Book Review: Beginning Clarinet for the Moderately Intelligent

Ryan Rocifero And His Clarinet

We didn’t know that Ryan Rocifero was interested in the clarinet until we heard squeals as of pigs being cruelly tortured issuing from the basement of our building. Rushing down the stairs, we found him—Ryan Rocifero, that is—using (or attempting to use) a book called Beginning Clarinet for the Moderately Intelligent.

We asked him why he thought he was qualified to read a book that demanded intelligence. He replied that he had first attempted to learn clarinet with the aid of a book called Beginning Clarinet for the Complete and Total Moron, but decided that he was ready for something written at a higher level.

Musikinstrumente

In order to prove his point, he cited the following sample:

The clarinet is a musical instrument. It can make nice sounds, but you need to learn how to play it well. Before starting to learn, you should follow these important rules:

  • Do not stuff doughnuts into your clarinet.
  • Do not stuff cheese into your clarinet.
  • Do not burn your clarinet.
  • Do not use your clarinet as a weapon.
  • Do not put your clarinet in the toilet.
  • Never attempt to say the word “clarinet.” It is too hard for you, and may cause (further) brain damage.

However, despite his protests, we weren’t entirely convinced that he was ready for Beginning Clarinet for the Moderately Intelligent.

Was Ryan Rocifero right, or should he have stuck with Beginning Clarinet for the Complete and Total Moron?

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“Clarinet,” by 写真好き少年 (写真好き少年による撮影). Public domain via Wikimedia Commons. Cropped.
“QuartertoneClarinet,” by By Frank Fickelscherer-Faßl (de:image:VierteltonMMM.jpg). CC-BY-SA-3.0 via Wikimedia Commons. Detail.


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