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#2264895 - 04/21/14 10:09 AM Day brightener
Chuck Behm, CPT-E Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/12/10
Posts: 833
Loc: Boone, Iowa, USA

Hi all - I recently went out for a day of tuning and arrived at a home where the year before a little girl of four had pulled up a chair while I tuned, and watched the process intently from start to finish. She had asked questions, and I had explained them the best I could, showing how some notes were too high, and some notes were too low, and had to be fixed. (No point of explaining inharmonicity to a pre-schooler!). She really was serious about learning, however, so I did the best I could. Most kids (as you all know) will watch for a minute or two before wandering away. Not much excitement for kids used to the fast pace of TV, video games, etc. This little girl had a much longer attention span than most.

Well, this time when I arrived I was met at the door by a nanny who was watching a toddler. The little girl who had been so interested the year before, it seemed, was off to kindergarten for the day. She had been disappointed that she would not be home to "help" with the tuning, according to the nanny, so she had written out some notes and left them with the nanny with instructions to give them to "Mr. Chuck" to help him out:


When I left, I told the nanny to be sure to thank Miss Emily for her help - that I checked out her concerns and made sure everything was okay, and that I would try to arrange my next visit for later in the afternoon, when she would be home from school. Her note (pretty dang good for a 5 year old) made me smile - thought you might enjoy it as well. Chuck

P.S. - If any of you know where to find the 17th (or even the 3th) C key - let me know. Thanks!
Tuner/Technician/Rebuilder/Technical Writer

"The act of destruction is infinitely easier than the act of creation" - Arthur C. Clarke

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#2264899 - 04/21/14 10:24 AM Re: Day brightener [Re: Chuck Behm, CPT-E]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014

Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7439
Loc: Rochester MN
Delightful !!!

The 17th C key is located in the imagination of a child. And, that exactly were it should be located and enjoyed forever.
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

#2264960 - 04/21/14 01:19 PM Re: Day brightener [Re: Chuck Behm, CPT-E]
TimR Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/04
Posts: 3672
Loc: Virginia, USA
I dunno. 3rd key from the bottom is C1, right? 13th key would be an F, but to a child it might just be the white key next to a row of black keys, and that might seem like C. And the 17th would be a C again.

Sounds like an awesome kid.
gotta go practice

#2265040 - 04/21/14 06:26 PM Re: Day brightener [Re: Chuck Behm, CPT-E]
Bosendorff Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/11/12
Posts: 626
Super lovely story. Thanks for sharing !

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#2265054 - 04/21/14 07:03 PM Re: Day brightener [Re: Bosendorff]
Gerry Johnston Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 04/12/13
Posts: 151
Loc: Haverhill, MA
Thanks for the story Chuck. Encounters with young children are one of the most enjoyable aspects of this business.
Gerry Johnston, Registered Piano Technician
Haverhill, MA
(978) 372-2250

#2265156 - 04/22/14 12:51 AM Re: Day brightener [Re: Chuck Behm, CPT-E]
Grandpianoman Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/12/05
Posts: 2726
Loc: Portland, Oregon
Great story Chuck....she may well be a wonderful piano tuner when she grows up! smile

#2265201 - 04/22/14 07:32 AM Re: Day brightener [Re: Grandpianoman]
Chuck Behm, CPT-E Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/12/10
Posts: 833
Loc: Boone, Iowa, USA

Thanks all - She's a pretty special little girl. I have her note pinned to the wall of my office next to my tuning cards so that when I grab my appointments for the day, I can glance at it to get my head screwed on straight - to remind myself what's really important. While obviously the money one makes tuning is important (it is to our budget at any rate) what really matters is the lives one touches and the instruments one maintains. The fact that what you do as a tuner helps both youngsters learning to play the piano create beautiful music, and talented pianists be able to close their eyes and lose themselves in what their minds and fingers are creating - that's what one can sit around the nursing home one day and be thankful that he had a role in playing. Chuck
Tuner/Technician/Rebuilder/Technical Writer

"The act of destruction is infinitely easier than the act of creation" - Arthur C. Clarke

#2265450 - 04/22/14 06:51 PM Re: Day brightener [Re: Chuck Behm, CPT-E]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2481
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
Well, I would prefer to have a bowling alley installed in my brain than tuning near any of the pre-schoolers I've met. It seems as if you managed to get one of the more pleasurable experiences out of one Chuck....I'm still waiting to find one like that.
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

#2265478 - 04/22/14 07:36 PM Re: Day brightener [Re: Emmery]
Chuck Behm, CPT-E Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/12/10
Posts: 833
Loc: Boone, Iowa, USA

Emmery - I've got 5 (soon to be 6) grandkids under 8 - 4 of them under 6. I believe I'm starting to think more and more like them. Chuck
Tuner/Technician/Rebuilder/Technical Writer

"The act of destruction is infinitely easier than the act of creation" - Arthur C. Clarke


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