If the daily hundred-degree heat in Madrid this summer makes me crack and I decide to go on a killing spree, you can rest assured that it won't be primary school kids or heads of state that get shot up. No. The outlet of choice for my homicidal rage is those street performance artists who clog up anywhere you'll find a steady flow of tasteless morons who don't understand the value of currency that's not in notes (aka tourists).They are, quite simply, a plague. If Estonian prostitutes don't get paid just for standing on the street looking like a trolley dash in a Maybeline factory, then why should I give money to a gay cowboy painted silver with a duck whistle in his mouth?
But it's worse when they try and make a statement. This weekend I saw a woman on her knees pretending to clean the street next to a sign that read "This performance is dedicated to the silent women of history." Good point Emmeline Pankhurst. But even if it wasn't a laughably simplistic reduction of at least 100 years of public discussion about gender equality, the fact remains that you expect me to PAY for this. That's not performance dude, that's fucking extortion. It's a big, shiny guilt trip, and one you should pay me for--for fighting the urge to scream "Idiot!" in your face.
What really gets to me is that it's begging without the lack of self esteem that a good beggar should show at all times. Don't make out like you deserve it. Like you're doing me a favor by standing on a stool caked in mud for five hours.
Just when I'd consigned them all to an eternity of horrible torture in my fantasy hell (which is getting pretty crowded), I found this walking legend.
I love this guy. I have no idea what his real name is, as after I took the photo up top, he disappeared from his usual spot and I haven't seen him since. And it's depressing me. Finally, there was someone who got it. Someone who could laugh at himself for the sake of bringing home a few extra euros. Someone whose gut alone could tell more stories than a pathological liar on dexedrine at a Scientology convention. But where is that gut now?