Today, I performed on the street in Monterey for four hours. During much of that time, my mouth was going at full speed but my mind was sitting on the sidelines saying, “My God, when is this going to stop?” Because the crowds kept coming and throwing money into my hat and people came up asking how much it would cost if I came to their house and did a party and people came up saying, “I saw you the other day and we live out in Palm Desert and want you to come out there!”
Finally at 7:30 pm, I got a little breather and shut down for a few minutes. I was hungry but I didn’t want to eat because I had to work. I don’t dare count my money during a show–bad luck–but I knew there was a lot in there. No matter how good I’m doing, I don’t go easy on myself, I just continue pushing. It is a job, after all, and there are people in offices pushing themselves even harder.
Recently, there was a homeless guy playing guitar next to me on the wharf. It was about noon on a sunny day, and the guy was making a little money. Pretty soon, his friend comes up.
“Hey, you’ve worked hard,” he said. “Let’s go have a drink.”
So after only an hour on the street, the guy packed up and start his drinking for the day. That’s the antithesis of my style. What I believe in is work for as long as you can and as hard as you can. You can worry about the aching bones tomorrow.
Suddenly, this 10-year-old Hispanic kid shows up.
“I saw your show, and you were great,” he said with this great smile. “So I wanted to give you these.”
He held out a jumbo wrapped chocolate chip cookie and a cannoli in a to-go box.
“Thank you very much,” I said, smiling.
“My father owns a bakery.”
“Over there,” he said, pointing, and he slipped me a business card.
“That’s great,” I said. “I’ll go over and visit before I leave.”
Around 8 pm, the crowds had pretty much dispersed and I packed up my gear and walked down the street. Strangely, though, there was no bakery where the kid had pointed. I walked up and down the street, but no bakery. So I pulled out the business card and looked at the address. It was nowhere near here.
So I walked to my car, packed my gear into it, and typed the address into the GPS.
“No such address,” the GPS said.
It was very strange. Why would someone print up cards with an address that didn’t exist? I wondered for a moment whether it was a scam, but I couldn’t figure out what his angle might be. He had given me something, he hadn’t taken anything.
Then I looked at the business card again.
Angelina’s Heavenly Bakery
And I smiled, wondering about something impossible (but then, my business is the impossible): Was he an angel?