Sunday, March 20, 2016



A PROJECTIVE TEST is a test which subjects an individual to respond to indistinct stimuli, after which that individual’s interpretations about the stimuli supposedly reveals a few aspects of the individual’s personality.
PROJECT TESTS emerge from the school of psychology that suggests people have unconscious thoughts or urges, and projective tests purportedly uncover these urges.  Taking any projective test, the participant is shown an ambiguous image and then asked to give a first response or meaning that comes to mind.  The RORSCHACH, the most famous of the projectives, created by Swiss Freudian Psychoanalyst, Hermann Rorschach, has individuals describe 10 different ambiguous INKBLOT picture cards.

Subjected to these shadowy inkblots, individuals tested see colorful imaginings of dancing bears and long-necked geese, bats and butterflies.  Some people see images of female breasts and male sexual organs;  while some people see only … shadowy inkblots. (Administratively speaking, the more one sees on the card the more creative the person.  Seeing zeroth on the card indicates neurosis.)

Hmmm … I wonder what do people really see when they see a guitar busker?

No matter how gaudily costumed, loads of passers-by tend to see only images of the gray and the grim.  Oftentimes they see someone is most likely homeless, or at best, a sort of a ragtag who they imagine rents a bedbug infested broom closet somewhere downtown. Oftentimes they see someone is most likely unemployed, a ne’er-do-well who represents a rather poor ersatz of any live stage performance.  Perhaps they see an addicted bum strumming only to gather enough coin in a case to buy a bottle or a joint.  Or perhaps they see someone to bully, to heckle or harass, to rebuff and to give flak, an opportune and shining moment to decry a particular busking performance or even decry that beggar-with-a-guitar lifestyle.  

However, sometimes some consumers see someone who represents an imaginary freedom and adventure.  Sometimes they see someone with a piquant life style, someone with whom they could dalliance in quixotic fashion.  Oftentimes they see someone just to toss coin or two for what they actually do and … what they project to be doing.

I'm a believer in PROJECTIVE PSYCHOLOGY.  I believe that the things that people see are projections of their own realities.  I believe the quiddity of buskers draws out the quiddity of their consumers.  And if indeed this is true, then the buskers themselves, are the stimuli for a PROJECTIVE TEST.

Danny Kaye, American actor, singer, and comedian said that “Life is a blank canvas, and you need to throw all the paint on it you can.”  Sadly, some people don’t seem to toss a lot of paint; but rather than living their dreams they scumble year after year living the nightmare of property mortgages and car payments and other middleclass misadventures.

Deafblind author and activist, Helen Keller, said that “Life is either a daring adventure … or nothing.” To those folks who do nothing or not much, I’m sure they would imagine busking to be a daring adventure.

“All great adventures have moments that are really crap,” according to American author, Ellen Potter.  Those who imagine a busker to be a great adventurer likely don’t think about the crappy consumer counter-patterns, those non-consumers who on occasion heckle and harass.

American writer, Elizabeth Bucchianeri has suggested that, “It’s the unknown that draws people, and ‘twas the adventure of the unknown that initially drew me to busking and in turn, I believe, continues to draw my consumers to me.  Just as the inkblots are considered projections, so too then are my buskspots projections.

Whenever you see a busker remember that  … 
what you see (unconsciously) and what you say you see represents both the real you and the person you (unconsciously) really want to be!


No comments:

Post a Comment