Cranky has a kind of annual amnesia when it comes to compatible places to play. Every year Cranky thinks it’s a good idea to play at the First Friday Art Walk only to find out that it has become a different animal than it was in the early days eight or nine years ago. There’s simply too many (clueless) people and too much going and the carnival atmosphere gives Cranky a case of the PTSD from the days of the Clown College Circus.
The last few years when Cranky wanted to play out on that dreaded Friday, Longfellow Square, on the periphery of the Art Walk, has been a viable option. This Friday however was an exception as the dunderheads who organize this fiasco decided to block off Congress St. (the main drag of the Art Walk), thereby giving opportunists like the lame-ass drummer’s circle* the notion that they could just set up right there in Cranky’s front yard.
Cranky had set up at Longfellow Square 5:30. Shortly after that one drummer showed up and then slowly they all started gathering around like a clan. If their goal was to make Cranky uncomfortable, they succeeded. It was obvious that they were waiting around for the street to get closed off so they could set up out there. So by 6:00, with the street closing eminent, Cranky packed up and left.
Cranky is non-confrontational by nature but he’s been known to tell other buskers to bug out if they try to set up on his stake. There’s an unspoken rule with buskers that you don’t fuck with another busker’s turf. The problem with these drummers was that they obviously were not buskers and were using their cluelessness as a form of arrogance in order to kick Cranky out of his claim. Cranky thought of sticking around playing, by as mentioned above, Crank is non-conf and it wasn’t worth the effort to explain basic busking ethics to those yahoos.
So, Cranky cut out, heading down State St.toward Spring thinking he would cut up to the safe haven of Strange Maine and hang out for a bit. But, as he was walking he thought about the possibility of playing at the Old Port. Cranky’s logic in action: If all the idiots are out on Congress Street for the First Friday Art Walk then, the Old Port, which is normally full of them, will be nearly empty.
Turned out Cranky’s logic was impeccable ( as usual.) The irony here is that the Old Port is the other one of those places that Cranky has annual amnesia about. Every year he thinks it’s a fantastic idea to play down there for the tourists and every year he is made miserable by the venture.
Well it turns out that the First Friday is the night to play in the Old Port. There were still plenty of gawking tourists but knowing that they were missing out on what was “really happening” downtown, kinda made Cranky happy to play to them. Cranky has already planned to revisit this scene next month.
Better wish him luck.
*Note: Cranky has no animosity toward any of the individuals of this particular drumming circle, it’s the entity as a whole that he has issues with. Cranky finds the ‘music’ of drummers, just drummers, abhorrent.