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You Shall Look At These Pictures Of Tortoises While I Practice My Flute

Hello. I do not have time to pay attention to you. My flute recital for Mrs. Wong’s Flute Level 2 class is fast approaching and I need to practice. You shall look at these pictures of tortoises while I practice my flute.

Here, look at this picture of a tortoise. Stare at it for a long time. While you are doing that, I will be in the next room perfecting my flute technique. I will be doing my warmup scales just as Mrs. Wong taught me back in Flute Level 1. I will be doing scales for half an hour and I need total silence, so be sure to fixate on this tortoise and don’t make a peep.

Here is another tortoise. Examine it and do not ask me for anything. I need total focus as I begin rehearsing my piece for my flute recital. I shall be performing the theme song from The Office on my flute. Mrs. Wong is counting on me to show everyone what a good teacher she is and I cannot be distracted.

The Office theme song is only 32 seconds long, but I must not underestimate its difficulty. Last year I played the 1-800-MATTRESS jingle for my Flute Level 1 recital and messed it up even though it is only six seconds long. Mrs. Wong didn’t speak to me for seven months after that. I must not let her down this year. Here is a another photograph of a tortoise to occupy your mind while I give myself over entirely to the study of the flute.

Let this image of a tortoise keep your mind busy while I am in the next room tooting away. The recital this year is being held in the children’s book section of the public library. Maurice Sendak once did a book signing there. It is a hallowed space. I cannot tarnish it with a poor rendition of the Office theme song. My wife will be there. My son and his live-in girlfriend will be there. Most importantly, Mrs. Wong will be there. I cannot fail in front of them. Meditate upon this tortoise and do not disturb me while I practice my flute.

This tortoise isn’t necessarily cute, but he is interesting. Certainly interesting enough to keep you busy for the six hours I need to rehearse for my flute recital. Please! You must understand! When I toot upon my flute, I want people to feel like they’re really about to watch an episode of The Office. I want my son’s live-in girlfriend to turn to him and say, “The power of your dad’s flute has transported me to Scranton, Pennsylvania, home of Michael Scott and Phyllis. You are so lucky to have a dad who has mastered Flute Level 2.” I want my wife to whisper, “I can see Jim and Pam!” And most of all, I want Mrs. Wong to close her eyes and exclaim, “I can smell Dwight Schrute because of this music!” Being able to play the Office theme song at such a high level is going to take hours of dedication, so do not ask me for anything for a long, long time. Just look at this tortoise and be satisfied.

This is the last tortoise picture in my collection. It’s going to have to keep you entertained for the rest of the day because I still have hours of flute practice left. It’s so important that you quietly contemplate this tortoise and leave me in peace! I need my recital to be perfect! When I’m done playing the Office theme song, I want my son and his live-in girlfriend to smile at me and maybe even give me a thumbs up. I want my wife to say, “You played the flute so well tonight that when we get home I’m going to give you a little kiss on the cheek.” And then…she does give me a little kiss on the cheek. And most of all, I want Mrs. Wong to tell me that she’s proud of me and maybe take a picture of me to hang up in her studio so that when other flute students come to her studio she can point at my picture and say, “This is my best student—my greatest success. When he plays the Office theme song, it feels like Michael Scott is in the room breathing on the back of your neck. Flute students like this one make me proud to be Mrs. Wong.” You must not screw this up for me. Stay silent and look at this tortoise. I must practice. I must achieve perfection. Mrs. Wong is counting on me.