It is safe to say that if not for the music from the TV game show, “The Price is Right,” I might not be a musician today. There were many factors which planted and germinated my nascent desire to be a musician. The first was my Roman Catholic church closing. They had a folk group and a pretty bad one at that. The music did nothing for my latent inspiration and church was boring. When the church closed my parents took us to the next church down the road, the Wesleyan’s. There, for the first time, around the age of five, I heard and fell in love with the sound of a well played pipe organ. It was loud and soft, dissonant and harmonically pleasing, capable of being played fast and rhythmic or sustained. It shook the walls, the floor and the pews. What power and versatility it possessed.
It wasn’t until my freshman year of High School, about ten years later, that I actually began studying music and that was because my parents purchased a small organ. Prior to that though, during my junior high years I fell in love with the pop/disco/jazz music from Bob Barker’s game show, The Price Is Right. We didn’t have the internet in those days so three TV stations, a few radio stations and records were all we had for inspiration and entertainment.
I lived three miles from my school and my house was the last stop on the bus route. It took almost an hour to get home. So instead of taking the bus and missing the first half hour of “The Price Is Right,” I ran home in about half an hour and was able to catch the beginning. Don’t tell my mother, she’d kill me if she found out and lucky for me, she never learned those “If Sally was traveling at 30 mph by car . . . .” equations. She didn’t question how or why I got home half an hour early, although, I suspect she knew. The act of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook. She certainly possessed an uncanny wisdom.
I hated gym class because three days each week, it sapped my energy for what was really important to me: Running to get home in time for the opening theme song. And, we were also required to take showers which was stupid because I was about to run home and work up a real sweat.
It is also safe to say that I also owe my early physical fitness to “The Price Is Right,” too. I am sorry President’s Council on Physical Fitness, but gym class was a waste of time. I also skied, hiked, biked and lived on a lake. I barely worked up a sweat in gym class and most of my out of school time was spent doing real activities. I really could have used that three hours spent in gym class doing something more productive.