My Most Memorable Guitar Students – Flip's Dad

Years ago when I first started teaching guitar, the piano instructor said something that stuck with me. “You only remember the really good students, and the really bad students.” I was surprised to discover she was right. I've taught hundreds, if not thousands of people over the years. Here is one of the most absurd students I've ever had.

Flip's Dad – The MLM Salesman

So this story isn't about the actual student, but rather the student's father. Truth be told Flip , which wasn't his real name but his mother and father insisted I call him that, was a good student. This is about his father, Gary. Gary was into MLM. Gary looked like a cheap 1980's businessman. Bald on top with the classic comb over. Skinny arms, legs, and chest, but massive beer gut. Which reminds me, he had prevalent gin blossoms on his cheeks. To top it off, he wore an old suit coat with leather patches on his elbows. On said sports coat, was a giant button with the words, “ LOSE WEIGHT ASK ME HOW!”

I was surprised on how many results came back when I searched this.

Now to be clear, I never judge what somebody does for a living. It's hard out there. I do get annoyed when someone's job is to try and sell me something after I've repeatedly declined. The kicker of it was he was selling diet plans, shakes, and work out routines. I've never been in sales but I'm pretty sure one of the rules is, Sell what you know, and Gary clearly knew nothing about being healthy. He also used sale tactics that a blind person could see on a dark night. He'd typically attempt a sales pitch after his son's lesson as I 'd be going over what we worked on in the lesson:

Me: So, we're still working on the penatonic scale, if he gets that down we can really take off on the types of music we could play.

Gary: Yeah, yeah that's great. So... Let me ask you something. Do you want to lose weight and live a healthier lifestyle?

Me: Uh...So anyway Flip has five inversions he needs to learn before...

Gary: Cause with my three point method you can be sportin' a beach bod in no time! And, once you learn how it's done you can bring others into this healthier lifestyle as well.

Me: ...

Every week became a dance that him and I would engage in where he would rehash the same sales pitch and I would polity decline his services. I started scheduling my next student earlier so I would have less time to converse with Gary. He countered this by asking for my home phone number which I replied that was against store policy.

But...he got me!

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