Creepin’ People Out

Since last week’s was so heavy I thought that this week’s challenge should be lighthearted. We filmed this in July, but I haven’t posted it yet as I was waiting for the video editing from my cousin and his paying clients must come first. I had a lot of fun with this one and though I didn’t expect to, I actually learned a lot about myself.

Challenge #19:

“Speak to strangers through spoken song lyrics!” – from Debbie Hayden

debbiechallenge2 debbiechallenge

Aunt Debbie is one of the first people I told about my project and she’s been incredibly supportive of it from the get go. Both she and her daughter, Amy, have been helping me throughout the process and have come up with some pretty fun challenges for me. Aunt Debbie and I are also working on getting through the AFI Top 100 Films and I’m thoroughly enjoying the time we spend together getting lost in classic films. She’s one of my biggest cheerleaders and I’m so blessed to have her in my life.


This challenge is inspired by a stunt they did on Ellen. You can find that video here:

Naturally, I was psyched! Not many people would willingly put themselves in this situation. Though I didn’t have a choice, I was still incredibly excited!!

My cousin Mike, Aunt Debbie’s son, and his girlfriend, Rose, joined in on this adventure, as well. After college and a stint with NFL Films, Michael moved to LA and started his own film production company, Bon Lavi Productions.  He graciously agreed to film this challenge for me, edit the footage and create a masterpiece of discomfort.  He makes me so proud and lives the COOLEST life. I’m always hearing about people he’s met, fun things that he does, and on the rare occasion when he’s home, trying some of his “California cooking.” I have yet to make it out to visit, but I promise I will soon, cuz!

Mike and Rose

Mike and Rose

Amy, Mike and Aunt Debbie

Amy, Mike and Aunt Debbie

Me and Mike

Me and Mike

Here are some teasers of the other projects he’s put together:

We selected Findlay Market for the location of our activity. We figured it was the perfect location since it is a bustling metropolis of local shoppers on the weekends. For those that aren’t familiar, Findlay Market is a large open air market where local retailers and farmers can sell their products. It’s like a really cool grocery store!

2931225825_87f1d49d44_z Findlay-farmers-market DSC2931_Cropped findlay-market

I also really enjoyed this because I got to wear a microphone and everything! Amy had to follow me around and stay within 15 feet of me so that the the receiver for the mic could pick up the sound. After I’d walked away, she also handed out little cards I had created thanking my “victims” for their participation and explaining what had just happened to them.

Ok so Aunt Debbie and I selected “Hello” by Lionel Richie, and “Wanna Be” by the Spice Girls.

They lyrics utilized were as follows:

“Wanna Be”

Yo, I’ll tell you what I want, what I really really want,
So tell me what you want, what you really really want,
I’ll tell you what I want, what I really really want,
So tell me what you want, what you really really want,
I wanna, I wanna, I wanna, I wanna, I wanna really really really wanna zigazig ha.



Is it me you’re looking for?
’cause I wonder where you are
And I wonder what you do
Are you somewhere feeling lonely?
Or is someone loving you?
Tell me how to win your heart
For I haven’t got a clue
But let me start by saying I love you

We figured one would really amp up the creep factor and the other would confuse the strangers!

I cannot possibly describe what I experienced before you watch it, so without further ado: Singing to Strangers

Sing to Stangers from Mike Hayden on Vimeo.

So there’s that. Haha

I was super nervous at first. I didn’t know how to approach people. My parents were there to observe and my dad made the suggestion to find people that were sitting down. This made them a sitting duck/captive audience and they couldn’t escape the impending awkward situation if they wanted to. The other problem is that my nerves were so bad that I couldn’t remember the lyrics and that kept throwing me off my game. After about a half hour in, I finally got comfortable and it just game naturally to me. In fact, Mike said that we had enough footage and I wanted to keep going because I was having so much fun with it!!


Get out of my own head. It’s not ever as bad as I think it is.

Suck it up. Sometimes you have to do hard stuff. Might as well have fun with it!

Stranger Danger is definitely real.

If you see a small elderly man sitting at a table alone and he asks you if your name is Karen, don’t say yes. He could be waiting for his long lost granddaughter and this will make you feel very bad for the awkward scenario you have no made him a part of.

I get way too much sadistic pleasure out of making people feel uncomfortable.

It’s all about being comfortable in your own skin. Once I stopped caring what other people would think of what I was doing, I had an absolute blast!!

The more familiar I am with something the more comfortable it becomes.

And finally, breathe.

Aunt Debbie, thank you for making me step out of my comfort zone on this one. I spend a lot of time worrying about what kind of impression I’m making, what people think of me and how other people feel about our interaction. Once I let it go, I had so much more fun! I have taken this into my social environments and have realized how much more enjoyable life can be when you stop giving a *bleep* about how others perceive you!

Many thanks also to Mike, Rose, Amy and my parents for coming out for the afternoon. And a very special thank you to Mike and Bon Lavi Productions for shooting, editing, producing, creating, etc. the video. You are amazing!!  I owe ya one!!

Til next time!


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