Thursday, April 2, 2015

The Student Has Become the Teacher!

I was going for the trifecta today. The hat trick. The triple play. So many ways to embarrass The Pony, and so little time. I have barely a year left before he prepares to take himself off to college, you know. So I have to strike while the iron is hot. Make hay while the sun shines. Make my move while my wits are still about me.

This being Thursday and Hick's bowling night, The Pony had requested Pizza Hut for supper. We were on the way to the bank to withdraw our cash allowance for the week when I asked him to dial so I could order. I don't know what the deal was with that order-taker. She seemed like she knew what she was doing at first. Asked if it was for dine-in or carryout. Got my number. Verified my name.

So I gave the order, and she was silent. "Oh. Just a minute." Which was at least three. "Sorry. I'm not on my usual register. It doesn't have all the buttons." Seriously. She could have chiseled that order onto a cave wall with a newly-forged iron spike in the time it took her to fiddle with that register. "Now what was that again? Half what, and half what? Just a minute." I must have covered three city miles before she spoke again. "Half cheese and half supreme."

"Yes. That's right."

"Oh, I'm not talking to you." Well. Excuuuuse me! She was having someone smarter else put in the order for her. "Okay. Is that all?"

"No. I would like an order of breadsticks, and two extra marinara sauces."

"Just a minute."

I think I grew a long white beard waiting. I was only a couple blocks from the bank when she finally told me it would be 20 to 25 minutes until it was ready. "Okay, Pony. FINALLY! Twenty or twenty-five minutes. It is now...four twenty."

"Heh heh. Four twenty!" Let the record show that The Pony has a rudimentary understanding of the significance of that time. Can't send him off to college totally uninformed, now can I?

I withdrew the cash and chauffeured The Pony to a convenience store for a Sprite. He likes to partake of his pizza while it is still hot in the box.

"Okay. Let's head over there. It's been twenty minutes. Watch. It won't be ready. She'll say, 'You need to pull over until it's ready.' And I'll say, "Oh. Well it WOULD have been ready if I wasn't driving for fifteen minutes while you had me on the phone trying to take my order!"

The Pony ducked his head. He made a noise kind of like Tommy Lee Jones as Doolittle Lynn in Coal Miner's Daughter, when he was frustrated that Sissy Spacek as Loretta didn't know how to do something. That growling noise in his throat, like an ol' baarrrr, as Loretty put it.

"What? You don't think I'll do it?"

"I don't know."

"Uh huh. But you're kind of afraid I will, aren't you? We'll see..."

As luck (for The Pony) would have it, the girl took the money and handed out the pizza box. We headed on down the road. My Sirius XM 70s station started playing "The Entertainer." You know. By Scott Joplin, and used in The Sting, with Marvin Hamlisch tickling the ivories.

"I love to listen to this arrangement. To hear all the other instruments come in. Could you play this?"

"You mean on piano?"

"Yeah. That IS what it's written for, you know."

"I know. But other instruments play stuff like this all the time. Like for jazz band. I can't play it on piano. And I couldn't play this on the trombone, either."

"Do you miss being in band this year?"

"I don't miss being in band. I DO miss being a tromBONER!"

"Heh heh."

"Get it? Do you know why I said tromBONER like that?"

"Yes! I get it!"

"Well, that's what I always heard from people, and I had to tell them it was tromBONIST. But I wanted to make sure you heard me say tromBONER."

"Touche'. Well done."

That's my boy!


  1. Heh heh...that's why I don't play piano.

  2. I like tromboner better than trombonist.

  3. It sounds like The Pony is going to make the most of this year as well.

    Are you two keeping score?

  4. Tromboners are just as beautiful as pianists (heh heh) but in thier own way.

  5. joeh,
    Okay, I'll take your word for it, but I suspect the real reason is that you're too preoccupied with fingering your Martin.

    I agree. The way he said it, I thought he was telling people he was a trombonESS.

    We should be, because I am clearly in the lead right now.

    You and Joe make me feel like Gretchen Wieners! I am SO CLOSE to making "heh heh" happen.

    Let's not leave out the trumPETERS and the French HORNIES.