[Warning: This post is bitchy and judgmental. I'm sorry about that. I clearly have strong opinions about this issue that you may not agree with. If I offend you about your instrument choice in middle school band, I sincerely apologize.]
Usually around the third date we ask our guy about what activities he participated in during his adolescence. If he admits to playing in his middle school band, then we can deduce a lot of information based on which instrument he chose.
As a former clarinet player, I can say with some authority that all the hot guys in band played drums, saxophone, guitar and trombone. The middle tier were the string section, trumpet players, tuba players, french horners, and the other clarinet players. At the very bottom of the band totem pole were the boy flute players. If a guy admits that he used to play the flute, well, let's just say that it would've been better if he admitted that he attended clown college.
Well, my guy admitted to playing the flute. My face couldn't hide my disappointment. I immediately thought of us as an eighth grade couple; him carting around his little purse-like black flute case and me dying my hair black, devouring issues of Spin magazine on my beanbag chair, and flipping an L7 cassette in my boombox. I hate us as an eighth grade couple. It never would've worked!
Now, every time we kiss, I think about his pre-pubescent pinky stiff in the air, dexterously maneuvering over the airholes as he huffed away on his warm-up scales. Consequently, I will never be able to take him seriously. After we break up, when I get upset that he has a new girlfriend, I'll just remind myself of his flutist ways and cackle. Could he have picked a less masculine instrument? Maybe a triangle, but that is more jokey. At least it's not a piccolo, or God forbid, a harp.
He will be known in my circle as "the Flutist." We will whisper it through the caverns of KFN: "Yo, I saw the Flutist at the Barbary last night. He was looking banged up." We'll scrawl it on the bathroom wall of the P.O.P.E. "Beware the Flutist! He's a dick." He will never live this label down, even if he wins the Nobel Peace Prize. I don't care that he has advanced college degrees, cool sneakers, a rad cat, and an appreciation for aged whiskeys, he will always be the awkward middle school flute player to me.