NYC Musician

The pavement was wet from the early morning showers and the trees in Union Square dripped on the benches and bright green tables on the lawn. The trees dripped on people walking across the square. Many people walked in and up out of the subway entrance and away from Union Square, down the avenues and streets. It was busy. Everyone was going somewhere. They walked along the wet pavement pass the statue of George Washington, clean from the showers. Tourist were taking pictures of the statue. At the restaurant that looks like an Italian villa, two waiters wiped dry the patio tables. The restaurant would be packed soon. The streets were jammed packed with morning traffic. Around the square the chess players and street vendors and musicians were setting up shop.

There was one musician already playing his guitar. I could see him from the café where I sat under an awning, reading and having coffee. The man had his guitar slung across his chest and randomly chose men and women out of the moving crowd.He played and sang to them, following the person along for a few steps.

“I could see him from the café where I sat under an awning, reading and having coffee.”

No one gave him money and the musician yelled and cursed at the person he chose. I watched him do this over and over again; playing, not getting anything, and then yelling. I left the café and went to class.

Coming home from class I saw the man still playing and singing then cursing his ungrateful audience. It was hot and humid after the rain and Union Square was dry and crowded. The musician’s voice was hoarse, now. I walked passed him and didn’t see any money in his guitar case. He yelled and cursed at me, too.

When I crossed the square in the evening it was not so humid and felt cool. There was a breeze and I stopped at the cafe before class and had a beer. I watched everyone walking by under the trees that rustled in the breeze and the square filled as the evening went on. The musician was gone, but there was a man dancing in his underwear. I paid for my beer and went to class.