Kick her for a dollar?

It was so nice out yesterday and I didn’t have anything to do, so I walked around the Market for a while. It’s an interesting place if you go at the right time.  Walking around most of downtown Ottawa is pretty dull – especially if you go outside of core business hours.  But if you stick to places with food, booze, or both (ie. the Market) you usually come across at least a few strange things.

Among the sights this weekend was a girl holding a sign inviting people to pay $1 for the privilege of kicking her. Ya. Generally, I am against random or unnecessary violence (and are there really any other kinds?), but I really wanted to kick this girl. My feeling is that anyone willing to make such an invitation definitely deserves to get kicked – at least once. You know, as a learning tool.

Sadly, I had no cash. The universe is so cruel.

Another strange sight: a busker covering Billy Joel. Now, normally a busker performing someone else’s song isn’t that notable.  But this particular busker was playing Piano Man … wait for it… on a guitar! And I don’t think he was aware of the irony at all.

To cap off my stroll, I passed through that really scuzzy section of Rideau St. where people waiting for buses mingle with the homeless.  The city has been piping annoying music into this area for as long as I have lived in Ottawa.  I guess the thought is that the music will stop “undesirables” from loitering. Did I mention that this area has a major bus stop – where people wait for perpetually late buses? Anyway, this part of the rant isn’t about the location – it’s about the music that was playing when I walked through.  I’ll admit that he isn’t exactly my style, but when did Tom Waits start being used to deter loitering? The guy is a legend. Apparently his work is now right up there with classical music in its ability to make people want to leave.

Oh Byward Market, you boggle my mind. Next time, I’m sticking to Elgin St.

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