Yesterday on the tube in London a chap got on with his guitar. And yes, he started to play. No one looked up. One bloke got his earphones out, others turned up the volume on their MP3s and I buried myself in my newspaper. After a fairly rough tune, he offered round his hat. No one moved. Any sympathy he might have elicited was lost when he responded by saying ‘What a waste of space. F*** the lot of yer.’
This pretty much summed up why I feel torn when someone busks on the tube. I haven’t asked them to be there, I didn’t want to listen to them, and I can’t escape! I feel guilty not giving them money but then I think, why should I? At least with a busker on the street or station you can decide whether to stop and listen. Unfortunately I don’t think this bloke had quite got the fact that just because you provide something, doesn’t mean that people want it. Perhaps if he’d asked the carriage for requests, he might have got a better response (though possibly not). ‘Riders on the Storm’ didn’t quite do it. Maybe ‘Going Underground’ would have been more apt.
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Email: alison @ growinginsights.co.uk
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