tune up...

it was one of my two favorite days of the year today. my #1 favorite day of the year is haircut day. i LOVE getting my hair washed, cut and blow dried. alas, i only allow myself the luxury once a year. which makes it even more of a treat! but haircut day was last month so i have another 11 months to grow and go before that day rolls around again.

so today was my second favorite day... PIANO TUNING DAY!!!!


paul dewalt is our piano guy. first let me tell you about our piano. so you two can become friends... it was given to me by my parents when i was 8 years old. i was the only noblin to take piano lessons. i wasn't very good. ever. but my parents gave me the piano when they moved out of my childhood home. the piano moved to atlanta 15 years ago. then moved into storage in florida for a year. un-airconditioned storage. then into our house here for a few more years with only toddlers banging on it. maxx seriously began to play it a few years ago. and so we thought that after 15 years and all those moves... it MIGHT need tuning. maxx's assessment (and he has a pretty good ear) is that it was in tune, with itself. ha. sounds like a marshall piano. 

*side note. i find it interesting that i hardly ever used that piano growing up mixed with the fact that we NEVER would have been able to afford a piano for our own home and how maxx plays the piano by ear and plays it almost every day. though they didn't know it at the time, my parents bought that piano for maxx to play. i just get to listen and enjoy. thanks mom and day. you had such foresight. ha. 

so someone gave me paul dewalt's number and the first couple of years he came out twice a year for our little untuned for over a decade baby. but he has been coming out every year for the last two years. and i eagerly look forward to his yearly tune ups because 1) our piano needs it. maxx is quick to tell me when we need to call paul. 2) after paul has tuned the piano he plays the most gorgeous music on it for about 10-15 minutes. making little adjustments now and then to perfect the tuning. it is like a little private concert. just for me. 

today while he was here i made myself a taco salad, sat on the couch in the family room (the piano is in the living room) and just listened to him tune the piano for over an hour. tune and play. tune and play. tune and play. and then just play some gorgeous classical music. magical.

and whilst i sat and chewed my lettuce i thought philosophically about tuning a piano. you see i am that person. that geeky nutty philosophical kind of Christian who actually believes the EVERYthing that happens can be a lesson for me. that maybe if God created all things, is holding all things together, and working through all things that even an untuned piano and a piano tuner could be an incredible metaphor for something that He is doing in my life. and during my  philosophical musing i also looked at wikepedia.  i wanted to read about how one tunes a piano...

Fine piano tuning requires an assessment of the interaction among notes, which is different for every piano, thus in practice requiring slightly different pitches from any theoretical standard... I

n all systems of tuning, every pitch may be derived from its relationship to a chosen fixed pitch, which is usually A440...

The relationship between two pitches, called an interval, is the ratio of their absolute frequencies. Two different intervals are perceived to be the same when the pairs of pitches involved share the same frequency ratio.

i would hear paul play a key on my piano and then hear him play the true note. then adjust the note. play it again. play the true note then my sharp or flat piano key again. until they sounds were in harmony.

and i thought about all the ways that my life can be out of tune. that one errant thought can be false and affect the song that i am playing to the world. and i thought about how there is a standard i can line my notes up to. and how when i go time and time again to the chosen fixed pitch (the Bible) i clearly hear the correct note. then i adjust my heart. my thoughts. my song to that note. and beautiful music is made.

and philosophically i loved this little caveat on a website about how to tune your piano yourself...

A "good" tuning is two different things: accurate (in tune) and stable (stays in tune). 

After that, the best way to keep your piano in tune is to (surprise!) tune it. Once the piano is in tune, it is easier to keep it in tune with touch-ups and regularly-scheduled tunings. Don't wait until you can't stand the sound anymore.

don't worry i am not tuning my piano myself. it was just for edification. i wouldn't miss having paul here for my yearly private concert.

here is hoping that i can stay accurate (in tune) and stable (stays in tune) and that i make some beautiful music with my life...