So there I was last Friday night, wondering where the heck hubby Rick was. He had promised to take me to see Con Air, but it was almost 15 minutes until the start of the movie and still no Rick. I called the tire center where he works, but there was no answer. Great, I thought, he's probably out at Tacky's Tavern, and I'll be stuck home tonight all alone. I changed out of my nice sweats, climbed into bed and turned on QVC.

Then the phone rang. It wasn't Rick, but my friend Carol from my job at the insurance company. "Hey Jean," she said. "Come on over to Krazy Karaoke! A bunch of us are here! It's two-for-one margarita night!" You can bet I was out of bed, back into my nice sweats, and in my car before you could sing "Rhinestone Cowboy"! I'd always wanted to try karaoke, but of course Rick thinks it's stupid so we'd never gone. Well, here was one party Rick wasn't going to poop! Girls' night out!

Krazy Karaoke is right near the interstate out past the Pamida, and I was stunned to find the joint virtually empty. I thought it would be packed, because karaoke is so trendy! But at least my girlfriends were easy to find—they were the bombed ones onstage howling "Delta Dawn"!

At first I was really super-shy, because the way I sing, well, let's just say I'm no Celine Dion! But my girlfriends were certainly no opera divas themselves, let me tell you. "C'mon, Jean," Carol said. "Sing something!" The margaritas were starting to kick in, and my inhibitions were fast fading away. Finally, to whoops and cheers I sidled up to the microphone. I had decided to choose "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'," because it's not really sung, mostly kind of chanted. My adoring public went wild!

I must say, my girlfriends showed sides of themselves I'd never seen. We all got up at one point and sang (or should I say hollered) "Take This Job And Shove It" because we all hate our jobs so much. Boy, did it feel good to sing that! (Only problem is, none of us can really quit our jobs right now because we need the money.)

As the night went on, four guys came in and sat at the table next to us. My jaw just about dropped, because they were the most gorgeous hunks I'd ever seen! (Of course, after a few drinks, all guys look great to me... even hubby Rick!) They must have been road-crew workers, because they were all tan and beefy and had such tight buns, just like that guy in the Diet Coke ad from a few years back.

Eventually we all got to talking, and imagine my shock when one of them, this really cute blond, called to me, "Hey honey! Buy you a beer?" So you know what I, Jean the kidder, said? "What do I have to do first?" Everyone busted up laughing at that. "Nothing," the blond hunk said, "just wanted to buy a beer for a pretty lady." And all the gals went, "Ooooh!" at that!

But Ron—that was his name—and I had a really nice conversation, probably the first one that I've had with a man in ages! We talked about what we did, and he seemed to be really impressed that I was a newspaper columnist, and I discovered that he was not only the cousin of a girl I graduated high school with, but unmarried to boot! (Boy, I kept thinking, wouldn't Rick go through the roof if he knew this!)

We bugged the guys to get up and sing something, and they were kind of reluctant at first, but they chose "Taking Care Of Business" and sang it in these deep, macho voices! It was a hoot!

"Ain't you girls going to sing something?" they asked us, and we kind of played it cool a bit. Then Ron pointed at me and said, "You. It's your turn."

I was in a good mood, but I didn't want to sing some joke song—I wanted to try to express to everyone how special this evening was. So I chose ABBA's "Dancing Queen." It's in a bit of a high key for me, but I didn't care.

As I sang the first lines of the song, though, I looked down and saw the four guys laughing their heads off—at me! And you know what Ron yelled? "Look! The fat lady's singing! The fat lady! Get it?" He only wanted me to sing so he could make fun of me. Well, I may be chunky, but just because he was good-looking didn't mean he was better than me.

I was crestfallen. Ron had just used me! Maybe he spotted the wedding ring on my finger and that took the wind out of his sails, so he decided to tease me instead. I felt like throwing a drink in his face like they do in the Westerns but I decided I was too much of a lady. I just picked up my purse and went home.

Take it from your old pal Jean, folks: Men are no good! I was pretty upset when I got home, but I felt a lot better after I ate that carton of Ben and Jerry's Chubby Hubby ice cream I was saving. I switched on QVC again, and they were having their doll show. On the screen was the sweetest little doll! Her name was Caroline and she had strawberry-blond curls and a frilly lace Victorian dress and a parasol. You can bet I was on the phone with my credit-card number straight away.

You know, I'm not really religious, but I kind of think the doll was God's way of telling me to be thankful for what I have as opposed to what I don't have. After all, you can't have everything, and there's no use trying. (Unless, of course, you can get it in three easy payments of $59.95, like Caroline!)