May 28 14

See, the thing about being a photographer is at some point you realize that you are basically Nick Moore from Family Ties.


Because now there’s not a garage sale that I miss, and there’s not a piece of old, ratty, decrepit, possibly full-of-bedbugs furniture sitting at the side of the road that I don’t inspect for possible usage. One man’s trash, you guys. One man’s trash. Is another man’s…art? I feel very little shame about this, actually, because I’m thisclose to paying 83 dollars and sixty-two cents in Canadian money (+ shipping) for a shabby chair without legs.

It’s funny because when you learn to be better as a photographer, you realize that you start to see everything differently. Mostly light. But really it’s everything. When we drive I will assess every park or landmark or barn or even, um, amazing vacant falling-apart buildings next to cemeteries. Everything is usable.

This past week there was a garage sale right across the street, and instead of broken chairs the first thing I noticed was the giant piano being sold for best offer. My brain refused to focus on anything else. Best offer. Boy did I have a best offer. Alas, it was not meant to be, since it was old and broken and too apparently too heavy to climb stairs.

But goodness knows I want it anyway.

I started playing piano when I was in third grade. My sister and I ripped a paper notice off of the wall in our school’s library offering affordable after-school piano lessons from a scary man named Mr. Kahn. Mr. Kahn spoke more German than English and yelled at lot about the metronome, but he turned me into a surprisingly skilled pianist, considering I cannot carry a tune to save my life. Even now, years later, when I hear certain music, my fingers get itchy and move to the music. I remember it all; every piece I ever played. Every sonata and minuet.

It’s like riding a bike, I guess. Only less aerobic. Because once you have been taught by a scary German, you never forget. Or something. kräftig! fröhlich! schnell! 

Have you ever seen this photo?


It pops up on Facebook every once in a while and gets shared a whole bunch (Note: I would love to give credit to the origin of this photo—but I can’t seem to locate it.) because I’m fairly certain that mine is not the only brain that works this way.

Well, you guys. Now I’m obsessed with trying to figure out how to get a piano into my home. I once heard that they practically give pianos away on Craigslist and kijiji if you’ll just come and remove the thing from the seller’s home. Piano logistics are complicated it seems, and not everyone is comfortable swinging pianos through second story windows.

I’m strong, seems easy enough. 

(photo: Bob Kusel, DePaul University)

Well, I guess now I’m off to find me a piano.

And maybe I’ll find some photo props while I’m at it.



  1. This one time when I was living as a South African/Australian traveller in London (I know.. I know.. I’m not South African / Australian), we found a mattress for our gross apartment with shared bath on the road and when I brought it home I got bed bugs. For reals.


    ali replied on

    That is the BEST/WORST story I have ever heard.


    mara replied on

    I’ve got more where that came from.


    Comment by mara on May 28, 2014
  2. My brother got his piano from a neighbor and he just had to move it down the street. So that seems to be a true story!


    Comment by Kristabella on May 28, 2014

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