My father is an amazing singer. He, who never had any training, has a beautiful voice and like most non-professional singers, he frequents karaoke bars.
Now, karaoke is like crack to Asians. Apart from the big kara
oke chains such as Holidays where you get your own room and etc, there are BEAUCOUP family owned karaoke places. The big chains are popular for younger people; by that I mean younger than the age of say..40. The latter is a hit for older, married working people (aka, people like my dad). It is usually part of the owner's house, located on the first storey. It has 3 ~ 5 tables with a stage in the front. Now each party has their own table and the owner will play the requests table by table. This means that you can be singing up on the stage in front of people you don't even know. It's great fun because of the excessive amount of echo from the mic and that people there are usually drunk anyways.
My dad likes to go to these places after work. Nobody in my family really enjoys singing besides him and I; so now that I'm here, we go together. People at these places are always giving unnecessary compliments and asking awkward questions.
"Your daughter is so beautiful"
"She sings so well"
"How old is she? Oh! She's from Canada? Does she have a boyfriend?"
"I have a son..."
and it goes on and on
I understand that this type of conversation is completely normal in this part of the world. Our small and dense neighborhood prohibits solitude. Everybody pretty much knows everybody so it is no surprise that my dad has befriended these frequent customers. Despite of all that I understand about this culture, when you're the youngest soul present, surrounded by strangers, it is a little uncomfortable to hear what they have to say.
It is all part of the way of life that I still have to slowly adapt to. I enjoy going to karaoke because it's just me and my dad. He doesn't have many interests but for as long as I can remember, singing has always been his favourite past time.