There are a lot of things going on in the world that I could have picked for a column topic: plummeting gas prices, a suffering economy and the presidential election, to name a few.
Instead, I thought I would tell you about what I did last Friday night. Not only does this require a lot less thinking, but it also strongly reduces the risk of offending somebody.
Please don?t be jealous when you read this: Friday night I had the opportunity to sing with Michael Buble.
Right now, I imagine half of you are green with envy and the other half are asking, ?Who??
How rude of me not to introduce my guest for this week?s column.
Michael Buble (pronounced boo-blay; it?s French or Canadian or something) is a crooner who could be described as a modern Frank Sinatra or Dean Martin.
About a month ago I heard that Michael (we?re on a first-name basis, Mike and me) would be performing at the Kansas Coliseum in Wichita. I?m a huge fan, as is my girlfriend, Shelby. So we got tickets.
You can only imagine the adrenaline that was pumping through my body last Friday as I got to sing one of his hit songs ?Everything? with him to an audience of 3,500 people.
OK, so maybe ?sing with him? might be too strong of a phrase. I guess if you count singing along from roughly 125 feet away as ?singing with him,? then I have been telling the truth.
This is probably not what you think.
On the bright side, though, I just proved to myself that my high school math classes were not a total waste.
To calculate the distance between Michael and me, I used a formula from the Pythagorean Theorem that states if A squared plus B squared equals C squared then Train D, which left Boston at 6:23 a.m. going west at 64 mph will overtake Train E, which left Chicago at 7:59 a.m. and is going 22 mph, at approximately the same time that the square root of the hippopotamus will sit on a right (or ?correct?) angle.
Ha ha, boy, do I love a good math joke. Too bad there aren?t any.
Anyway, the heavy sarcastic beauty of the Kansas Coliseum is that it was not actually designed for a musical concert. From where Shelby and I were sitting (one row in front of the last row) Michael looked like a little narrow-tie-wearing insect down there on the stage, shaking its tiny insect hips to the jazzy tunes.
I can only image what would have happened if The Beatles performed at the Kansas Coliseum. People up in the nosebleed section would have been stomping left and right because of the sudden infestation.
Despite our altitude handicap, Shelby and I really enjoyed the concert. The old, big band numbers and Michael?s dry wit were very entertaining. How?ever, I did formulate my own theory about how the speed of enthusiasm travels.
Like the speed of light or sound, there is a measurable amount of time between when the audience?s excitement starts on the floor and when it actually gets up to the people in the nosebleed section.
I found it quite amusing, actually. The people with seats right in front of the stage were very prompt in their cheering and standing up and sitting down. The standing ovations and applause that originated on the floor would slowly trickle up the stadium seating?becoming less precise with every row?until those of us up in the Row EE were doing a muddled combination of standing, clapping and sitting throughout the entire concert.
By the time we finally quit clapping for the final song, the people with floor seats were already at home in their jammies.
This is not to say that I felt we enjoyed the concert any less out there in the stratosphere. No, our seats 9 and 10 in Row EE in Section 19 were just fine.
In fact, Shelby and I had so much fun that, between tickets and souvenirs, we ended spending around $225 on the evening, not including a midnight dinner at Spangles.
That may sound like a lot of money. By my calculation as of Sunday night, that would be worth about 80 gallons of gas.
I guess that?s the price I?m willing to pay to sing with a big musician like Mike.
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UFO: Michael Buble has a dual citizenship with Italy and Canada.
Don?t ask why.