Saturday, September 27, 2014

Wanna Buy a Trombone, Kid?

It has been almost a month since I last wrote a post. This happens every year at this time. With the start of school, and thus, for me, working three jobs, I get a little bit overwhelmed and simply hang on, until I get re-acquainted with the swinging of a crazy schedule.

And I think I am there. Therefore, I have booted up the computer, opened the word processing software, put in ear phones, and begun to listen to the music that is most likely to get my creative juices flowing.

For me, that is classical music.

You see, one summer, my uncle offered to sell me his trombone. I mentioned that possible purchase to my mother. Immediately she thought of all the noise, and the disruption, and the noise, and loud wailing of a brash brass instrument being played. She quickly responded, “Tell him you don’t want to play the trombone, you want to play the violin.”

I am sure she thought to herself, “I dodged a bullet there. Now there will be no noisy brass instruments in my house.” Her frame of reference was listening to the local classical music station and hearing the soft melodies from the strings of a world-class symphony as they were played over the radio.

That September, I signed up to play the violin.

My poor mother was in for a rude awakening, because every student, no matter how good they become, starts at the same place; a place full of squeaks, squawks, and scratches.

Over the years, with a little practice, as little as I could get away with, the squeaks, squawks, and scratches became less, and what I played sounded more and more like a reasonable imitation of music. In fact, when I was in college, I was even able to play with the college orchestra. If memory serves me correctly, I think they were quite desperate for string players.

None of my daughters played violin, however each of my three daughters took piano lessons when they were little. Eldest still plays, and plays quite well. In addition, Eldest and Littlest played the clarinet and Middlest played...well, I will keep that surprise for a moment.

As you can imagine, with three little ones who had to practice piano, in addition to the other instruments, our home was full of music most of the day.

Middlest, for her second instrument, decided on playing the French horn. I remembered my mother’s consternation over the noises that came during the early months of violin playing, I decided that I could live with listening to Middlest play the French horn. Besides, of all the brass instruments, I find the sound of the French horn to be most rich and lovely.

Middlest worked hard at playing and I enjoyed the sound of her practicing. Except for that one day, when everything she played sounded flat and blah. There was an odd feeling that crept over me as I listened to her practice. I decided to check to see if she was feeling ill. When I entered the room where she was practicing, I immediately saw why her sound was so flat, she decided to do her practicing while lying on the floor.

I took pictures on my phone of her practice method, but somehow they all got deleted. I discovered they were deleted after she used my phone to make a call.

Well, now that I have spent all of this time discussing the musical leanings of me and my family, I still have to write a blog post, unless you have already tuned me out.

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