Wednesday, 17 October 2007

Eccentric Accessories

"The most futile thing in this world is any attempt, perhaps, at exact
definition of character. All individuals are a bundle of contradictions --
none more so than the most capable."
Theodore Dreiser, author (1871-1945)

Thank you, Shelagh, for that apt quote, particularly as it fits in perfectly with your little brother -

Himself is now into Accessories – of the jazz kind of course.

‘I need a bag to put my trumpet in,’ he declared (this was several instruments ago, if you’ll pardon the expression) and it didn’t have a case, and despite the fact that he was a long way from playing in public, he had to buy a bag - from the market in Falmouth.

That was too small so he bought another one from Trago (cheap store here in South West). That was also the wrong shape and he saw this flight bag in Tesco and said, ‘this is just what I want, Pop’. Which was what he’d said about the other two.

Then, in search of perfection, he sold that trumpet and bought another cornet (you can see a pattern emerging here) and now this cornet has a case that came with it. But instead of not using the new flight bag, which he’s obviously rather taken with, he takes that down to the jazz sessions. Inside it, on Sunday, was a small notepad and biro for making notes about any numbers he didn’t know, and – a cheese sandwich. Very professional.

His accessories cause me a certain amount of amusement, not least the latest.

‘Look,’ he said, showing me tiny address book he’d just bought. (This is also destined for The Flight Bag). ‘It’s got all the musicians’ numbers that I need.’

He opened it at a page with my mother’s phone number on which slightly mystified me. Is my mother a mean trombonist, unknown to her children? Does she scurry from the wilds of Devon down to darkest Cornwall, don dark glasses and smoke a pipe and become a tromboning jazz mystery?

‘Why have you got Mum’s number?’ I said, just to clarify things.

‘Because I can never remember it, and I might want to ring her and tell her something,’ he said. I can’t see that happening, but it was a good answer.

As you can see, he is Dead Keen about jazz now and the phone is hot with arrangements for rehearsal sessions, making a practice tape, the next jazz session. But with music there are always problems, the latest one being the wrong mouthpiece.

While I am always keen to encourage his musical talents, sometimes it gets a bit much. Last night, when I was trying to read, he was lying in bed playing both mouthpieces. The ones belonging to the cornet, I hasten to add.

Fancy a house swap, anyone?


Graham, Prince & Tilly said...

I could make some dreadfully crude comments in relation to the last paragraph, but I'm going to refrain!!

Sally Lomax said...


Flowerpot said...

Graham - yes you'd better! I should have rephrased that.....!

Sally - yes - sigh. Not conducive to sleep!

Aoj & The Lurchers said...

I bought OH a guitar a few years ago. It languished about gathering dust until he gave it to his nephew. I suppose I should be thankful he never really tried to play it.

Ahhhh Trago Mills! What a fab place that is!

Flowerpot said...

AOJ - yes anything for a bit of peace, I can tell you! And while I groan about Trago, it has its uses. If you're doing up a house it's essential!

laurie said...

my sister put up with years of her teenage son trying to learn the drums and the guitar.

and guess what--he learned! and this summer he played a guitar solo at his big brother's wedding.

it was lovely. but oh the learning curve.... be patient.

The Rotten Correspondent said...

My husband gets all of these strange little packages from eBay with tiny little plastic model parts. They all took to me like they need to go straight to the trash, but clearly he's paid good money for them.

Bless their hearts. And their hobbies.

Flowerpot said...

laurie - thankfully he practises at the workshop several miles away otherwise I would go truly bonkers.

Correspondent - definitely a case of Boys and their Toys methinks.

ChrisH said...

Tom likes to play his harmonica (badly) when I'm trying to read so I know this one, in fact reading your blog today makes me wonder if they are twins separated at birth. (ps no, we can't afford the boat either, another reason why I had to be talked round - I think that will be my holiday for the next 10 years!).

Miss Understood said...

My son received yet another guitar in the post this morning, and has been playing the same song over and over on it for about 3 hours now. I keep telling myself that when I see him on a stage, it'll all be worth it.


Flowerpot said...

Chris - they do sound remarkably alike don't they? I do truly sympathise about boats - a mixed blessing indeed!

MissU - we had a tenant upstairs who used to practise the same chords all day. It was like a Japanese water torture and I had to go and tell him to practise elsewhere. Has Dan stopped now?

debio said...

Love the opening quote, flowerpot. Should be thrown into any conversation but I'll never remember it!

As to the rest, can only conclude that men do the strangest things in bed!

Crystal Jigsaw said...

Quick answer: No thanks!!

Crystal xx

LittleBrownDog said...

The need for "the right bag" makes me think of my endless quest for "just the right pen" with which to start my novel. My friend K helpfully suggested the other week that this was just another excuse...

Good luck with the mouthpieces and am very tempted by the house swap idea, though... (Although not sure what you'd make of H!)

Sweet Irene said...

My husband has a guitar that he knows how to play, but it gathers dust. I don't know why this is. Maybe you should be glad that your dearest is so enthused about playing his mouth pieces. It is kind of endearing, isn't it? It's a good safe hobby, as long as he only tries the mouth pieces and nothing else!

Flowerpot said...

debio - I agree about quotes. I always think 'Oh Yes!', and then promptly forget them.

Crystal - I can't say I blame you!

LBD - I've done exactly the same thing with pens for writing. Yes, your friend's right. It is procrastination - I've even beenknown to hoover (shudder) under such circumstances.

Flowerpot said...

Sweet Irene - I'm glad he plays teh cornet but I do object to him playing in bed!

Rebecca Taunton said...

My Dad has two guitars, a banjo and a mandarin...and doesn't play them. He was very good the last time I heard him, but they remain up in the attic. I think it's lovely that "himself" has so much enthusiasm to play his musical instruments.


Flowerpot said...

Yuor mum is very fortunate that all those instruments stay in the attic, RT! There'd be a hell of a racket otherwise!!