Thank-you, JAIME CARLSON!
Once again, as the Cathedral Arts Festival busker coordinator, you’ve designed the perfect clement day for busking. (The Cathedral Arts Festival is the spring and artsy a-go-go held annually in the Cathedral heart of Regina, Saskatchewan, organized by the bon vivant Cathedral clerisy, a citizenship of white collars who have abdicated the middle-class stereotype, replacing such with a social voice and practically any planetary cause.)
Indeed, this particular notion I'm presenting has a credible psychological counterpattern, being the newly placed managers at the glozey neighborhood Safeway, who have formally banned buskers from their premise and surrounding property, so cited for the reasons of safety and security.
SPECIAL ALERT to the Managers of the 13th Avenue CATHEDRAL SAFEWAY: I pack a guitar, not a gun. Do I sound angry?
The Cathedral Arts Festival is an annual comity, having a callithump of 35,000 people gormandizing tube steaks and donuts; 35,000 consumers for the week long celebration, who pungle up and chaffer their coins to the potters and painters and sundry buskers.
And among those sundry buskers were the cavalier trio of Eric the fiddler, Baron the drummer (on his pan), and self, Neil the hummer & strummer (on my Blues Harp and twelve-string). Busking is an avocation for Eric, a livelihood for Baron, and a study in buskology for me.
Every three or four minutes we fashioned from the fiddle, the pan, the harp, and guitar, a distinctly strange sounding opus, stylizing songs from the Beatles to Bobby Dylan, for our consumers of friends (some) and strangers (many).
Whether we are marching into battle or holding our hats to our hearts during the anthem at the hockey game, the power of music can turn us from a crowd into a community. Few moments in life match the power of music, and nothing matches having happy consumers, in the moment, in middle of an intersection, dancing to our tunes. For three busking hours we played and sang and swept ourselves into the grand Regina Cathedral Village Arts Festival.
Our last buskspot, we made our way inchmeal in colubrine fashion through the bumper to bumper pedestrian traffic, to replace Matt, a buskeroo in black leather diamond-studded cowboy shirt, stationed at the end of the line of the artisan booths.
This shirt cost me $360 dollars, he said.
Arriving in good time, I offered to play my didgeridoo along with his western ballads.
How much will you charge me? He asked.
Nothin’, I answered.
Really! He relied.
This is your buskspot, man. We’re just killin’ the clock.
And so did I doo until he left for his next station. Before he left, he handed me his card:
PROFESSIONAL SINGER & SONG WRITER
Founder Of The Regina Sober Jam
Matt disclosed that he’d been clean from drugs and alcohol for eight months. However, cigarettes he claimed, were still a vice. In fact, we couldn’t help but notice as he was busking, Matt attempting to bum smokes from the very people tossing coins into his guitar case.
Good luck to you, Matt, but …
And, for anyone wanting to winkle your way out of an addiction, I strongly advise you to give yourself: 31 DAYS
In the October 74 issue of Runner’s World magazine, 700 runners responded to a questionnaire published by William Glasser. Seventy-five percent of those respondents claimed to be addicted to running, and that running had enhanced their lives. It was from these responses that Glasser became convinced that running was the hardest but surest way to positive addiction.
In his book, Positive Addiction (1976), William Glasser presents that a number of self-improvement activities could become positively addictive, and that these positive addictions could strengthen and make lives more meaningful.
The theory of Positive Addiction suggests that people affixed to socially accepted activities (music lessons, sports teams, and volunteerism for example) have little time to indulge in behaviors that are socially recognized as being negative activities (drugging, drinking, and gambling for example).
My theory is that anyone addicted to anything, those addicted to something they can’t get away from … can … provided they dedicate themselves to a self-prescribed positive activity for 31 consecutive days.
For example, someone wanting to quit drinking and start running can quit drinking and be a runner, provided that person dedicates 31 days in a row to going for a run.
This 31 days theory will prove the same for someone wanting to quit drugging or gambling and wanting to start weight training. If that person is willing to get to the gym and do a workout for 31 consecutive days, the negative addiction of either drugging or gambling would dissipate.
And that is the skinny for my 31 DAYS.
31 DAYS is a simple theory that demands a ton of dedication. Also, 31 DAYS is a simple theory that will be politically difficult to promote against the adversarial censure of those camping in the chronic brain disease theory and those pitching their tents under the stars of the AA twelve-step theory. (For the record, anyone challenging the disease theory would be regarded as a scientific fool, and anyone challenging the twelve-step theory would be regarded as sacrilegious – even though neither theory has much merit in academia.)
Those marching in my Chaucerian Parade this week include Paul, Erin Wood, and Nathan Wieler (a.k.a Wheels).
- Paul introduced himself to me as I was busking in front of SHOPPERS ON BROAD. Paul is a banker, a friendly and sincere fellow who had … heard of my blog … through Erin Wood … a familiar stranger when I busk!
Paul, you made my day!
Erin, thanks for the promo!
Paul and Erin, hope to see you again!
- My buddy, Nathan Wieler (a.k.a. Wheels), was the officiating referee in the final Memorial Cup game between the Halifax Mooseheads and Portland Winterhawks. Wheels was also the recipient of the WESTERN HOCKEY LEAGUE OFFICIAL OF THE YEAR AWARD.
Good job, Wheels!
And to close … Go BOSTON BRUINS!