Today I stopped at Starbucks and used the last of a gift card. Finding that I still owed twelve cents, I pulled out my coin purse and rummaged for a dime and pennies. “Is that a skate key?” inquired the barista, peering down inquisitively. “Drum key,” I answered. “Oh, are you a drummer?” I resisted the urge to lie and instead answered truthfully, “Don’t I wish? Actually, I raise drummers.” This too, is an obsolete truth. It has been ten months since I used the drum key.
How often do you clean out the nooks and crannies of your purse? In doing so, do you discover relics, ticket stubs and memories? Last time I went on a handbag cleaning spree, I found a worn ribbon of paper, saved from a memorable fortune cookie. I had carried it since a family reunion some ten years previous. The drum key is not so ancient. Up until June of last year, I taught music. I got used to setting up and tearing down my drum kit. I also directed and attended a number of performances where it was advantageous to have a drum key handy. So, it came to reside in my purse along with my small measuring tape and my P38 can opener. Like a good boy scout, a good mother is always prepared.
These days, I work in a pathology lab and come home to an empty nest. One has to wonder what I am doing with a drum key in my wallet. One also wonders if it makes me more interesting to carry a drum key or a skate key? But, maybe that’s just the writer in me that wonders.