Monday, August 15, 2011

My First Guitar and the Death of My Career as a Musician

When I was little, I loved to sing.  I still do, but when I was little, it was an insane passion that I would thrust upon anyone that would listen.  Whenever there was a lull in a conversation, I would only wait for a few moments before a bellowed out a tune or two.

For some horrifying reason, my parents thought it was an endearing quality.  Probably because I’d found something to talk about other than Mario and his incredible exploits.  It probably warmed their heart to know that video games hadn’t turned my brain into mush.  That’s why one year for my birthday I received the ultimate gift of ultimate gifts:  my very own guitar.

As I pulled the beautiful instrument from its box, my eyes shined, my heart swelled, and I knew that I would be THE GREATEST MUSICIAN TO EVER LIVE.

Now, I’m ashamed to admit it today, but I used to be a HUGE fan of country music.  I mean, enormous.  Nowadays, I prefer the harsh beat of a kick drum and someone wailing on an electric guitar.  The scratchier their voice, the better.  Me First and the Gimme Gimmes are gods.  But back then?  Back then, it was all about the Billy Ray Cyrus.  Specifically, “Achey Breaky Heart.”

For some reason, I considered Mr. Cyrus the greatest thing to happen to music since Mozart, except better than that because Mozart didn’t even have words to go with his music—unless you counted boring fat ladies howling about.  Surely Billy Ray Cyrus must have invented singing accompanied by music.

Anyway, my Achey Breaky Fever reached the point I actually begged my mom for…a mullet.  *shiver*  I know, I know.  What was I thinking?

Thankfully, my mother knew better.  She saved me from lots of hair disasters over the years, and for that, I owe her…although she didn’t save me from the Junior Prom Spiked Hair Fiasco…but that one was out of her control.

Anyway, the guitar only fueled my desire to perform.  I began to play that guitar everywhere, strumming away, creating music that would have made Beethoven’s ears bleed.  My mother, proving her unconditional love, never once discouraged me from my dreams.  She even videotaped me.

 Unfortunately, with every golden age, there must be an end.  Some golden ages can slowly fade.  Mine went out with a bang.  Or, rather, a smash.

One day, my mom invited one of my cousins over to play.  It was going well.  I forget what we played, but it was probably some rendition of army men.  I often played army men.  It was a lot of fun defending the world from bad guys.  Usually someone had kidnapped the president’s daughter or something and I had to get her back.

When the game fizzled out, I decided to show my cousin my prized possession.  His eyes lit up when he saw my beautiful guitar.  I was so proud my chest was practically bursting.  He asked me if he could play it.  That was when disaster struck.

I went to my mom about the destruction, but there was nothing that could be done.  The guitar was destroyed, gone to guitar heaven.  When the bag of trash containing my broken relic was carried out, it was like I was attending the funeral of one of the greats.

That single moment scarred my love of music forever.  I don’t sing in public anymore, and I don’t play any instruments.  I guess I’m afraid I’ll get attached and some mean little boy will come along and jump on my guitar again.  Now, only one person gets to hear me sing:  my wife.

Have you had passions that were ruined by tramatic incidents?  Or just a mean kid that broke your toys?  Share your stories in the comments!


  1. It's okay. I had a similar love of Billy Ray Cyrus and Garth Brooks. ;) "~I got friends in LOW places, where the WHISKEY drowns, and the beer CHASES my BLUES AWAY~" I still remember the damn lyrics.

  2. Oh yeah! Former country fans unite! *air banjo*

  3. So...that's why you make us go to the country festival in Oklahoma every September?

  4. Ha ha! Your toons and tunes cracked me up in this one. I REALLY need to sleep, because I thought the last panel said "standing ovations or b-b-boobs!" Back in the day, us sophisticated types didn't call it a mullet, it was a bi-level haircut;)

  5. @thealmig You'll watch Neal McCoy's overly starched pants and LIKE IT!!! Who would want to miss him rap the Beverly Hillbillies theme? Certainly not this guy, and certainly not you!

    @Michele I do recall the phrase "business in the front, party in the back." And as for the last panel, don't worry, I thought it said the same thing a few times, and I'm the one that typed it, ha ha.


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