Dear Recorder,

We talked about this. I thought I made myself perfectly clear the last time you came home with one of my kids. You are not welcome here. I am busy with real life, working full time and schlepping my three kids to sporting events in which they are mediocre at best. I don’t have time for your bullshit.

The only thing worse than listening to my child attempt to play you would be listening to fifty children play you. You know that happened once on a subway in New York City. I would have thrown myself in front of the train just for a moment of goddamn peace and quiet. Which brings me to my point.

You are nothing less than an auditory hijacking. I recognize playing an instrument is a national standard guideline taught in elementary schools. They choose you because you are cheap and easy. You are cheap, easy, and incapable of producing one pleasing note. You serve no purpose. You are like a white crayon.

You are not teaching my son about music. If schools wanted to teach children about music they would play them Tapestry over and over. They would read Rachael Yamagata lyrics to help them navigate their future divorce. They would have their hopeful musicians watch videos of Freddy Mercury on stage and explain this is what it looks like to feel passion for something. No one feels passion for you. You are a child’s instrument, like a rectal thermometer.

I truly believe the school board joined forces with a rogue member of Oasis to create some sort of government conspiracy. How else do you explain generation after generation being subjected to your commotion? We have sacrificed livers full of mid-week Pinot trying to drown out the distress you generate.

If the sound emerging from your blowholes weren’t bad enough, I also take issue with your color. You are flesh toned. It looks like my son is manhandling a thin penis. It’s unnerving. How am I supposed to concentrate on anything while he is wheezing into you, red-faced and spit-flying? How do you expect me to make a nutritious meal for my family when all I can picture is rubbing my every inch of my skin off with a Bic eraser if he plays “Hot Cross Buns” one more fucking time? Every dog in our neighborhood is on our front lawn. Do you think this is a coincidence? No. No, it’s not a coincidence.

Most parents are just hanging on by a thread, do you understand me? WE ARE BARELY HANGING ON.

I tried to break you in half last night when everyone was sleeping. You are stronger than you look. I slumped to the floor, sweating and defeated. You just looked at me with your stupid face, mocking me. You aren’t the flute, you know. You are shit.

This isn’t over, my friend. Not by a long shot.