Saturday, January 10, 2009

Street Performers Are The Best

Ok - we have all been to places like Chicago, L.A., New York, San Francisco and all the tourist destinations where street performers thrive. For the most part - street performers are really talented.

But on occasion...some really suck.

So here is my day on Thursday. I am in L.A. on an appointment with someone I met on my way back from Honolulu last November. Instead of heading home in the heat of traffic (I had anticipated this - so Kat and the kids drove up with me) we decided to head over to Santa Monica Pier.

For those who aren't familiar Santa Monica Pier is really cool. It has roller coasters, an arcade and lots of other stuff. The pier and it's really close other amusement area, 3rd Street Promenade, are home to dozens of street performers and vendors.

You have the typical robot people, henta tattoo artists, sax players, and the never-ending "10 Year-old Michael Jackson" impersonator with his mooching mother and father close-by. (yes- I am convinced these kids are forced performers)

Well - we were at the pier and it being Winter - huge crowds were absent, and thus the good street performers as well.

In fact - there was only one performer.

The crappiest puppeteer in the world. Yes - he doesn't dance - his puppet dances. Or so he would want you to think the puppet dances.

In reality - the puppet goes up and down, and then up and down again. No, the feet don't move, the head doesn't move, and the arm and hands don't move either. The mans hand that holds the strings go up and down bending the puppet at the knee's until they hit the ground, and then he brings it up till the legs are fully extended, then back down again.

Of course, all this is to the beat of 80's R&B rap like MC Hammer, Bobby Brown, and LL COOL J. It wouldn't be otherwise.

So as we approach this guy picks up the beat and really gets into it and I just watch to see what he can do with the puppet and nothing new happens. As I realize that this guy is the crappiest puppeteer on the face of the planet I notice the small crowd around him.

Its not a crowd, its his own kids holding out money like they arent his kids and they are tipping him. As we walk by the strategic clapping and laughing (obviousely fake laughing) pick up into high volume.

As we walk past, it all stopped, and all three kids turn to look at us, like, "did it work, did we lure them in to give us money", followed by the "Crap, it didn't work...I hate my dad for dragging me out in the cold" look.

I actually feel bad for the kids (and his wife who showed up later...who also looked as pissed as the kids to be there in the cold watching her husband. It seemed as if she is totally aware of the fact that he is the crappiest puppeteer and performer on the block).

Enjoy the picture.

The man of many talents is in the background with his wife dead center, kids to the right.

The ever so popular name on a grain of rice vendor.

A few yards down the innovative and highly competitive name and picture on a grain of rice vendor

I'm Forrest, Forrest Gump. My friends call me Forrest Gump.

There are more pictures of the family on roller coasters, at the Kings Hockey Game, and having fun together on Katherins and mine Facebook pages. Check them out there.

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