I grew up in a piano-playing household. Primarily due to the fact that my mother is a piano teacher and my brother and I were always surrounded by a piano, sheet music and pupils who struggled to play their scales. Each year we would be bombarded with differing renditions of ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town’ and ‘Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer’, all played at different speeds, some in a stop-start jingle and some with so many wrong notes, I’d sit in my bedroom thinking ‘Is that Rudolf they’re trying to play or some unknown Christmas tune I’m about to be introduced to…Nope, no, it’s Rudolf.’
There was one memorable year when I returned home to visit during exam time and all the students seemed to be studying ‘My Bonnie Lies Over The Ocean’…I still can’t listen to that song without shuddering. Hours after hours of listening to kids play it over and over again. I feel like I could play it through sheer osmosis.
My mother taught us how to read sheet music as children. I learned the right hand and some of the left and mastered most of the nursery rhymes before I quit. My brother, however, went on to absorb music as an exponential rate. He could read a piece, play it, read it, play it, have it memorised. Whenever I would return to Ireland to visit, he would play me the most recent pieces he learned plus some oldies I liked too. He moved onto a ragtime phase where a favorites of mine came to include almost anything by Scott Joplin. He doesn’t play much anymore, preferring to focus on art and woodwork but I have never, in all my life, never ever wanted to force him to learn a piece and play it via Skype to me so badly:
IT. IS. MARIO.
I mean seriously!
MARIO SHEET MUSIC!
For those of you who have never heard the Mario theme tune, (honestly, I’m surprise you know what the Internet is, but anyway), here it is:
My obsession with Mario dates back to my owning a N64 and every Mario game (and yes, Goldeneye) that was released. Now, we own a WII and the obsession continues with Mario Kart. This month at work we’re even having a Mario-themed staff incentive program running…no, seriously. I spent an entire day cutting out those tiny Mario flowers, Bowser, bananas (I hate them) and shells. Lest we forgot, I still work at a bank.
Mario has dotted my life in random unexpected places here and there as an adult. I once found myself dancing to a disco version of the song at a basement nightclub in Seoul with The Canadian One. My friend and I once stayed at a hostel in South Korea and one of the girls sharing our room had gone out for the night, while my friend and I stayed in. The girl’s phone kept alerting her to a text every so often with a ring that reminded us of ‘It’s a Mario!’…We spent the rest of the trip saying ‘It’s a Mario!’ over and over again each time her phone went off. We were beyond annoying. Now and then, I’d find myself humming the Mario theme tune at work, much to the amusement of my 10 year students who would break into song with me occasionally, surprised I, a 26-year-old teacher, would know who Mario is.
I mean, please, I know no one (NO ONE) my age who does not know who Mario is. NO ONE.
NOW, all I gotta do is find someone who can play the piano, is almost my age and who I can convince to learn to play this piece for me…
I’m gonna go call my brother!