Mr. Dickhudt’s 10th Grade Class
…One day I went to church by myself on a Sunday. It was freezing; I was only wearing a hooded sweater, sweats, and some run down boots that belonged to my father. I had gone in and despite the unbearable weather it was quite abundant with people. I had sat down in the left corner. The pastor (which was a friend of my mother’s) came and gave me a hug. “Why are there so many people here?” I had asked. “Do people need a reason to come to the house of god other than to express their gratitude and fortify themselves spiritually as well as mentally.” He responded. He had a humble appearance; he was a bald, light skinned, chubby man. I had actually come to like him a lot throughout the years then again I’d accept anyone who proved to be a better father figure than mine. “So they’re here for a typical church day?” I said. “Well, they’re devoted to serving god but if you want another reason I assume it’s because we invited a pretty good preacher and musician.” He replied. “Who?” I asked. “Evangelist and percussionist Jacob Alexander Cruz.” As the pastor left to take his seat at the altar, my curiosity slowly began to flourish. After maybe twenty minutes I decided to check what all the hype was about. I slowly made my way to the front of the temple. There at the right, just before the altar there was a drum set. It was a Pearl drum set, an intricate black and gold design. Four copper gold-plated cymbals, one black snare with gold rims, two gold toms with black rims and the floor tom and bass following the same design as the snare drum. They were in the middle of a song. His hands were like manifested lightning. He played a very elaborate beat; it had grace.
As soon as church had ended and he was alone I introduced myself to him. “God bless you, I’m Devon Rodriguez.” He looked at me and gave me an amp and asked me to help him. I reluctantly said yes, as this was not at all where I wanted to go with the conversation. He had a stern face and a suit that started a light gray and turned dark gray due to all the sweat. (I’ll never know why, but in church he always played with a suit) After loading up all the amps, He introduced himself, “My name is Jacob. I’ve been playing drums for around 15 years and my current age is something that you’ll never know.” He’d invited me to his house. Suddenly this guy didn’t have a stern face anymore, his whole demeanor had changed, and as he definitely was not the person I saw playing the drum set in church. He now looked spontaneous and fun. I’d soon find out that I had said yes without thinking and that was the start of a very short-lived yet unforgettable relationship between student and mentor…
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