I first became interested in the piano in college. I think it was after seeing the movie Five Easy Pieces. Jack Nicholson played the Chopin Prelude in E Minor and I just had to learn it. I didn't have a piano, but I could use the practice rooms at school. It took me six months to learn it! I never developed into a very good pianist, but my love for the piano kept growing.
In 1992 I visited Steinway Hall for the first time. I was a 23-year-old kid with no money. They could've told me to get lost, but the gentleman I talked to there was happy to answer my questions and let me look around. He even let me see the famous Steinway basement when I asked about it. I wish I could remember his name.
When I decided to buy a piano in 2004 naturally I went back to Steinway Hall. It really made no sense for someone at my level of pianistic ability to buy a Steinway, but sometimes things just happen. I bought Steinway's smallest grand, a model S, at Steinway Hall. It lives with my wife and me in our tiny apartment, and it's like a member of the family. We even ditched our old bed for a bed that folds into the wall to make room for the piano.
For years I'd had the idea in the back of my mind to become a piano technician, but I knew how steep the learning curve was and felt intimidated. Finally, two years ago, I decided to do it and dove in. It's been great so far. I think I've found my calling. But now that I know more about pianos I wish I'd bought the larger model O or L!