My sister’s piano

By: Raymund Fernandez July 31,2018 - 09:37 PM

FERNANDEZ

ERRATUM: Kinutil apologizes for a factual error in the previous column entitled, “Dinner at Sunzibar.” I misidentified Sunzibar’s partner as Dr. Bong. The correct name is Dr. Lorel Dee M.D.

If anyone were to ask: ”What have I been mostly doing these past two months?”

I have been fixing my sister’s piano. But we go a bit too far ahead of the story.

We have always dreamed of owning a piano.

We have an electric one. But as the children have been getting better at it, they have been talking about why an acoustic piano is so much better than a digital one. I understand that it is all about touch and the weight of the keys.

There is also the degree of control over the foot pedals: una corda, the soft pedal; sostenuto, the sustaining pedal; and the damper. I am taking their word for it.

I do not play piano. But perhaps I will. One day soon.

My sister’s piano had been eaten by termites. She gave it to me, perhaps to see what I could do to save it from the dumpsite. I have never fixed a piano before. But I am a good mechanic with extensive experience in woodworking.

I play a bit of music.

And I love fixing things. I do not always succeed. But even where I fail I always learn how the thing works, so to speak.

The final stage of every toy I ever had was when I took it apart. I don’t always succeed putting it back together again.

Only in later years did I learn about “reverse engineering.” I was only having fun with tools.

By now, I have quite a collection of tools for taking things apart, putting them back together again, cutting, soldering, welding, forming, and painting. And yes, a computer for finding out how Youtube thinks It should be done.

But, as I said, I have never fixed a piano before.

This was going to be a learning adventure for which I believed I was sufficiently equipped.

A piano, after all, is only a machine, albeit made mostly of wood. As it turned out, It was not easy. It was two months of hard labor. After everything,

I needed a professional to do the finer job of tuning.

As the piano man told it, I was lucky I did not commit any fatal errors. Apparently, there are several possible ways to destroy a piano. I did not do any.

And he was quite impressed with the paint job. Thus, I now have a new baby in the house.

But I do realise you may not make any sense of this act of fixing things, let alone an old Lyric upright piano.

There is a message here of universal importance

. These last two months, I have come to understand exactly the way a piano works as both machine and musical instrument. All the better for me to learn how to play it one day in my ripe years.

But perhaps that’s how things work for all of us.

As for instance, the matter of governance.

And we might have something to gain from these dark years when everything seems to be falling apart on their own.

We clearly have so many things to fix after all these.

So much has been torn apart.

The next problem we face is only to put things back together again. By this act we might perhaps learn how to finally to run a government.

That would be a good lesson for all of us and our
leaders.

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