A Parable

Once upon a time there was a citizen who showed up at the band rehearsal. “I’ve come to join,” the citizen announced to no one in particular. “I’m a musician.” “What sort of musician?” asked a band member who happened to be within earshot. “A horn player,” the citizen replied. “Great!” another band member said. “We can always use another horn player. We jam tonight, so come on along.”

So the citizen went to the jam session that evening. When he walked in the door, the leader greeted him warmly and suggested he play a particular melody on his horn. The citizen said, “Oh, I don’t have a horn.” “But we thought you said you were a horn player.” “I am; I just don’t have a horn.” At this point it was unclear to what extent the citizen was, in fact, a horn player.

Is the citizen in our story a horn player? Does he now (or at any time previously, did he) own his own horn? Perhaps the horn is in need of repair. If the citizen did indeed have a horn at one time, was he able to make music with it? Could it be that he is just a musician in his own mind, and that he simply likes the idea of being a musician?

Can you discern any parallels to a citizen enrolled in a photography course?

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