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Memorial Day Weekend, part 1

May 31, 2010

text by Andrew

edited by Hannah

photos by Haleigh

It took nearly two years of daydreaming, practicing fiddle tunes to the point of insanity, and serious neglect of my scholarly duties, but I have finally gotten a taste of what being a professional musician is like!

Ok, that may be a bit of an exaggeration, but Saturday night Sarah and I set up on the corner of 4th & Broadway to treat some of Nashville’s finest with our acoustic goodness.  It was a total blast!  I thought I would be nervous about it, but when I started playing I tried to channel my inner Chris Thile and it felt completely natural.  We played until our fingers were bruised and Sarah’s forearm started spasming, but seeing the smiles of people genuinely enjoying our music and watching their toes tapping as they waited for the crossing signal to change was pretty damn awesome.

Perhaps more importantly, busking downtown provided for some of the best people watching since the last time I saw the LARPers at Elmington Park.  Some guy, after examining my mandolin and Sarah’s guitar, loudly proclaimed for everyone within 5 blocks to hear: “Her junk is bigger than your junk!”  After which, his wife walked up to us and told me not to worry because she was pretty sure both of our junk was bigger than her husband’s.  I thanked her, but inside I felt kind of bad for her, for at least a couple of reasons…

A middle aged black woman checked out Sarah’s donk, grabbed a handful, and walked away without saying a word.  I’m not really sure what to say about that.  Strange.  And inappropriate, even by Broadway standards.  I guess the last real standout of the evening was a really drunk dude who walked past and enjoyed our playing so much that he turned and stumbled his way back towards our direction.  As he approached, I saw that he was wearing one of those shirts with the yellow smiley face on it. That creepy floating head looked only slightly less deranged than the crooked smirk and glassy eyes of the man under the shirt as he lost his balance and came crashing down into my legs right in the middle of our brilliant cover of Ke$ha’s Tik Tok.  He must have forgotten to spit and rinse after brushing his teeth with that bottle of Jack.  You know what?  Did I say Nashville’s finest?  I meant America’s finest.

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