02 03 Nerd Lunch: Music Nerd: The dreaded lute-guitar 04 05 15 16 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 31 32 33

Music Nerd: The dreaded lute-guitar

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About twelve years ago, I was heading towards a very dim future: a graduate degree in English medieval literature. Fortunately, as a senior writing my honors thesis on Dante's Divine Comedy, I had an epiphany: I don't like being useless, and simply talking about chivalry and honor and other noble concepts was starting to feel pretty useless. So I shifted gears and went to law school instead, and now I get to be the good guy once in a while, and at other times, sort of an honorable and competent bad guy.

But I digress.

This here is a lute-guitar. It's daddy was a lute, and it's mama was a guitar. Nylon strings and a wide, flat neck (like a classical guitar), and the body of a bowl-back lute (probably more of a Renaissance-era design than medieval, technically). As soon as I saw this, I knew that in a parallel universe, there is another me with a Ph.D. in medieval studies, $100K in student loans, a full beard, a non-tenure track position at a community college, clinical depression, and one of these babies hanging on the wall of my tiny apartment.

Oh, don't be mad, lute-guitar. You are beautiful. And it would be a lot of fun to get together with a bunch of like-minded individuals and wear tights and funny hats (like I did in madrigals back in high school) and do a lot of songs with the lyrics "Hey, Nonny, Nonny." To mix it up from time to time, we could dress up like elves and play gaming conventions and do songs about hobbits and such. It's two bands in one, really.

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