A few days ago a tearful son gave me the news about his friend. I did not know the boy.
My son plays the bass; they had sometimes played together, in the music room, at lunch.
Lately, they have not - nobody had.
Years ago, I posted comments on the site of a national newspaper under my name; Scott Luft. My youngest son came home from elementary school one day - which that year was a wonderful environment for him - and said he and his excellent teacher had googled my name and my comments on that site had come up. At the time elementary teachers were threatening job action if they, ridiculously, were not paid the same rate as high school teachers. The government was poised to introduced full-day junior kindergarten and was, stupidly, acquiescing to make that a windfall for teachers, rather than an important step to increase the role of the physical school as an anchor of a community.
I switched my online comments to the "Cold Air" pseudonym.
One reason I started blogging was the provincial test results for our local school - particularly for boys. It had never occurred to me that avid readers would be unable to write, but the test results showed that to be the case. I knew that children reading was likely in households where parents read, so I started writing - hoping that would lead to my boys writing.
I can't say the same about playing music - I generally play the stereo. But, I've also read children are likely to read simply if there are books in the house, and in my house, there are many instruments, one of which, a bass, came from my sister - and through a combination of lessons and an uncanny ability to learn by ear, the bass is the instrument one of my sons sometimes played in the music room, at lunch.
When I started writing the blog, I did so around numbers ... and those numbers were usually regarding electricity ... and that just kept building. I can't claim I'm disappointed, because much of what I started criticizing 28 months ago is now generally accepted as a totally dysfunctional government mismanages the sector.
But I have not addressed other relevant topics that I don't have the safety of statistics to argue with;
I have not been active in my local community;
I haven't written much on education and the role of schools;
I have not argued that the "late bus" is far more important to communities, like mine, than smaller class sizes;
I have not called out the teachers' union on preventing willing teachers from leading extracurricular activities;
I have not written that article on the "it gets better" better campaign being applicable to far more young people than those who are gay;
I did not call out the socially blind legal systems that threw away millions of public dollars to enforce the spending of multiple times more on roads because people got hurt driving poorly - as if what people need is better roads before better community services in better schools.
Today, writing is an inadequate, but available, therapy - and speculation and introspection could never explain what has happened.
The obituary reads, in part:
"Passed away suddenly at his home... at the age of 17."I did not know Cody; I will remember him, as I hope others may, by my son's wounded words when I dumbly asked what he played.
"As an expression of sympathy donations in memory of Cody may be made to Park Street Collegiate “Music Department“.
He played everything.