The Sweet Revenge of Children

My parents decided in their infinite wisdom that in order for me to become as well-rounded an individual as possible, I should fully explore the world of music. I think that they had some vague notion that filling the house with melodic etudes and roulades would be a civilizing influence. What they got instead was several months of my failing to produce anything other than a remarkably accurate impression of a cat being slowly run over by a truck.

Unfortunately for them, it turns out that I actually like music and even when my parents (in a last ditch effort to save their sanity, no doubt) moved the entire family to a school without an orchestra, I insisted on playing an instrument. My folks even tried to prevent me from joining my new school’s band by making me wear braces, but I would not be deterred and decided to play the saxophone.

For the next 7 years I tortured everyone within half a mile with my hideous squawkings, wailings, and tortured cries. Sometimes I even played the saxophone. About all I can say about this time in my life is that we all survived it, even if my parents now claim to not be able to hear certain pitches, and I have a profound appreciation for the arts and jazz music in particular.

I mention all of this so that you can appreciate the sweet irony of this week’s developments. Unbeknownst to me, the Hobbit has decided that in addition to the regular horrors of middle school, she is also going to join the band. She also expressed in interest in playing the saxophone. I can’t be sure, but I’m reasonably certain that her choice of instrument was largely motivated by the fact that I have kept my horns with me carefully stored away.

In any event, this week the school offered a beginner’s “band camp” where our budding musicians learned how to assemble their instruments and make a few sounds (mostly on purpose). So all this week I have been subjected to the horrible honking of a neophyte saxophonist.

I had long ago buried any knowledge of having once produced such noises myself, but listening to the Hobbit valiantly try to honk out “Hot Crossed Buns” brought it all screaming back.

So it appears that I have somewhere between 3 and 7 years of having the Hobbit exact revenge upon me for the sins I once inflicted on my parents. It has never been more apparent to me than right now how true it is that children are your parents’ revenge.


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