Friday, October 26, 2012
Concerto for Can and Shoe Box
By Jody Worsham
All rights reserved for ear plugs
My husband was soon to celebrate his 72nd birthday. The children were huddled up assembling the carrot birthday cake they had decided to make for his birthday. The topic then turned to birthday presents. The seven-year-old declared presents weren’t necessary, “Because love is the best present… and that doesn’t cost anything.” If he had just left off that last part, I could have basked in the glow of superb parenting. The tween-ager, thinking more of her upcoming birthday I’m sure, declared presents were an absolute must, but since I’m sure she was also thinking of her limited cash flow from the Trump Chicken Condo business venture, she was thinking I would have to provide the money for any gifts. From the office where Dr. Hubby was wading through pages of credit card charges, I could hear rumblings and then very clearly “No presents. I can’t afford presents.”
“Well, you can’t have a birthday party without some kind of present,” declared the Tween-ager. I have always been a proponent of giving something of yourself, something that cannot be bought or given by anyone else. With this in mind, the seven-year-old declared, “We will give him a concert.” Some of you may recall from past blogs the Summer Concert for Plastic Barrel and Galvanized Pipe that lasted three hours and caused dogs to howl and hearing aids to squeal. Since this did not require the Tween-ager to delve into her egg money, she agreed. “A concert is the perfect gift.”
Immediately they abandoned the carrot cake, leaving me to finish up. Since I had been paying for violin lessons for three years and started the seven-year-old on guitar lessons this summer, I foolishly assumed the concert would involve, you know, actual musical instruments….and maybe a recognizable song or two. Ha!
“Where is an empty shoe box?”
“I can’t find the rubber bands.”
“I need two pencils that have not been sharpened.”
“Are you going to use these empty cans for anything?
“What are you guys up to? “
“Recycling! Who needs real drums when you have cans?”
“Multi-tasking. I’m checking out the science project on sound and vibrations while making a shoe-box guitar.”
“We need coke bottles filled with different levels of water. Not chemical bottles because you are going to have to blow on them.”
While I watched the cake and washed out coke bottles, rubber bands were stretched over the shoe box and various sized cans became the Tween-ager’s version of steel drums. Soon the “rehearsals” began. The seven-year-old strummed his “guitar”, the Tween-ager kept the tin can beat going, and I blew till I was light headed.
A few deafening minutes later, Dr. Hubby slipped me the credit card.
Happy Birthday, Honey! Hope you like your presents.