You can view my new post full-screen here in adobe Slate. Thought I would try something new.
If all you want is boring old text then fine. Here you go.
The first time I picked up a guitar…well, the truth is, I wanted to pick up a ukulele from the local music shop instead. I’d gotten birthday money and done a whole bunch of research on ukuleles and how to learn to play them and was thrilled with the idea of how easy the internet said it was.
It was the summer after my first year of university and I was struggling to find a job (the story ends with me never having found one, by the way) and I was deteriorating with nothing to do living back home with my parents in my small home town.
When I announced my intentions of using my birthday money to purchase a nice ukulele to my parents…they both frowned and reminded me that my brother had left an old guitar behind when he moved out. He’d gotten it from my uncle, who’d gotten it when he was a kid. So you couldn’t exactly call it a legendary guitar, at least not in my mind…not at that point. And with my dreams of sweet ukulele music in pieces, I went downstairs to look at the poor old guitar. In gold cursive, Takamine was inlaid on the head of the guitar between the tuning pegs. Of course, I didn’t know that that’s what they were called yet. Or anything like that. The guitar’s strings were pretty much all broken. I think the poor thing had three intact, and it had a big dent in the back. It was like a person who had half their teeth knocked out and a big black eye to finish it off. In effect, it looked like a hockey player.
Takamine is a name I know well now. Then though, I just looked at the guitar, showed it to my mother. I wanted to take it to the local shop to see if they could help me fix it up, but upon seeing it now, I wasn’t sure if it could be fixed. Not with that dent in the back. My mom said it might not even be worth fixing.
At the music shop, they told us the opposite though. The dent wasn’t all that big and didn’t affect the sound of the guitar. It gave the guitar character, they said with an encouraging smile. And the strings could be replaced easily, as well. They said they would take it in a fix it up and before I really even knew it, I was signing up for lessons on top of everything else.
Months later, I was on my way to playing some of my favourite songs and I picked it up quickly. Takamine and that guitar became legendary to me. It still is. Apparently, when my uncle got this guitar, the company had just started mass producing the guitars in, I believe, Japan. They were making really good guitars still, but because the work was outsourced, they were cheap. And my guitar has a beautiful, reverberating sound. I like it best when new strings get worn in. It’s not too bright, not too dull, just right.
Guitar got me through that boring, jobless summer when I needed it. Music always gets me through. When I was in high school, suffering through those angsty teenage years, I always had my headphones in. I knew that no matter what, I always had my favourite music to listen to. I listened to it while I was learning to write, and I listened to it throughout my undergrad. My tastes changed, but the everpresent quality of amazing, beautiful music did not.