Doing Things You Don't Want To Do

No one likes doing things they don’t want to do, but doing them anyway is part of life. I can still hear my mother’s voice saying “sometimes you have to do things you don’t want to do.” As an adult, I tend to avoid those things whenever possible because I can. Sometimes, however, they can’t be avoided, and good can come from them.

This past Saturday night my new employer had their annual holiday party. It wasn’t required, but I’d previously committed to going. Normally, I avoid company functions because I’m not the most social person in the world, and (as those with whom I’m close can attest) I can occasionally say something mildly offensive.

Difficult to believe, I know.

So, rather than interact with my coworkers while my guard is down, I choose not to do so at all. However, this is a new job - I started last August - and I thought maybe it might be better to try and be sociable, even if it’s a heavily censored version of myself.

It turned out to be a pretty fun night, with an unexpected high point. At one point, the ranking company officer asked for all the first year employees to raise their hands. We did. He then had us gather at the front of the room and informed us that, as first year employees, we were required to sing a xmas song.

I’m an agnostic. Xmas songs aren’t my thing, and it’s only within the last 5 years or so that I’ve started to enjoy the holiday again, but that’s a different discussion. I waited a few seconds to see if anyone within the group made a choice, or really said much of anything. No one did, and it’s not surprising. Most people don’t like singing in front of others.

I don’t have that problem.

I looked at the man in charge and said, “I could sing the Grinch song.”

He replied that if I knew the words, I could. I didn’t, but Google did. I brought up the lyrics on my phone and launched into it. One or two tried to sing along for the first line, but that was about it.

The crowd of somewhere around 50 people went nuts, in a good way. The room sort of exploded with applause after I finished the first verse, so I stopped there and took a bow. I received a number of compliments today at work, and a coworker asked permission to put a picture of the Grinch on my cubicle - “because of how well you sang, not because you’re a Grinch.” I was flattered.

And it almost didn’t happen.

Obviously, this won’t keep my job if layoffs come around, or keep me from getting fired if I do something supremely stupid, but I did bring a moment of pleasure to a group of coworkers, and that’s a good thing.

Sometimes good things happen when you do things you don’t want to do.


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