Who among us is not accustomed to receiving the "whatever made them think of that" Christmas gift? For me, this year's surprise gift was a Susan Boyle CD, "The Gift." Somehow, those who walk among us and have known me for many moons became firmly fixed on the notion that I am a huge fan of Susan Boyle.
I don't remember ever expressing that sentiment to another human being, but that is not the point of this post. I popped the CD into the player as soon as I unwrapped it, thinking that it would be rude to not do so. The person who gifted me was pleased and most of the other eight people in the room either enjoyed the music or were polite enough to say they did. But there was one hold-out and vocal critic. There always is.
The critic proceeded to explain why and how Susan Boyle has diminished the value of every song she has sung and every artist she has covered. She did so in technical musical terms that I was surprised to discover she knew. Her critique was more dismissive than Ms. Boyle deserves.
In the middle of her diatribe, and without saying a word in reply, I cranked up the volume. You would think that most people would get the idea and shut up. Not our Christmas Critic.
She just kept it up until she ran out of steam, even when people obviously had stopped listening to her and moved on to to engage in more Christmas-like banter.
Ms. Boyle is not an out-of-this world singer, but she has a perfectly serviceable voice and the background vocals and instrumentation covered any vocal sins she might have committed. I liked the CD enough that I played it again after our guests departed, and you can bet it will be playing when the Christmas Critic arrives next year.
Sing on, Susan.