THE OBSESSING CORNET

In spite of my resolutions to dismiss from mind all ideas of ever being able to buy a cornet until I was much older, nevertheless the yearning to own one was ever present and would not be dismissed; I wanted to own my cornet, and so have an instrument which could be used whenever I pleased without having to ask permission from someone every time I desired to practice. With only the small amount of money I thus far had saved, however, the prospect of purchasing my own cornet was indeed remote. Nevertheless constantly pondered over it and tried to reason out someway by which I might obtain my individual cornet, and at length a happy idea popped into my mind. Knowing that the Government supplied instruments to such members of its Regimental Band that did not own them, and also knowing that if only a little older I possibly could enlist and be supplied with an instrument, I determined to try and break into that band.

Having marched many a mile alongside this band when it was on parade and drills I had no doubt as to my physical endurance, and being of good height and well but for a boy of my age, I knew that I could wear the uniform acceptably; therefore, if I could convince the officers of the regiment that I was not underage limit, there perhaps might be chance for me to make the band goal. The more I thought it over the bolder I became, but how was I to get enough influence with the bandmaster, who was not only a fie musician, but a first-class drillmaster, for him to consider a boy? I dared not ask my older brothers for assistance, as I was only the "kid brother" who so often was told that "you play rotten". I also knew that my father would object so it was out of the question to confide in anyone. I could not get the idea out of my mind that the thing might be accomplished if I went about it the right way, and at length I hit upon a possible course to pursue. The more I thought about it, the more feasible my plan semed to become, so one night I mustered sufficient courage to try it out.