Whether he meant to swallow the harmonica is debatable. He was probably just trying to play it. But we waited because if his plan was to have his voice transformed into bursts of musical chords, then we wanted to pay him the respect he deserved as a performer.
In the end, he settled for beating on his chest a few times before coughing up a moderate amount of blood. It wasn’t the best performance in the world, but it certainly wasn’t the worst performance, either. That award would go to my wife, Diane.
And when the elevator got as close to empty as I thought it was going to get, I addressed her reflection in the mirror. “You’re mad about something, baby! But if you think I’m going to waste this entire 7-day, desert harmonica festival trying to guess what it is, then you better think again!”