Why I Don’t Play The Piano Today

Published: Thursday, August 21, 2014 at 09:13 AM.

            The worst thing about going back to school at the end of the summer……was going back to school! We all understood from the first grade the necessity of the thing. I just didn’t like the mandated participation. We were like cattle being run through Tri-County Stockyards. Or at least I thought so until Leon pointed out that our “graduation fate didn’t turn up rare, medium or well done”.

Maybe I lacked the right attitude. I was more worried about spelling “multiple” or “disassociate” correctly than I was looking around at the “multiple” friends that I would never, from that time on, “disassociate” from. You don’t think that far ahead in the third grade. You figure last week you were running free…….chasing dogs, lightening bugs and each other. Today, you’re stuck in a desk, behind the tallest guy in the room, listening to Miss Belle fawn over the merits of George Washington, Daniel Boone and Thomas Edison. Listen, they made you put your head down after lunch and not move, say a word or breathe for twenty minutes! We didn’t have a clue back then about those ancient prisoners trapped in that infamous Mouse Tower on the Rhine but we could identify with each and every one of them!

            We didn’t see the sun from August to May.

I’ll tell you how bad it was, my piano lessons were during recess! LaRenda skipped the Blue Bird Reading Class as she went down to the music room for her scheduled practice. Anne got out of English. Bob missed spelling. I’m stuck inside playing the “Wind Sock” song while everybody else is racing for the monkey bars.

            I only got to dust the erasers twice the whole year!

If it hadn’t a’been for Yogi I might not have made it. He showed us how to  roll the clay into little pieces, swish them around in your mouth to wet them down a mite and see if you could throw one (when the coast was clear) hard enough to stick it to the chalkboard. Sometimes we’d toss them gently into an unsuspecting hairdo. He brought the first grasshopper to class…….and it wasn’t show and tell. It was mostly, for Yogi, seek and destroy. He could make that “Creature from the Black Lagoon” sound without moving his lips. It would drive Pam and LaRenda nuts!

I’m not sure if it was Yogi or Ricky who figured out how to rotate the cap on the old metal radiator. We’d unscrew it to the “just barely hanging on” position so when the pressure from the heat built up……it would blow that thing across the room. Steam would shoot out like an old fashion locomotive was rolling through. I’m telling you, the class would go wild!

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