haze was I in when I wrote that?’

Until Next Time, Performed after puking: am I rock star yet? (haha, as if!)

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