November 27, 2005
Classical.
I took piano lessons for 10 years as a youngster and youngster adult. Every week my mother would cart my sister and me five whole blocks to Mrs. Emmel's home. She and her husband were virtually consumed by music and "perfect pitch" and "Julliard" were words used freely to illustrate the prowess of her two sons (who I don't recall seeing in the ten years that I invaded her home on a weekly basis). She had a school-marm air about her, a Cloris-Leachman-like presence that brings me ample comfort even today, if only because I can be entirely certain that she would not waste precious practice time reading anything posted on the information superhighway.

Inappropriate piano lesson story #1:

"Good. You'll notice in this next stanza that we have a key change. Do you remember what a key change is called?"

I thought. I considered my options. A-tion, I thought. I know there's an a-tion at the end.

Mrs. Emmel waited impatiently for my response. Had we not just discussed this a few weeks ago? I breathed deeply and thought for a few more seconds.

My consideration had paid off. I was pretty sure I remembered the correct answer.

"Ovulation."

I'm still pretty sure that wasn't right.

Inappropriate piano lesson story #2:

My best friend Karen came with us to lessons that day. My sister took the second lesson, so Karen and I waited for her in the downstairs tv room (although looking back, I'm quite sure these folks didn't even own a television) and looked at New Yorker magazines and other items of interest that were of course of no interest to fourth graders.

Karen was funny. Karen was mischievous. She once did a cartwheel in my basement and knocked a wood cabinet door off its hinges. My mom was so furious she didn't speak to Karen for three weeks. How cool was that? On this particular day, Karen must have been at the height of her hilarity. And I began to laugh harder than I had in years. And of course, given that it was likely the most inappropriate thing that could have happened at that particular moment, I therefore peed more than I had in years.

I couldn't control the flow. It soaked my pants. It soaked Mrs. Emmel's minimalist-inspired couch. Saturating the couch cushions, the flood sought release and began dripping from the cloth to the floor, which of course only made Karen laugh more heartily.

Finally empty, I panicked and did what every girl scout would. I stripped my clothes off and began sopping up urine with every conceivable bit of available fabric. Karen joined the effort and even used her mittens to soak up the pool that had darkened the carpet. We did our best until my sister played her last notes, and I then regrettably redressed myself. First the damp sweater, then the spotted mittens, and finally - shudder - the scarf.

As I left the family room I turned to see that the large dark spot on the couch remained. As did the matching circle on the carpet below. At least it had stopped dripping.

Mrs. Emmel never mentioned my indiscretion, which after years of college experience I'm convinced could not have gone unnoticed. Like a true best friend, Karen never spoke of the incident above a whisper. And like a ten year old without control over her own laundry, she probably wore those same mittens and scarf for at least a few weeks. Trouper.

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38 Comments:

Blogger JordanBaker said...

Oh lord. . .one of my best friends in Kindergarten had a blind mom. She used to pee on the couch and tell me not to tell her mom, thinking that 'cause she was blind, she wouldn't notice.

Blogger Wicked H said...

Ovulation and incontinence in one post about piano lessons....PRICELESS!!!!!!!!!!!

Blogger Mel said...
Blogger MoDigli said...

it's a true friend who'll keep your secret and STILL wear the pee-stained mittens for years to come! I wonder where Karen is today?

Blogger Anisa said...

ovulation...haha!!! reminds me of when i asked my 4th grade teacher what menopause was.

Blogger Sharkbait said...

I love it.

I thought I was the only one with strange piano lesson stories!!

Those are great!

Blogger Cheryl said...

Haha! I always wanted to take piano lessons. I wish I had so I could good stories to tell too.

Blogger Namaste said...

you never fail to have me in stitches.

stitches!

Blogger Kim said...

You peed your pants! You peed your pants!

*giggle*

Blogger Heather B. said...

That's hysterical. My clarinet and/or piano lessons were never that entertaining. Just a piano/bassoon teacher who smelled of mothballs.

Priceless stories you've got there.

Blogger Shel said...

I once peed my pants sitting against an outside wall at school with my crush David S. We were high on pixie sticks and fun dip, and he made me laugh so hard I couldn't stop myself. I peed right through my adidas soccer shorts (which were all the rage at the time), pretended like nothing had happened, and sat there until the sun had dried the wet spot between my legs. I don't think he even noticed.

Blogger Megarita said...

Oh jesus her using her mittens puts the icing on the cake. Brilliant. Brilliant!

Blogger missbhavens said...

Ovulation! Nice! Reminds me of a story my Mom told me about running in the woods at age 11 with her cousin, falling down onto a tree root-- pelvis first --and proclaiming she had a miscarriage.

