the gRumpcAst

Not for the mearly gloomy or the slightly crabby, the gRumpcAst is for the professional grumps. We feature rants, raves, dreams and some amazing music to provide a yang to the yin.

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The downside of bargaining.

euphonium and tuba
The instrument on the left is a euphonium.  The instrument on the right is a tuba.

A week ago, I wandered through one of the many salvage shops in Tallahassee and spotted what I thought was a small tuba.  I’ve been enamored with brass instruments after a visit to Festival International in Lafayette Louisiana a few years ago.  It’s a great festival and pulls in acts from around the French speaking world.  We thought we went there to hear Urban Trad (a great band from Belgium) perform, but it turned out that we went there to hear all sorts of wonderful musicians.  That year, for me, the theme was tubas.  There were tubas in at least 5 of the bands we heard.  In one amazing band from Quebec, there was  a sousaphone.

So when I saw the little “tuba” sitting on the shelf at the shop, I had to check out the price.   It was out of my comfort range so I forgot about it until today. I was back in that store and sure enough, it was still there.   The manager saw me checking it out and asked if I was going to buy it.  I said “not for that price” and made a counter offer a lot lower than I thought they’d go.  So now it’s mine, at least temporarily.

It turns out that it’s not actually a small tuba, but something called an euphonium.  Mine is a little dinged and two of the four valves need a bit of love.  It might be for sale or I might just keep it and toot on it.  Even with the dings and sticky valves, it’s making a very lovely noise when I blubber (is that the proper term?) on it.

I guess that the moral to this story is: “sometimes a good deal at the salvage shop is a lifestyle decision.”

This post is dedicated to furry fat boys of the 1999 James Madison University Marching Band tuba section.  Greece rocked.

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