I had purchased a talking metronome while I was attending a conference in New York for music teachers. Before my son and I boarded our flight home, I hefted my carry-on bag onto the security-check conveyor belt.
The guard’s eyes widened as he watched the monitor. He asked what I had in the bag, then slowly pulled out the six-by-three-inch black box covered with dials and switches. Other travelers, sensing trouble, vacated the area.
“A metronome,” I replied weakly, as my son cringed in embarrassment. “It’s a talking metronome,” I insisted. “Look, I’ll show you.” I took the box and flipped a switch, realizing that I had no idea how it worked, “One… two… three… four,” it said. Everyone breathed a sigh of relief.
As we gathered our belongings, my son whispered, “Aren’t you glad it didn’t go ‘four… three… two… one…’?”