Instrumental Relationships.

Instrumental Relationships. A Fictional Functional Family

The past week has included a series of family dinners and a wedding celebration. It has been wonderful to have the children, their wives/ partners plus grandchildren all in the same place.

At one stage in a quiet moment I got to ask the daughter how things were going with her bloke. “Is it violins or more of a tuba kind of relationship? She responded with a grin and said it was more like a mandolin. I took this as good sign. Some years ago she had pointed out, while I was playing my mandolin, that she felt it was a happy instrument - no matter how maudlin the mandolin chord being played it always sounded cheerful and made her smile.

This raised one of the important questions to be addressed as we enter the New Year. If your relationship was a musical instrument what would it be?

We agreed that if it is usually serene with soaring tone but can get screechy if put under too much tension then maybe it is a violin relationship. When played well it can be wonderful but temperamental, being very sensitive to changes in room temperature. Someone chimed in to note that the only way to get a tune out of a piano accordion was to squeeze it which was perhaps a metaphor too far for some relationships. I have always held this instrument in high regards. You have to keep squeezing it to make it work but it really needs wing mirrors mounted on the sides so you can see what your hands are doing. By way of contrast the harmonica relationship is smaller but limited by the fact that it requires the player to suck and blow to get anything out if it.

Of course then the matter of the eternal triangle was brought up as this often plays a part in the orchestration of a marriage. The tingle tangle of the triangle was deemed a solo instrument and very difficult for three people to play at once and no one could recall the last time they had heard of a successful triangle trio.

The banjo got a mention; it was felt that a relationship that played like a banjo would not be a subtle one where all was mystery but be loud and bright with a complete lack of sustain. In musical terms, the banjo is, along with the accordion, an instrument that people either like or loath. Paired together, some people regard any combination of banjo and accordion as a diabolic mix that can only lead to some kind off family feud.

If a relationship was described as a tuba, all oompah oompah in bass notes then it may mean that it is one in which the couple march to the same tune even though it may be leading them to a battle. The bagpipe relationship would already be on the battle field with friends and family retreating to get as far away as possible as it can be deafening when standing too close.

Is your relationship a piano? The piano relationship with its mechanical workings hidden away means that sometimes when your lift the lid you discover there is a lot going on out of sight. They are big, heavy, hard to move and when you do shift them they immediately go out of tune.

If your relationship seems to be more of a ukulele, small, easy to carry and simple to play then this will provide some compensation for its complete lack of acceptance as being an actual musical instrument.

The guitar on the other hand is the perfect metaphor for a relationship. You can hold it in your arms

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