The Title For This Would Sound Just Too Wrong

I made my guitar teacher’s nose bleed. I made that happen. He hadn’t even done anything wrong.


I’m not a heartless bastard who strikes out at talented musicians, even if I am a little bit jealous of their exceptional playing ability. Besides, the hands would be the ideal target, not that I’ve ever thought about it.


No this blood flow did not stem from some nasty outburst. This happened because of Love. Yes, my love drew blood from his nose. What? I hear you scream! Is that how you pay for your tuition!? No it’s not and besides, I’m a tender and considerate lover.


So the title for this post would accurately be, “When Love Draws Blood,” but it’s just wrong on so many levels. I would’t be surprised if you scrunched your face up a little bit reading that. But please allow me to explain.


Ten years I’ve been playing guitar. Mostly self-taught but you know when you hit a brick wall? I don’t mean metaphorically either. Literally, with a guitar, out of frustration because your playing and development has metaphorically hit a brick wall.


Well that happened to me. It was time to find a guitar tutor.


Years ago on the open mic and gigging circuit of Birmingham, my paths crossed with a very talented singer songwriter called Mark. He went on to start teaching guitar full time and he was the man who would turn me into a bald, bespectacled, hatless, non smoker, Slash! So almost a carbon copy.


I’ve had a handful of lessons and I can honestly say, my playing and understanding of the instrument as well as musical theory have all developed. I’m very happy with the results and can’t recommend his lessons enough to people. Only the other day I screamed at an old lady as I drove past, “You should be having guitar lessons with Mark Bennett!” As I watched in my rear view mirror, I could tell that she was seriously considering it whilst wriggling around on the pavement.


Now one day, Mark was doing some DIY in a garage he’s building, when he had an accident with a mirror. It fell on him and smashed. He was okay although he did have a cut on his face that required stitches.


No that is not how my love drew blood. I wasn’t standing behind the mirror whispering, “I love you,” before giving it a little push. I am not telekinetic either.


I was taking a shite at work, getting paid for it and relishing it. It was a very 21st century poop because I was simultaneously texting Mrs Grump and in between texts following social media on Facebook. Yes, men CAN multi-task! In your face women!


So I text a reply to Mrs Grump, went back to Facebook and came across a post by Mark explaining that he had had an accident, he was okay but asking pupils to excuse the stitched up wound on his face.


I thought I would try to comment something humorous. So I wrote a comment underneath explaining that the ladies love a facial scar. I then returned to text Mrs Grump another reply and shortly after, I wiped.


Later in the day on the way home, I checked Facebook again and saw that Mark had replied to my comment underneath. “Things are looking up! Got to be careful what I say here ; ) ha ha. I’ll let you know.”


I was horrified.


Why? Because above his response, I saw my original comment. “Sorry to hear that Mark. The ladies love a scar apparently.” Doesn’t seem bad does it? But what if I told you that I had followed it with a couple of kisses?


Two little x’s. What an impression those two little x’s can create. I had been caught up in the cross wires of messaging Mark and texting Mrs Grump and in the midst and slightly smelly madness, on auto pilot, I had added a couple of kisses to the message and then committed them to the virtual yet still very real world of Facebook.


I guess I must count my blessings. It could have been confusion the other way and I could have text Mrs Grump with condolences about a nasty gash. I can assure you that I would not be physically able to type this today if I had.


I had nonetheless displayed an affection towards my guitar tutor. It said to others who looked at his page and anyone else in my network of friends that happened to see that I had commented, that I REALLY like my guitar lessons. I also appeared to love my guitar teacher. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a very nice bloke, makes a great cup of tea and plays guitar like a demon but he’s no Mrs Grump. Other students would have looked at that comment and thought, oh, that’s nice, Mark isn’t homophobic! I don’t think he is but I didn’t want to be the rainbow wearing demonstration of Mark’s openness to all students of any sexual orientation.


I could probably make a joke here about an open G-string, but I won’t.


He had replied to me. He had seen it and I also couldn’t then delete the comment. What would that say? Mark would think, ‘Why has he removed the comment? Does he no longer want to wish me his condolences?’ Then he might feel awkward thinking that he might have offended me some way.


Then there’s also the fact that if I had removed the comment, to the public, Mark would look to anyone else like he had just randomly commented on his own post in a fashion that makes no sense whatsoever. I don’t want Mark to seem mentally unstable. It could put off any potential future pupils. I will not be responsible for damaging the man’s livelihood.


Also if I remove it, or even if I could edit it, could the removal of the kisses upset Mark? I don’t want to upset him. Perhaps the kisses lifted him during the no doubt uncomfortable time he was enduring with his facial stiches.


I know, I think about things way too much.


I had no option but to leave the kisses where they were.


I felt I had to tackle this head on. So I was going to broach this subject at the next lesson.


My next guitar lesson was during the day. Mark was sure enough stitched up but in good spirits. The scar was across his cheek and part of his nose and it had been very deep. Whilst I tuned my guitar, Mark went off to make another great cup of tea.


I raised this subject and had to break it to him that the kisses had been a mistake and I was very embarrassed by it. It was as if I was trying to break up with him and to tell him that I just didn’t feel that way. How would he take it? I don’t want to break this married man and father’s heart.


He said he hadn’t even noticed but he found the predicament and all the above so amusing that he laughed out loud which snagged his stitches and caused his nose to bleed.


I’m glad we cleared the air. I felt better, enjoyed my tea, had a great lesson and was no doubt easily a demon on guitar. A demon with little coordination, timing or dexterity.


Here’s Mark’s website:



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