Brooke has always collected salt and pepper shakers. One of the sets sitting in the kitchen window is the dog and gramophone from the RCA Victor record label.

Salt and Pepper Shakers shaped like the RCA Victor dog and gramophone

The Victor trademark, “His Master’s Voice” is now owned by HMV Retail, Ltd. I’m not sure where the salt and pepper shakers came from, or if they qualify as “official” merchandise. All I know is they sit on our kitchen window in a perpetual conversation.

“You’re nothing but an empty ornament. There’s no real pepper in there. I can see right through those holes. There’s nothing in there.”

“Of course there’s nothing in there. How do you think there’d be any space for the sound to properly reverberate if I were all jammed up with pepper? Not that you ever really listen.”

“I’d listen if you had anything worth saying all these years.”

“Sure, you look like you’re listening. It’s nothing but a pose for you, is it? That’s all anything is to you, a pose.”

“It’s not a pose! I’ve been listening for my master’s voice for years. Why I should expect to hear it from you is beyond me.”

“Poser! What do you know about voice? The most you’re capable of is yowling.”

“It’s not yowling. It’s singing.”

“Singing. Bah! I’ve been singing to you all these years. I’ve played everything for you. I’ve played the Ode to Joy. I’ve played Mozart. I’ve played Elvis, Harry Belafonte and Jefferson Airplane. Anything RCA ever released. Don’t tell me about your singing. I know singing. That incessant baying is not singing.”

“Don’t give yourself so much credit. You’re nothing but a copycat. You’ve got nothing original. Whatever comes on the vinyl disks is all you’ve got. I’ve got real emotion! When I sing, it’s not someone else’s material. It’s what I’m feeling, deep down.”

“Deep down. What deep down? You know you’ve got nothing. You’re just an empty ceramic shell. Nothing but an empty ornament. There’s no real salt in there.”