By Mandi Bierly
Updated September 27, 2007 at 11:08 PM EDT
Chris Van der Vooren/Sunshine/Retna

What song did you lip-synch publicly — back when you thought lip-synching was a talent? Here’s why I’m asking: When I was in fifth or sixth grade (fortunately, past my Oak Ridge Boys’ “Elvira” phase), I “performed” “Victory” by Kool & the Gang (pictured) in a school talent show. I must have been better than I remember, because I moved on to Hollywood Round 2 at the grandstand stage at the county fair grounds. Since it wasn’t actually during the county fair, the audience was composed of roughly 20 parents. But still, those people were treated to the spectacle of me, dressed in a Penn State football jersey and white sweatpants, blowing confetti out of a small plastic megaphone. (Come on, that’s good stuff.)

If you don’t have lip-synching stories — special shout-out to my colleague Adam Markovitz, who did Michael Jackson’s “Black or White” with his fifth or sixth grade buddies while wearing sweatsuits sewn together to be half black, half white — feel free to broaden this out to include any performance art. My cubemate Fred McKindra insists he went from nerd to cool kid in Little Rock, Ark. after doin’ a little East Coast swang to Boyz II Men’s “Motown Philly” in the fifth grade, while Missy Schwartz recounts busting third-grade moves to “Beat It” in a Brownies talent show. EW’s Jason Adams admits he was part of an all-boy Go-Gos airband in the fourth grade (they did “We Got the Beat” and “Our Lips are Sealed”). And before Kansas-bred Tanner Stransky lip-synched Montell Jordan’s “This is How We Do It” in the seventh grade, he took part in a sixth-grade talent show parody of…the Ricki Lake show. (I don’t know which one delights me more.)

Your turn.

addCredit(“Kool & the Gang: Chris Van der Vooren/Sunshine/Retna”)