Pee-soaked scarf and mittens? Now THAT'S friendship. Still friends?

Blogger erin said...

my piano teacher SCARED me...never to the point of peeing...but that absolutely HAS to be the 2 greatest stories about piano lessons...not that i've heard that many, but i love how you mix it up!!

Blogger Sizzle said...

ha ha ha ha. my piano lessons were never that entertaining! i had this aging hippy teach me guitar and piano for a couple years. her house was very cold with lots of wood artifacts and she didn't shave her legs.

i can't believe you peed! heehee.

Blogger Danielle said...

I find that second story to be highly suspect, because my dog claimed that she too had a hilarious friend "Karen" who caused the dark spot on the rug. Interesting...

Blogger mysterygirl! said...

I'm sure she neeeeeever noticed (I assume she sat next to you on the piano bench while you practiced?). Hilarious stories.

Blogger Debby said...

OMFG, ovulation and peeing on the couch all in one story. I could never pull something like that off. You still amaze me with your brilliance!! How do you do this?!

Keep up the great work, even if my ribs continue to ache this badly from all the laughter you bring me, it will be well worth it.

Blogger Shawn said...

I think you just made me pee my pants laughing...

Alas, I have no mittens to soak it up and no true 'pinky swear' friend to keep it secret...curse you woman...

My piano skoolin' came from the nuns. They scared the crap out of me. I had to walk a long, echoing hall to get to the room and the nun that taught me smacked my hand with a ruler...I think I lasted a month. I would have liked to have taken a pee there.

Blogger Sub Girl said...

hahaha same here, laughing now and almost peeing my pants...and they call me a grown-up. my piano teacher used to sit really close and spit would fly from her mouth whenever she said something emphatically!

Blogger babyjewels said...

That is a friend for life. Really, I don't think I could have helped you out there.

Blogger MKD said...

Your story is much better than my flute story, which in turns leads to my oboe story. Both of which are long and inappropriate.

Blogger Maliavale said...

Oh, the urine-soaked scarf. The horror! The humanity! You poor, poor kid. Perhaps the New Yorkers would have been a better choice. Although, now, those cartoons ... hoo. They might make an adult pee his or her pants. Or, you know, not.

I may have just peed my pants a little from reading that! So funny!

It reminds me of the time I was playing Balderdash with my parents, aunt, and uncle. But we didn't have the actual game, so we just randomly opened the dictionary and chose a word. Well, it was my turn to be the word chooser. I was eight.

I came across the most perfect word -- it was long and looked complicated. And then I read the definition, and granted I didn't know exactly what it meant, but the word sex was in it, so I thought it was funny.

With all the pride in my being, I announced the word to the players, "Please write the definition of the word.... nymphomaniac"

The room fell silent. SILENT.
Finally my mom looked at me and suggested I select a new word.

Blogger Bridget Jones said...

WONDERFUL Post!!!!

Really identify with Karen.

Hey did you stay in touch with her?

Anonymous sandra said...

Pee confession of my own: I wet my pants (aka, snowsuit)...or more accurately, a borrowed snowsuit...when I was in elementary school. I got lost while skiing, had to pee, and eventually just sat down in the snow and let it go. And tried to pretend like she would never notice.

Blogger LBseahag said...

karen deserves a medal...and you a grammy, cuz i am sure you're a great player!

Blogger Melliferous Pants said...

Urine soaked mittens and scarf are signs of a true friendship. God bless Karen!

Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

Karen is a true friend.

Got a chuckle out of story #1. :)

Blogger NARDAC said...

The worst thing about peeing in your clothes is how it goes from warm, to cold.

Anonymous your beau said...

Thank God you have hardwood floors!!!!!!!!

Blogger The Zombie Lama said...

To this day, I still have never laughed so hard that I peed. I guess I never truly lived... :o(

Blogger Libragirl said...

that is to funny. I was crying.

Blogger Spinning Girl said...

Love the stories. Guess she didn't have any mugs on hand for you to go in, huh.

Blogger Keith said...

I peed myself laughing and then I'm pretty sure I ovulated after reading those stories.

Blogger Weary Hag said...

This story is precious and hilarious! It reminded me a little of the Seinfeld episode where Poppi peed on Jerry's couch and it left a big round dark circle.

Your story would have made a far better episode!!! (complete with urine soaked mittens)

VERY entertaining.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah Kris.

So THAT'S what you were doing with my coat when I was walking back from the washroom in the pub.

For SHAME!

:)

Hugs from Sunny C.
Jorge

PS: Modulation. :) You rock. Technically, Ovulation is a type of key change.

and filled the room with wee wee steam, splendid

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