Archive for December 27th, 2006

Revenge of the Luthier

atp108a.jpgThis has been a big Christmas for my parents. Both of them retired from teaching this year, so my brother and I decided we should forego our usual cheap and late gifts and give them extravagant retirement/holiday gifts that they could use in their newly-found personal time.

My Dad is an avid outdoorsman, and my brother had gone hiking in the mountains with him the last time he visited. He said Dad frequently wondered aloud what the altitude was, so he came up with the idea to get him a really kick-ass climber’s watch with a heart-rate monitor and altimeter.

One down, one to go.

Mom lives in Winfield, KS, which is home to the amazing Walnut Valley Festival. Top acoustic musicians and competitive players come to this small town every year. Thousands of people descend on the county fairgrounds, and only some of them actually purchase tickets. Many spend the bulk of their time in the camping area, fiddling al fresco and partying with friends.

Mom plays piano, so I knew she never got to partake in the musical fun. I came up with the idea to get a dulcimer. It’s basically the inside of a piano, right? And it’s portable. So I contacted my friendly local luthier and had him ship me the beautiful instrument you see here. He shipped it promptly and didn’t insist on pre-payment, instead including an invoice in the shipping box.

Here’s the problem. I haven’t paid the luthier yet. I don’t know what luthiers do if you welsh on payment, but this dude resides somewhere in the coal-mining belt of southwest Virginia, so I don’t think I’d like the punishment much.

Here are my nightmare scenarios:

  • The Dusty’s Bad Pun scenario – I get “strung up”.
  • The Grade School Music Class scenario – Forced to play “Jimmy Cracked Corn” on the autoharp, with recorder accompaniment.
  • The 12 Days of Christmas Scenario – Eleven cloggers clogging… on my head.
  • The Hokie Treatment – Forced to post bond for the next Virginia Tech athlete to be arrested.
  • The Taste of Your Own Medicine – He pokes ruthless fun at me on luthier.wordpress.com.
  • The Old Fake Ad Gag – Puts my address on a “banjo player wanted – must love Zeppelin & showtunes” ad in Dirty Linen.
  • The Gimp Scenario – I get to meet Zed. Wearing my “special outfit”.

Sir, if you’re reading this – the check is in the mail. I mean, like, yesterday.

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It’s the end of the year, and even though The Extrapolater has only existed for three months, they have been an extremely productive three months. I have stroked my own ego by looking back through the archives and selecting the 10 posts that I thought were the best. Some of them attracted national attention, some of them I was just quietly proud of despite the resounding silence. What do you think?

Spears Skirts Brittany’s Channel

Mangino Hungry For More

Kramer Lands Film Deal

Is Bob Knight Infecting America?

A Whig Whose Time Has Come

Iraqi Activists Adopt Western Tactics

Peyton Manning Complicates Everything!

What Kerry Really Meant

Open Letter To A Pedantic Killjoy

A Smudge of Fudge From Pudge

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