Some Lyrics for Singing Voice Mail Messages

I had written these “voice mail songs” many years ago, when I used to live in Vancouver and we only had answering machines. It was also when I didn’t have to worry about getting “professionals” calling me. If you might have to worry about that, I highly recommend you don’t use these and just enjoy them. The singing messages are about 30 seconds long to sing, which is long for a voice mail, but that’s these lyrics’ “price” of fun. That’s why I recommend no intros, despite some being written as first verses of the songs where you could have the intros.

I sang these lyrics into my answering machines with the real music playing in the background, loud enough so you had the tune, but not nearly loud enough to overpower my voice. Given the recording quality of answering machines then, it was as good as poorly recorded karaoke. That technique can still work today, but given all the tech out there for karoake YouTube videos and recording features right on the cell phones and computers, try recording using the karoake links below with your cell phone or computer recording feature.

Or just record singing solo, unaccompanied.

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Mr Grinch, from the original Dr Seuss Christmas special

This is most appropriate for December, or whenever you feel is appropriate to start having the Christmas theme in your life. However, I don’t think it has to be for December or Christmas. For singing purposes, it is the part from 1:25 in the video below. In the lyrics of the real song in the video link below the lyrics to the karaoke version, it’s the verse that starts with You’re a foul one, Mr Grinch.

Don’t hang up please, like the Grinch,
Leave a message, it’s a cinch!
Leave your number and your name,
And a message if you’re game,
It’s a cin-inch!
The three words that best describe when
Are as follows, and I quote:
“At! The! Beep!”

Mr Grinch Karoake Link to YouTube

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Somethin’ Stupid, by Frank and Nancy Sinatra

This is meant to be recorded straight up from the beginning. To keep your message as short as possible, though, I would recommend skipping the intro and starting at 0:11 of the video below (or the equivalent in the karoaoke video link below the lyrics).

Hello, my friend, you’ve reached (two-syllable name)
But I’m not home to get the phone
And chit-chat with you.
But if you leave a message then, I’m sure that when
I’m home I’ll get in touch with you.
So at the beep please leave your name and number
And why you called me so I won’t be blue.
And then hang up so when I’m home
I’ll know you called and I’ll make sure
I call you…
(I’ll call you –
like at the end of the song)

Somethin’ Stupid Karaoke Link to YouTube

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Rainy Day Women #12 & 35, by Bob Dylan

This one I would absolutely recommend skippping the intro cause it’s 35 seconds long and people will hang up before then, wondering what the heck that music is all about, including if they’ve dialed the correct number. I don’t care if there’s auto-dial these days. They’ll recheck, or think they hit the wrong auto-dial. You’ll have wasted their time, and if it’s long distance, their money. So start at 0:31 or so of the video for a brief lead-in, or the equivalent spot on the karoake video link.

They’ll phone ya when you’re tryin’ to have some fun,
They’ll phone ya when your mind is out to lunch,
They’ll phone ya when you’re tryin’ to make a buck,
They’ll phone ya when you’re tryin’ to get a (beep!),
But never will they phone when you’re at home!
(That’s when) Everybody should get phoned!

Rainy Day Women #12 & 35 Karaoke Link to YouTube

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Games that Lovers Play, by Connie Francis

I think Wayne Newton has the more famous version of this song, but I was not able to find it on YouTube. However, composer James Last wrote it for Connie Francis, specifically, so this is the original version. The intro is pretty short, but I would still skip it and start at 0:09 of the video below. Unfortunately, I was not able to find a karoake link. If you can find either the Wayne Newton version or karoake link, please do share. Thanks!

There are games that many foolish callers play,
Like how some don’t leave a message come what may,
Never caring who gets hurt along the way,
Let’s not play those games that callers play.

No karoake link was found for Games that Lovers Play

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The Happiest Colleague Award

Happy WorkerNo, I didn’t win this award.

But I created it, won an award for suggesting it and will see it used in the Nova Scotia provincial public service! If it gets adopted widely enough, we’re going to be the happiest public service on the planet! 🙂

And better yet, you can try it at your workplace, too!

Everybody antes up a little something to give seasonally to a colleague they deem as having been happiest around them in the past 3 months.

I chose seasonally as the presentation period to celebrate the changing of the seasons that gets little more than a passing notice these days. Also, 3 months is a fair period so as not to do this too often and diminish the value of the award, and not too long between periods to have a general memory of someone’s “recent” behaviour.

For an award, I recommend something that can be attributed to happiness, like a smilie magnet, pin, stress ball, etc. that someone can display if you wish to have it on show. This might get old after a year and they start piling up, though, so if you do this, return the award after a month or two to reuse. A little candy or some happy food would work just as well, or a drink for a toast if you do it as a company event.

The “happy” criteria is about which colleague is generally the happiest when you interact with them.

Knowing this award is constantly at stake will help keep happiness on many people’s minds more often. It won’t always work, of course, and there won’t be times appropriate for it, like if someone is in bereavement. That wouldn’t be right to remind them of this for the sake of it when empathy needs to be shown. However, having a constant reminder to be happy should help people generally feel better and behave better.

Each person gets to give an award because it’s personal to that person. It also makes sure everyone gets a chance to experience the same happiness because everyone has the same award to give. As well, it keeps popular people or people who interact with lots of others from winning as a result of group vote. Those people have to earn it with everyone for each award like everyone else. In fact, it can be argued that they might not win many awards because they might not be around anyone enough to show that much happiness as one other person each colleague might interact with. It’s kind of like having lots of casual friends without any best friends so if best friend awards were given, the “popular” ones might not get one.

I know this idea might be a bit too happy and fluffy for some people, but if you think it might work at your workplace, please give it a try! Whether or not you do, though, here are some other resources for “happiness” that may be of interest to you.

Flesch-Kincaid Grade Reading Level: 9.4

You Have to Change the Way That People See Themselves Before You Can Change Their Behaviour

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Bill Strickland, social innovator

Bill Strickland, social innovator

Short post because there’s a 35 minute video from TED.com called Rebuilding America: One Slide Show at a Time, which I wanted to share. It is a very beautiful and inspiring talk, with some very funny moments, by social innovator Bill Strickland. He is gently accompanied by Herbie Hancock on piano. The talk is about Bill’s work and incredible journey from an at-risk youth to 1996 MacArthur “Genius” grant recipient from what he has done for other people, especially in Pittsburgh’s inner city neighbourhoods. It shares his breadth of vision, his amazing social networking skills and, most importantly, the life philosophies that got him here.

There are lots about how he lives life, views society and treats people, like the headline of this post.

You have to change the way that people see themselves before you can change their behaviour.

Take note, self, and all government policy makers and regulators, whose job it is to try and change people’s behaviour en masse.

The talk and stories within are all presented at a very “street level”, no nonsense involved, straight to the point, but so eye and heart opening, touching and warming from the differences he has made in the lives of people and they in his.

Enjoy!