Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Dr. Electro hosts a Tea (Episode 2)

 Letters from Josh

  Grandpa Urban   9/28/20                                                                           Letter 25

  Howdy, folks!  How’s everyone doing over there?  Well, I feel like a darn grandpa.  Or, how I’d expect it to feel, at least in a musical sense.  Earlier this afternoon, my phone buzzed, and it wasn’t a mundane Monday message about political causes I never signed up for, or other trivialities.  No, it was a message from a former guitar student turned buddy.  “My debut album is online.”  We need to go back to a hot July Thursday afternoon a decade ago to get the full picture here.  Anthony had stopped by for his first lesson with his dad.  A beginner’s electric guitar emerged from a gig bag, and I showed him how to play what so many others have learned...Black Sabbath’s Iron Man.  He quietly mastered that song, and then another, and another . The summer faded into Autumn, like it always does, but Anthony defied the trends, and kept practicing.  The winter sleets fell, we both walked through good times and bad, and Anthony kept practicing.  And writing - and listening - and growing.  The years passed, we played shows together, recorded collaborations, and the day came when we “switched chairs”, and the student became the teacher, although we had become friends long before that.  And now, today, I sat down in my purple room, put on some headphones, and did some listening myself.  Wow.  Check it out on Spotify.  I couldn’t be more impressed. 

Two themes jump to the forefront:  1. The process is just as important as the finished product.  I’m so grateful I got to be involved a bit with the journey back in the day, and see him take it to fruition.  2.  One needn’t wait for an exotic locale, or the blessings of a famous record producer.  Start today, and see what happens.  A good work is undeniable, or, at the very least, a heck of a lot of fun to build.  Anthony, as I love to say...For those about to rock - we salute you!  Or rather, for those already rockin’, we salute you! 

  And now, folks, are you ready for the second installment of Dr. Electro?  "Previously on Dr. Electro - the Doc labors on a stormy night and watches his language, answering a surprise knock at the window.  His slightly-cracked friend Rutherford has come to call, with an entreaty to help “the Orphans”, whatever that means…”

Dr. Electro - Episode 2 - The Windows and the Orphans  

  Rutherford was a piece of work on a dry day, when he was calm, not caffeinated, with the sun shining, literally or metaphorically.  Cast him into a tempest, and well, the Doctor was reminded of his aunt from California...minus the bandana. It seemed unwise to offer coffee in his present state, so chamomile tea was procured from behind a giant battery.  “Calm yourself, man!”  “CALM?!” roared Rutherford in reply.  “CALM?  How can you request tranquility when Outrage is afoot?  Dare you relinquish a tizzy when Travesty scrawls abomination with an icy hand?”  His teacup rattled in the grimy saucer with such vengeance that Dr. Electro pulled up a chair. Resigning himself to whatever rants Rutherford brought with him, Electro settled in to listen, as an ill wind hunted misgivings in the corners. “Kingsley’s got to ‘em...I just know it.  When Sister Agnes went to the third floor last Wednesday, it was fine . Just fine.  A normal evening.  But then she thought she saw the books.”  “Books?”  “Yes, books.  For starters, kids these days don’t read.  They shoot each other with slingshots, or chase about like squirrels during a bumper crop of acorns, old chap, but never read!”  Rutherford was positively beside himself, and the Doctor had to blink to make sure there weren’t two Rutherfords waving their arms at him, sideburns quivering like the very squirrels he was referencing.  “They’ve been reading all week.  Nary a slingshot to be found, even among the rascals.  They just sit quietly, and are suddenly taking orders well - the nuns don’t even have to use rulers.  In fact, on Saturday evening, one reminded Sister Loretta not to be late with the baths.  Don’t you see what this means, man?” cried Rutherford, leaping up, and sending his teacup crashing on the floor.  “No” replied Electro, feeling the blood rush to his face in annoyance at the melodrama, leaning over to collect the shards.  “Well...I don’t, either.  I had hoped you would, old chap!”  “What’s in the books anyway?”  “Nobody knows!  They hide them and the sisters aren’t even sure that they exist.  But they keep catching glimpses.  And Monday night, Timmy went missing. A window was broken, too.”  Electro felt his curiosity begrudgingly replace ire, along with a dash of charity.  “A window?”  Maybe the kids needed some help.  At least it would answer the problem of Rutherford’s tizzy. 

As the rain fell, across town, a single lamp burned in a room of echoes, plus one…  (To be continued.)

1 comment:

Theresa said...

Okay! You have my attention and this is very good. I’m going to wait for the next section!