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Thanks, Christopher, for these juicy vignettes. My favorite is “don’t.” Here is my vignette, different in style but inspired by your story. It is based on a true story about my husband:

He was born a thrasher. Chubby, with big eyes the color of your favorite well-worn blue jeans, and the longest dark eyelashes anyone had seen. Day one, he walked out of Kindergarten after the first five minutes. Home was four blocks away.

There in the basement, where his aunt lived, he watched her put a Beatles record on the turntable. She picked up a broom and handed it to him. He knew exactly what to do: play it like a guitar. Because, you see, he wanted to become a guitar.

He thrashed his way through Detroit, slaying all in his arena, and then bought a one-way ticket to Hollywood. Studying with the masters, he was told, “You can’t play rhythm. Here, take this tape and come back in a month.” Check. Then another master said, “You can’t play leads. Here, take this tape and see me in a month.” Check. The masters were pleased.

In 1993, he met a female singer-songwriter and fell in love. They made uniquely creative music together. Three years later, after a bad day in the recording studio, he went to the woodshed with his axe. Didn’t come out for a week.

When he egressed, his body had been transformed. Like the Fender Strat slung low around his hips, his head was long and lean, topped with a black beret off to one side; his neck was girded by a steel truss rod and jumbo frets; and his body was sleek, firm, polished. He resonated with 9th chords and exotic riffs. I named his guitar “The Brat.” After that, everyone called him Thrasher, for he had, at last, become a guitar. A nasty, beautiful, keen, cocky guitar.

And, as in the film This is Spinal Tap, no one is allowed to touch him. No one but me.

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