Japan's 1930s war tubas. Click image to enlarge.
_I've been mesmerized lately by a peculiar phenomenon that's been plaguing Los Angeles: Tuba thefts.
For what? Steal 'em for spare parts like a Cadillac Escalade? Hold 'em for ransom? Maybe even make music on 'em?
It appears that something called "banda," a type of polka-style brass band music from Mexico might have something to do with it.
Look at an example of banda music on YouTube.
According to a Los Angeles Times article, an abnormal amount of these sometimes mind-numbingly expensive instruments (worth as much as $5000 each) have been the removed from local schools during after-hours breakins.
Stolen by whom? Aspiring banda bandits, one might assume. I can imagine, if this theft trend continues, that in a matter of months one could assume that if he saw two banda groups in a given period of time, one of them would be serenading you with a stolen Los Angeles School District tuba.
But why would someone want to be in a banda group in the first place?
To pick up chicks, of course. What draws women like a tuba? (I once saw a didgeridoo player fail to pick up two girls on the 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica. He failed because he wasn't playing a tuba.)
Curiously... on the other side of the world, a similar brass music phenomenon (minus the tuba thefts) has been sighted. It's in a town called Gucha in Serbia where, every year, the Gucha brass band festival and competition is held.
What's a Gucha band sound like? It sounds like a banda band. Click to listen.
(Hey, that tuba looks familiar.)