Call The Ambulance – I Can’t Whistle

By W.R. Jones

    Last night I was lying in bed reading a book, The $64 Tomato, about a gardner when a spontaneous happy moment hit me.  Or, perhaps it was just a ripple in my brain wave.  I broke out in a whistle – attempt.  The sound that came out of my mouth was a light whooshing like the air coming out of my bike tire that time I rode to Carpenteria in the 100+ degree sun and ended up laying on the floor of a grocery next to the frozen foods telling someone to call my wife to come get me.

    What happened?  When did I lose the ability to whistle?  Is this the final stage of some terrible disease?  As you might guess, my moment of joy was short lived.  I squeezed my lips into the perfect whistle shape and blew again.  I sounded like a large snake.  Sitting bolt upright in shock, I blew again and again while moving my lips seeking the whistle shape.  My wife was not even polite enough to contain her laughter.

    As a nearly world famous self diagnosing hypochondriac, I think I’ve got slack lip.  The tone is gone.  When I go to the gym today I will ask if they have small lip barbells.  I suppose you have to work the bottom lip standing up and the upper lip standing on your head.  Otherwise the barbell is going to roll off.  I guess you could partially balance it with the tip of the tongue, but I’m not sure if that is good form.  They are always on about FORM at the gym.

    I can’t remember if I could whistle after I left the service.  I should have tested it then.  Maybe there is a Veterans Lip Rehab center somewhere. 

    I also can’t remember learning to whistle.  Is it learned?  Maybe grandpa took me outside, “Ok, Billy, today we learn to whistle at the girls.”  “Why would we want to do that, grandpa?”  “Shut up you little fruit and do as I say.”  Grandfather was an upholsterer by trade and used to have a mouth full of tacks when he worked.  If that is what it takes to learn to whistle I think I will just hum to the passing ladies.

    I’ve got to call my lawyer; someone must be to blame for this tragic loss.


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7 Responses to Call The Ambulance – I Can’t Whistle

  1. gypsy-heart says:

    What a charming piece!

    I never have been able to whistle. I always did the blade of grass trick. You can always do that. :)

  2. I am soooo glad that I regularly read your blog! Stand on your head so the tiny little itsy bitsy barbell on your upper lip won’t fall off while you’re pressing ten. Thank you!!!!!! I’m fixin to head on out this Friday to paint en plein air…and…whistle!

  3. Erika says:

    you definitely were able to whistle during my highschool years. I remember those annoying tunes you would whistle conveniently 5 minutes before my alarm would go off. Pure torture!! On a side note… as a future health professional I recommend you get your cranial nerve VII checked out, it might be the beginning stages of Bells Palsy.

    (from one hypochondriac to another)

  4. kevmoore says:

    “you know how to whistle, don’t you Bill? – you just put your lips together and blow…” Lauren Bacall’s advice aside, perhaps the answer lies in botox injections.
    then again , maybe the problem is that you CANT put your lips together anymore. if this is the case, check to see if there’s a large piece of fruit nestling there that you perhaps missed last time you brushed. I usually find this does the trick. Only last year, I found myself struck dumb for several weeks. After a brief inspection in a nearby mirror, I located a disused porterhouse steak and a side of fries, which I disposed of forthwith. Thereafter i was able to whistle “sabre dance” by Katchaturian with additional harmony violins.

  5. wrjones says:

    Gypsy – I’m learning to whistle in case you blog by. However, if you hear a hum, that could be me.

    David – I think I overdid the workout. I’ve now got a 6 pack on my upper lip. I’m looking for some lip speedos to wear on the beach.

    Erika – I have been feeling my head looking for that nerve. If I put ice on it I may be able to slow the disease.

    Kev – good suggestion. I found a couple of leftover ribs from a rack of lamb. I need to pay more attention to my flossing.

  6. I’ve always wished I could do that really loud whistle where you use the ends of your thumb and forefinger on your lips. It would’ve come in handy for calling the kids when they were young and playing outside somewhere out of sight.

    But they’re grown now and I still don’t know how to do that.

    Hey you could take up trumpet playing to get your chops in shape. Maybe that would work for whistling too.

  7. wrjones says:

    Diana – that type of whistle is not lady like at all. I really can’t understand why you would want to whistle to get the kids to come home anyway. Isn’t the object to get rid of them? We were able to place most of ours with fairly good families (as trailer park families go).

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