Tuesday, August 2, 2016

I Am Cod And Bacon Man

  • 4 Dollar Monday
  • Travel Plans 

I got to the Lilly Pad and was setting up when a young lady asked me the time. It was 10:56 PM. Monday night.

I started playing "Piano Man," by Billy Joel, substituting "It's 10:56 on a Monday; the regular crowd is home in bed" for the first line.

I played until about 15 minutes before Rouses Market was to close, or for about one hour and 45 minutes, with the highlights of the evening being when one guy put 3 dollars next to the tip jar, and when one other guy put a dollar in the jar; those were the highlights; both of them.

I guess I make about $2.30 an hour busking sometimes.

That doesn't exactly make me want to go a full 8 hours, in hopes of making 20 bucks. Although, an 8 hour window of opportunity would greatly increase the odds of "the drunk rich guy who throws you 50 bucks" showing up.

One thing I might consider doing is just sitting there with the guitar next to me for an extra hour or so after I tire of playing, figuring that if any of certain varieties of people come along, then there will be money in it for me:
  • The Guy Who Gives You Money To Let Him Play Your Guitar
  • The Guy Who Want's To Sing A Pop Song To Impress A Girl He Just Met
  • The Guy Who Always Gives At Least A Couple Of Bucks To Buskers At The Sight Of Them Just To Support Music In General
  • The Guy Who Sees How Slow It Is And Throws A Good Tip As Salve In Your Time Of Hardship
  • The Tourists Who Remember Seeing You On A Past Visit And Feel As Though You Merit A Tip As A Tribute To Your Continuity
  • The Drunk Rich Guy Who Throws You 50 Bucks
Health And Science

I have been exercising as best as possible using the milk jugs filled with water and the bamboo pole. I plan to look for lead, probably at a particular thrift store in the Bywater region of town that is pretty large and cluttered with stuff just like buckets full of sinkers for anglers or those lead weights that are used to balance tires; stuff that I have seen in there before and just shook my head at.

I figure a gallon jug filled with lead sinkers would weigh a lot more than one filled with water -probably 80 pounds more.

The Quarter Mile Adjustment

I had been approaching the problem, from different angles, of figuring out if the "quarter mile" that I run a lot is actually a quarter mile.

I had paced it off; walking like a referee, and come up with 455 yards, which would be 15 yards (or about 3 seconds running) more than a quarter mile.

Then, I got on Google Maps and tried to use the scale of miles along with a ruler to measure the distance on the computer screen; but was hindered by the fact that the route is pretty well covered by trees and it was hard to determine where the exact starting and finishing points were.

I thought about getting the kind of "range finder" that golfers use to determine yardage and which club to use accordingly, but I think they might operate using the height of the flag in the hole as a calibrator.

I thought about getting a buddy to stand at the finish line and set off a firecracker so I could start the stopwatch when I saw the flash and then stop it when I heard the report, but that would leave me susceptible to too much human error, as even a 100th of a second off in hitting either or both of the buttons would throw the calculation off by 3 or 4 yards.

Then, the other night, I timed myself riding my bike over the same course. That yielded a time of just a bit over one minute, or just a bit slower than 15 miles per hour, which I once determined to be my average speed on a 10 speed bike, based upon long trips that I had clocked in the past.
This morning, I used the bike a bit more scientifically.

I put it in a certain gear, and then measured how far it went after giving exactly one revolution to the pedals. It was 193.75 inches (using a ruler that had 16th inch gradients) or 5.382 yards.
I then calculated that, to traverse a quarter mile in that gear, the rider would have to crank the pedals 81.754 times.

I then went out and, starting at the crack in the sidewalk where I begin my run and ending at the blue awning that I hit the stop button on the watch at; counted 90 and a half pedal cranks, and the same on the return trip.

This indicates that I have been running 47 yards (about 11%) too far.

This is good news, as it means that I was on a 6:20 per mile pace when I ran my fastest "quarter," rather than the 7 minutes and 8 seconds based upon the miscalculated distance.

When I was 14 years old, I ran the mile in about 6:20 and, though I don't expect to match that at the age of 53 without more training; I hadn't expected to be that much slower, since I am running a much shorter distance and can sprint the last 100 feet or so of it, which is something that I didn't do at quarter mile intervals when running the 6:20 mile at the age of 14.

Travel Plans

I put a dish of food outside with Harold the cat when I let him out. If I am going to enlist the help of someone to feed him while I'm away, I might as well get him used to the idea of being fed outside, where he will basically stay for the entire 3? weeks that I will be gone.

I'll have to leave about 20 dollars worth of food with the person.

What I am deliberating over now is; should I leave whomever it is (probably my next door neighbor Wayne) Harold's absolute favorite flavors of food, like cod and cheesy bacon, and lamb with clam, or should I leave him with the stuff that he is indifferent to, but will eat when he is hungry enough?

I think it say's something about me as a cat owner that I would let Harold suffer through 3 weeks of lousy food, just so that when I come back he will love me more because I am cod and bacon man.

1 comment:

alex carter said...

Busking is indeed a "put in the hours" game, and one thing you could do is pace yourself, taking a break between songs. Also, you could use it as open-air practice, working on any old thing you feel like, since people seem to pay a musician who's relaxed and having a good time a lot more than one who looks stressed and seems to be a "clock watcher".