A Clarinet, A Trombone, and Hot Cross Buns
For years, we have gone to football games just to watch the band. We have cooked and handed out millions (yes, millions!) of hot dogs at ball games for the band. We have gone to numerous concerts where our child played in the first band but couldn’t leave until the last band played three hours later. Our closets are bulging with band T-shirts. This year is no exception.
There is nothing as poignant as watching a child march out onto the field for the first time. My mind instantly reels backwards and I can clearly hear the cadence that marked my own steps onto a different field. At the first drum roll my throat closes up and I can neither speak nor sing until that final “…Home of the Brave” rolls over the crowd. I keep thinking that at some point, I will be able to sing the Star Spangled Banner, but with our sixth marching onto the field this year, I found that I still could not.
Our youngest teenager started High School Marching band this year. She squeaked her way through summer band, learned to march at band camp, found the boyfriend at band camp, and now eats lunch in the band room, spends most of her time with band friends, and pretty much lives for band. OK, I need to make a note here. I am not sure it is all band. Could be that her fascination with band is partly due to the dark headed snare drummer. Either way, once again we are involved in the HS marching band.
The teen plays clarinet which is a special kind of torture in and of itself. Luckily she is pretty good. My two older sisters played clarinet, so I knew what to expect when she chose it. In the past we have had trombone, French horn, saxophone, and trumpet players. We survived them all.
About three weeks ago, the fifth grader came home and said that they were going to have band at school and he needed an instrument. He wasn’t sure what he wanted to play but he wanted to be in the band. I said, “You can play saxophone, trumpet, or trombone” (The French horn belonged to the school). Luckily he thought trombone sounded pretty good.
He lugs the trombone back and forth on the bus. I notice that it gets “accidentally” left at school more and more often. He doesn’t practice much and when he does it is a few elephant blasts and then he is off. The dulcet tones will come later, I am sure. For now, we must conquer the lines and spaces.
Not so bad if you think about it. The clarinet is improving but she spends most of her time on the marching field or on a Yellow Dog on the way to a contest. The trombone hasn’t caught the full-blown practice bug just yet, and I don’t mind selling hot dogs on Friday nights.
All was well in our band world until two weeks ago. Fourteen Days that is. Fourteen Days! Our second grader came home with a note that they were having band. Hmmm…I thought. Can’t start too early. I sent five dollars and he came home with a special instrument from hell.
The Recorder. Back in the day, we called it a flutophone. His is lime green. It makes the clarinet seem like a “silent instrument.”
He LOVES to practice. Hot Cross Buns. Hot Cross. Dang it. Hot Cro…Dang it…Hot Cross B…Dang it…Hot…
I am thinking that a pair of cymbals might have been a better investment.