“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”

I bring a lot to the microphone: enthusiasm, excellent song selection, volume - but not vocal talent, per se. Sure, I can carry a tune, but I'm not auditioning for Broadway anytime soon (although in the throes of my karaoke passion, belting "Midnight Train to Georgia," I think I can do anything). And that is it for me. I might not be in the top 2-percent of karaoke singers, but I don't care. I love it so much that I always want to do it. In my life, which is full of competition and the desire to achieve and succeed, it is a pleasure to do something I love - even if I'm terrible at it.

Karaoke has changed my definition of success. In karaoke, success is how many people I can squeeze into the room, how many people get up to the microphone for the first time, or how raspy my voice is the next day.

I work hard and find pleasure in succeeding — it turns out that my most successful moments are when I'm pleasantly botching a song in a room full of my favorite people. I plan to pause, cherish, and fill my life with these "karaoke" style successes. And let me tell you, everybody loves Celine Dion.


— Rebecca Arnold