Tuesday, November 23, 2010


I rode the subway again the other day when I was in New York City for a recording session.

In one particular train car there was a guy seated and playing his guitar with gloves on. Granted it did create a unique muted sound as he picked out singular notes to match the tonality of his words and sang a song I did not recognize.

The train weaved and rumbled through a couple of stops and he continued to sing. Finally he finished his song and took his hat off and looked around the crowded train car for anyone to show a monitory appreciation. No one did.

As he played I watched the other people in the subway car. Some were reading, some were writing, some were sleeping and some just stared into empty space seemingly oblivious to this man’s public creativity and performance. Everyone ignored him. Nobody applauded. Nobody said anything and the guy looked surprised as he got off the next stop. He was probably headed to another car and a more receptive audience.

He wasn’t very good at either singing or playing the guitar with gloves on. But without inhibitions and with complete confidence in himself he played and sang and hoped for some remuneration.

I wondered then and still do today if this guy might have been an angel placed there for me to appreciate and acknowledge with a small token of his performance. I couldn’t understand his words and the din within the moving train was overwhelming.

I'd like to think that angels move in and out of our purview with offered lessons of love and tolerance. It’s one of the reasons why I keep a few folded dollars in my pocket to toss into baskets or hats or place in the hand of some seeker who seems to need it.

1 comment:

LAS said...

The man was giving what he had to brighten someone's day and most NYr's know street performers (wherever they may be work for there mere change and maybe discovery).

Every Monday morning when I arrived at Grand Central there was a fellow playing his guitar and singing and everyone who passed just walked without acknowledging the fellow. His had a box for his change out in front of him.

I always appreciate anyone who is willing to do something to earn some money and often gave whatever I could. They give and we receive if not for only a few minutes an uplift from the daily grind.

Thanks to you and all that give back!!! There are angels in this world and we recognize each other!!!

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