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I am a Los Angeles-based twentysomething. I have a profession, and I have a secret life in music, and this blog isn't about any of that. I like Blogger because I can't read what you're thinking.

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Wednesday, September 21   >>

THE MUSIC THAT NEVER WAS

Shout out to The Girlfriend. She's not feeling well because she ate a burrito with jalapenos when she had ordered it without jalapenos. Sucks for her! Feel better, tatz (her nickname was toots, but it evolved into something that wouldn't make me seem like a complete woman-hating asshole)!

When I was in the 2nd grade, I started taking formal classical piano lessons. I hated it, but my parents insisted on it only to discipline me. My teacher was a major Nazi who slapped me on my hands every time I screwed up on a note. I cried at almost every lesson because I hated knowing that I was incompetent at 8 years of age. HAHA -- Man, I was a pussy!

Anyway, I dreaded the piano. The sound, the sight of it, everything. It pissed me off. Then one day, I had the opportunity to throw it all away!

The family was eating dinner at the table (oh, we're so nuclear!) when the doorbell rang. A white guy, probably 55 or so, smiled and walked inside the house with an "amazing" offer.

"HEY, GOMEZ FAMILY! Check this out! Does anyone here play... MUSIC?!"

My mom, gleaming with pride at my 3 months virtuosic experience of the piano, pushed me in front of this man's crotch. "Yes! Hugo does!"

"Well, good! Would you want to learn how to play... THE ACCORDION!?"

I vividly remember thinking to myself, holy shit, that is the gayest instrument in the entire world.

"Lessons are cheap for a limited time only! Whattya say, Hugo?"

My parents let me decide. I wasn't convinced. The salesman noticed. So he pulled out his accordion and played, like, the most kick-ass sickest polka shit I had EVER heard. It was fucking AWESOME.

I was slowly easing towards a yes. The salesman still knew I wasn't fully convinced. So what did he do?

(I swear, I am NOT making this up -- ask anyone in my family and they'll tell you exactly what I'm telling you) He pulls out the latest issue of Disney Adventures magazine.

Gracing the cover -- URKEL ("ch-ch-chigga-doo-ga-ga... As dayyys goooo byyyyyy..."). But this was a unique photo. It was Urkel with an ACCORDION.

"Whattya think NOW, Hugo?!"

I was signed up for 2 months.

The lessons were in a class setting on Wednesday nights. All I remember was an obnoxious older woman leading the class in an exercise that had something to do with the words "bass chord chord" in 3/4 time. That's all I remember. And my family, too. Bass chord chord. Bass chord chord.

Every other week there was a recital on Friday nights to showcase the students to their families.

There were three levels of "excellence." Blue was the top prize, awarded to a good performance of the song and a frozen SMILE. I swear, these people made us SMILE. If we didn't smile -- NO PRIZE FO' YOU. Yellow was second prize, where the music was "eh" and your smile was the only thing going for you. Brown was third prize, and you got that for playing REALLY "eh" and having an ugly face.

I got some yellow and some blue ribbons, along with a trophy for ULTIMATE TOP PRIZE at the end of my accordion stint.

It was very competitive. But at the end of those two months, I quit because I figured that I'd rather be a pussy on the piano than a pussy on the accordion.

THE MORAL OF THE STORY: Don't push your kids in front of any stranger's crotch.