Saturday, June 9, 2012


I am in the library.
I wonder how
Street Musician Daniel (NYC)
did last night...
It is Saturday morning.
I slept until about 8:57 a.m. which was 3 minutes before the next LA Swift bus to New Orleans was scheduled to leave. I guess I needed the rest.
Last night, I started with the 6 cents in my case at 9:30 p.m.
By 10 p.m., I had only 6 cents still, and the crowd of people, all similarly attired, and all seemingly of the same mindset, were pissing me off. Not because they weren't tipping me, because I had made up my mind that, if I didn't make a dime, I would just walk back to Scotlandville, but because of a series of a type of person that I need a snigglet for, which walked past almost exclusively during that half hour, when I put a pretty good amount of energy into playing, while feeling the gap between myself and New Orleans widen.
Let's call them the "mockers," for now. They are simply the ones who yell the exaggerated, "You rock!" or words to that effect, when you are either A: doing some song like a John Denver song, which doesn't actually "rock" and isn't really intended to, and even people at John Denver concerts didn't cheer him like you would Ted Nugent (hence, the sarcasm) or B: They yell it in a noisy environment from a distance at which they wouldn't be able to tell even if you *were* "rocking" on your acoustic guitar, hence the sarcasm.
There was also a guy, early twenties, sky blue button up shirt, khaki pants, leather loafers, reddish hair close cropped, almost a crew cut, who said "It's all about you, man. Right now, it's all about you!" which I didn't understand, but by that time I assumed it to be more sarcasm.
I was getting pissed off, more by the attitudes, and I was also totally sober and had been for the past 24 hours, which was a factor, plus, my trip to New Orleans was dependent upon the outcome of the night and I was feeling the pressure.
I started to feel myself on the verge of breaking into my "you people all suck, I hate your guts" catalog of music when a young lady with blond hair, skinny and wearing a salmon colored silk type shirt came over and put something in my case.
"Thank you, I thought nobody was going to give me anything."
There is definitely an "ice breaking" effect to the first tip.
It's like going to a party and the hosts say "We're glad you could show up," and you know that they aren't speaking for everyone at the party, just themselves, but it makes you feel like you can at least claim to belong there, even if only on their account...
As I played, I noticed that there was more than a dollar tucked against the wind in the corner of the case.
That kind of spurred me to play better, or at least more energetically, which, after another fifteen minutes, produced nothing more; and the anger started coming back, so I decided to knock off and get a beer.
The one tip from the girl in the salmon shirt turned out to be 6 ones, folded together. As I was picking up my backpack, I found a tightly crumbled 5 dollar bill laying on the marble near it (probably thrown from a car and one of the things that I might miss, without my glasses).
So, at least one of the things yelled out of a car window must have been more like "Here you go" as the bill landed out of my notice, than something sarcastic. I guess by that point, and it was midnight, everything was sounding like "You suck!"
The hot dog cart guy, who had been a prophet of doom, watched my bag and guitar, allowing me to half walk, half jog to the store for what would be my only beer of the night.
Dancing Days
Returning, I set up at about 1 a.m. and played for about an hour and a half.
The one beer was enough to elevate my mood, yet not impair my playing and I was able to play satisfactorily, and I started to feel like a heel when these same people started putting tips in my case, whom I was composing the "I hate your guts" song for earlier that evening. I was getting a lot of ones and two fives, one of them was laid on my backpack, away from my notice.
I did "Dancing Days," and "Light My Fire," the song by The Doors, notably.
The wind was still a bit gusty, and at one point a girl said "Hey, your twenty blew out of your case," walked behind me and retrieved just that from about 10 feet away. An honest girl who probably had more than 6 cents on her.
All in all I made about $52.
$17 more than I had two weeks earlier in New Orleans after starting my case with 6 cents.
I took one of the five dollar bills and separated it out, dubbing it my "am going to see Sue" bill.
Baton Rouge vs. Bourbon
Now, as I prepare for the next LA Swift bus to New Orleans at 12:45, I look forward to putting a Bourbon Street Saturday night in one corner, and the Baton Rouge downtown Friday night that I just had in another corner, and letting them duke it out.
I might think that the Saturday night in Bourbon would have the advantage because I will be starting with a better attitude (less financial necessity for a distraction) and more than 6 cents in my case; but; I *probably* won't be as sober by midnight, when the action starts...

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