Monday, November 24, 2008

The Harwich Who Dunnit

Imagine you are strolling along a wooded path in a nature preserve. Birds are flitting and chittering among the winter denuded branches of the trees and anonymous little critters scurry about their business, hidden in the brush and drifts of leaves. Everything is peaceful and, above all, normal.

Until you come to the end of the trail. Suddenly things are not so normal at all. There before you stands a lovely, obviously well-maintained upright piano and its accompanying bench, cover lifted, keys shining in the winter sunlight, ready for someone to sit down and begin to play.

The piano isn't making a sound but you could swear you hear the theme music from Twilight Zone. You anxiously look all around you. Are you really alone? Did the phantom pianist just step behind a nearby tree to retrieve some sheet music? Who is this phantom pianist, anyway? And if he -- or she -- is resorting to concerts in the woods, is there something terribly wrong with him -- or her? Or maybe it's just that the poor pianist can't practice at home because the neighbors keep calling the cops?

Okay, I'm indulging in blatant speculation here, I admit it, but I'm far from the only one. Since its discovery Saturday, the Baldwin in the above photo has become probably the most famous piano in the country. As of this writing, nobody knows where it came from or how it got to its spot in the woods near Harwich, Massachusetts. All they know is it took several cops to load it into a truck to bring it in to the police station so it must have taken several folks to get it out there in the boonies in the first place.

Given all the publicity and general hoorah, why hasn't anyone come forward to claim it? Perhaps the owner is away on a trip and has no idea the piano has gone walkabout. I'm thinking the cops could backtrack by way of the serial number, from manufacturer, to storefront, to buyer. Oops, wait a minute. I just thought of something. Maybe the owner was behind in payments and the piano was about to be repossessed and maybe he figured he'd make 'em work for it. Nah. Scratch that idea. That's just mean. I prefer a more whimsical explanation for the mystery.

Or maybe even no explanation at all -- because, like magician's tricks, some mysteries are a lot more fun if you don't know how it's done.

By the way, has anyone heard from the Phantom of the Opera lately?


bonnie said...

Am I the only one who didn't hear this story? Didn't even see it on TV. How did you learn of it?

Thanks for telling me the difference on the cactus. I was too lazy to look it up yesterday. Well OK I forgot too. :-)

Maggie said...

I didn't hear or read about this either. Perhaps its on the level with kids putting cars in dorm rooms or some other such things. Delightful. I wonder if the cops play?

Dee said...

I saw it at the MSNBC web site and then Googled "Harwich mystery piano" from there. There's even a video on YouTube of the piano at the cop shop with the reporter tapping out a few notes on the keyboard. Yes, I'm wondering if there's a college nearby because that's just the sort of prank kids can talk themselves into. Wonder if we'll ever find out?