March 12, 2003
Another anniversary

I managed to miss an anniversary last week. Fortunately, it's not one that involves Tiffany. On March 6, I marked 25 years of playing the saxophone.

When I transferred from Sacred Heart Elementary School to William Morris Intermediate School in March of 1978, one of the options that became available to me was to learn a musical instrument - Morris had an excellent band program. I decided that this appealed to me, so the next step was to pick an instrument. My first instinct was the trumpet, but I was scheduled to get some orthodontics in the near future, so we thought that a woodwind would be more suitable. You really don't want to be pressing a metal object to your lips on a regular basis when you have a mouth full of braces. Turned out that the orthodontic work I got was a removable retainer, and I didn't get it until high school, but the specter of braceface had already wielded its influence.

And 25 years later, I'm still tooting. I've played the alto, tenor, and baritone saxes at one point or another, though the sax I own is the alto my folks gave me in 1980 as a graduation present. I've been fortunate to be able to keep playing in bands, especially after leaving school, because I'm basically a Sunday hacker who does it for fun and doesn't like practicing too much. Oh, I take performing seriously, but if I couldn't play in a group like the Rice MOB I probably wouldn't play any more. I don't get the same joy from playing solo, and I don't have the time, patience, or talent to turn myself into a featured performer.

So I'm happy with how things turned out and I'm happy that I'm still able to play after all these years. And of course, I can't leave this subject without noting that I've been playing the sax for longer than Mike Tremoulet has been alive.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on March 12, 2003 to See, I do have a life! | TrackBack

"The first anniversary you miss is often your last."

Posted by: Laurence Simon on March 12, 2003 11:56 AM

I shudder to think of all the things that I have been doing longer than Tremoulet has been alive.

Now where's that Geritol bottle?

Posted by: elizabeth on March 12, 2003 1:00 PM

I do remember you as a saxophone player in days gone by. Ironically, I saw another old friend from those days about a month ago that I hadn't seen in 20 years who is a featured perfomer of chamber music.

That was the problem with my adolescence: Too much sax and violins.

Posted by: William Hughes on March 12, 2003 4:57 PM

Dear Charles: Lest you forget, Nana and Grammy cooperated with us and Hap being in the business you would not be tooting your own horn. Please also remember that Tiffany redid the sax, restoring it to it's original condition. That sax has given Mom and I endless hours of story telling and pleasure, vicariously, for all those years. Thank you Larry Laurenzo and Max Wattris!
God luv ya,
Mom and Dad

Posted by: Dud on March 13, 2003 12:04 PM