As I left Starbucks this afternoon, I heard accompanied violin music. A man was playing some new age-ish much on the corner of the driveway. I stopped to listen, and then stepped in to take a picture.
As I did, a man stepped up to talk to me. I remember seeing him inside Starbucks. He had an earbud and an ugly polo shirt. He said, “Did you take a picture of that guy?”
I admitted, “Yes.”
He said, “I’ve been watching him for two days. He’s been out here every day. I figure he’s making $30 an hour. He’s not homeless. Just out there taking advantage of people.”
I said, “Oh. I didn’t know.”
Honestly, I was going to put a few dollars in his box. Just like I would do for anyone busking. Just like I hope someone would do for me one day when I am playing my guitar somewhere.
I got in my truck and drove away. But I thought, “Can’t I throw a few bucks to a musician on a street corner without feeling guilty?” So what if he’s not homeless? He’s pretty good. He might play a request. He might have a family. At least he is doing something.