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Fat Cats Grow Dizzy After Eating Berries
Andy Bustanoby
(C) May 21, 2005

     No, this isn't about my fat cat, Charlie (see 1-1, 1-29 &
     4-9-2005).  But if you know what this means, you know something
     about music, specifically, Western music notation.

     This memory aid is a way of recalling the order in which sharps
     appear in Western music--FCGDAEB.  And, of course, the flats can be
     remembered because you just read the letters backward.

     I love music.  In high school, I played the piano in a dance band
     and had dreams of going to Julliard School of Music.  But I
     discovered a problem. A dance band piano score doesn't require
     talent.  There's a big difference between loving music, and being
     a musician, particularly on the piano.  The dictionary defines a
     musician as, "A person who performs music, especially,
     professionally."  It defines a pianist as, "A person who plays the
     piano, especially one who performs expertly or professionally."

     You see, I know enough about music to really appreciate the timing,
     instrumentation and chord progression of a song.  But when it comes
     to making music, I don't have it, because I'm not a musician.  And I
     discovered that trying harder didn't make any difference.

     The reason for this came to light in my youth when I was given a
     battery of tests.  One thing they  found was that I don't have
     enough finger dexterity to play a piano professionally--like a real

     But more important was my lack of structural visualization, which
     indicated that I had difficulty reading at one glance the treble and
     bass cleft of piano music.  I really couldn't see the music as a
     gifted musician sees it.  And the more complex the piece of music,
     particularly in 6/8 time, between finger dexterity and structural
     visualization, my ability didn't place me in the category of

     I was a "wannabe" musician.  I wanted to be a musician, but I didn't
     see the music and finger the music as a born piano player.  Perhaps
     I could play something besides the piano.  But for me, that wasn't
     the same as making music.  I wanted to play the piano.

     The other day I was listening to Gershwin's Rhapsody In Blue on the
     piano, wishing I could play like that, when something popped into my
     mind.  The Apostle James, speaking to those exposed to Christianity
     and hearing the gospel message, said,  "Be ye doers of the word, and
     not hearers only, deceiving your own selves" (Jas. 1:22).

     I got to thinking.  I'm with music like a lot of people are with
     Christianity.  They know a lot about Christianity and enjoy a church
     with great music and great preaching.  They may even sing the
     wonderful hymn, Jesus Saves.  But has Christ made a difference in
     their lives through the experience of the new birth?  Or, are they
     wannabe Christians like Nicodemus?

     Jesus said to this very religious man, Nicodemus, a wannabe, "Except
     a man is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God" (Jn. 3:3).
     Doing the Christian life doesn't make you a Christian.  The doing
     comes after the new birth as evidence of what God has done in us.

     Though my youthful dream of being a musician didn't come to pass, at
     age seventeen I did receive a different gift when I was born again.
     It was the gift of a new life in Christ when someone told me, "God
     so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that
     whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting
     life" (Jn. 3:16).

     Born again by faith, I became more than a hearer, or a wannabe.  I
     became a doer because of the gift of the new birth.  This is a gift
     that can be yours.

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