I had been to see a gig on Lonsdale Street in the Melbourne CBD as part of the Melbourne Music Week.
This odd ‘festival’ seems to partially consist of paying well known musicians lots of money to play on the street disguised as buskers. This was the case at least for the gig that I saw, which was largely ignored by the passers by, with the exception of the woman who gave the artist 20 cents, and the homeless man who gate crashed and joined in by ranting incomprehensibly.
Something absurd was happening on the other side of the street. There was what for all intents and purposes appeared to be a dirty bearded homeless man, wearing a colourful beanie and an elegant golden dress. He manipulated a frenzied marionette made from sticks and gumnuts, while jumping about himself like a frenzied puppet, yelling at the top of his voice and playing the harmonica.
“Are you frightened? A little bit frightened!” (Bemused onlookers kept a healthy distance) “Get LOOOOOOSE!…with your change!!” (He shimmied) “Entertainment on the street YEEEEAHHH! Im not meant to be here!!! Its illeeee-GAL! Illegal in the mall!”
Closer inspection revealed that he did in fact have a permit, proudly displayed beside his hat. This only left us more confused.