Thursday, November 19, 2015

It's For My Cat!!

24 Dollar Wednesday
New Harp A Disappointment
I took the trolley into the Quarter Wednesday evening, after having been rained out the previous day. I had $1.75 on me as I stepped off at Royal Street.
The 25 Cent Matter
I was immediately skeezed by none other than Carlos, who lives right on my floor, diagonally across the hall from me at Sacred Heart.
This was a test of my discipline in serving Krsna, and acting out of love without worrying over the fruits of actions; such as I have been reading about lately in the Bhagavad Gita, as I have been fasting the past 6 days.
He wanted 50 cents "to get home" on the trolley, he said.
I was pretty sure that he had skeezed a lot more than that, in order to get drunk and maybe even buy weed, but here he was, literally my biblical neighbor, asking me for 50 cents.
That would have left me 25 cents short of my own ride home, should I go out and not make a cent, and I told him so.
"Don't worry about it; I'll get it from somewhere," he said, sounding sincere.
I took a few steps away and then returned to give him a quarter, thinking that it would at least cut the amount that he would have to skeeze in half.
He accepted it graciously and seemed to take me at my word when I said that it was all I could give him and still have trolley fare home. I was physically weak on my 6th day of fasting and walking the 2 miles home would be more strenuous than usual.
At least he didn't argue: "You're gonna make some money out there, guaranteed, come on, give me the whole 50 cents."
I really did feel like I was of very little faith to fear that I might not even make 25 cents with a brand new harmonica and sober.
Then, I walked Royal Street, past all my habitual stops for alcohol and cigarettes, and encountered Tim the violinist on the corner of St. Louis Street.
He is the one who is buying my amp at 50 bucks a week.
He told me that he had some money for me; and I had to smile when he asked me if he could just give me half of the agreed upon amount, citing that he needed to turn his phone on and a few other things.
The 25 cent matter with Carlos seemed suddenly trivial. I couldn't help wonder if, had I given Carlos the whole 50 cents, would Tim have given me the whole 50 bucks?
I finally got to use the new harmonica. I had broken it in a bit and it had sounded good; it came tuned to A440, unlike the Stagg brand that I had been using which was 1% sharp at A444.
I was 5 days sober and had only a gallon jug of distilled water by my side as I started to play at about 9:40 PM.
I started out playing the few songs that I knew in the key of A, and was able to make 24 bucks, 20 of which came when I was playing "Tangled Up In Blue," by Bob Dylan, and then I soon ran out of material and started to repeat stuff.
And then, as I broke it in further, by reaching for higher and lower notes, I  noticed that the 11 dollar "New Orleans Special" was not as good as the 14 dollar Stagg brand had been. Some of the notes sounded unevenly and others wouldn't sound unless I tilted the angle of my mouth. I guess I just got a bad one, and had thrown out the receipt before realizing it. Something had told me to hold on to the receipt because the harp had been picked off the pile of about a dozen at the music store by one of the female employees whom I get the idea doesn't really like me.
I was also uncomfortable singing all of my key of G material one step higher; it just doesn't sound like the original recording, something that I think helps a cover song, even though most listeners don't have perfect pitch.
I knocked off after a 24 dollar hour; and bought some more water and some cat food.
I got the brilliant idea, as I walked back on Royal Street, to go back to my dumpster diving ways for the sake of the cat, and found a nice breast of Popeye's chicken that some patron had taken only one bite out of. I wrapped it in plastic and stuffed it in my backpack. I still had the can of "cat" food, but wanted to introduce the chicken to see if the cat would eat it, or even prefer it to Friskies brand, at 69 cents a can.
As I dug through the dumpster, I was beset by feelings of embarrassment, as if street people might see me and think: "I thought he was doing good and had an apartment and everything; he's certainly wearing some nicer clothes..."
I felt like yelling "It's for my cat; it's for my cat!" How the mighty homeless have fallen...
I know people say that cats can choke on bones; but I don't really want a pet that is that stupid, anyways, so choke away...
How the heck did cats evolve over billions of years to their present incarnation if they choke on bones. I think there were a lot of bones out there, millions of centuries ago....
I have been on the fast for 6 days now.
Thanksgiving Givings
Of course, then, I was one of the winners in the raffling off of 30 "Thanksgiving" meals here at Sacred Heart. I am to pick it up next Wednesday in the multipurpose room. I would be on my 12th day of fasting at that point.
This was one of two Thanksgiving give-aways which Sacred Heart Apartments have been chosen to be the recipient of.
Howard won the other raffle for a voucher from Homefront Harvest to receive "up to 50 pounds of food, necessities, and Avon products -total value of over $250.
He slid the thing under my door with a note telling me that I could have it.
That one needs to be picked up in 2 days (this Friday).


Alex said...

Here's why California will always be better than NOLA:

Our guys can play/sing in tune.

Daniel McKenna said...

What singing? I need to get some newer stuff posted; have you heard "Cavorting With Amy," on the sidebar, yet?
Those playing spots don't last; they depend upon one cool manager inside; but, as soon as some higher up stops for a random visit; the official CVS rulebook comes out; buskers are in there, somewhere,

Alex said...

We've got better places to busk than in front of CVS anyway, tons better places.

We've got places that have belonged to certain buskers for decades. I've used those places when the established buskers were not there, with their blessings.

Screw the south, man, you can keep it.