Philip Brewer's Writing Progress


Saturday, 25 August 2001

No writing or rewriting today, although I've been thinking about rewriting.

Jackie and I went out to breakfast yesterday. The poor girl at the cash register got confused while doing the transaction. The cash register didn't tell her what the change was supposed to be. I don't know if it usually told her, but didn't this time because of an oddity in the transaction, or if this was one of her first times working the register ever. But the bill was $8 something and I gave her a twenty and she was stumped. She got the silver okay, but she couldn't figure out the bills. She picked up a one, then put it down, then picked up a five and then another five, then put them down. Then she picked up a ten and stood there for a while, then put that down. Then she started counting out ones, one after another, until she had six or seven, and then she put those down. The poor girl. I was about to try to help when the owner noticed her problem and helped her out. But, as I was leaving, I heard him telling her, "I'm sorry, but . . ." So, I suspect she either got fired or at least taken off the cash register. Poor girl. I'm as likely as the next guy to sneer at people who can't make change without a computer, but I hate to be even peripherally involved with someone losing their job.

There's been an explosion of busking at the local Farmer's Market. The last few years there have sometimes been some musical entertainment, but it was an occasional appearance by one or another group of four or five people. Today, though, there were at least four solo performers, a mandolin trio, and a percussion ensemble. Two weeks ago there was a little girl, about eight, playing the violin. She played okay (i.e. she was no child prodigy--about what you'd expect from any random eight-year-old who'd had lessons). She cranked out the stuff you'd expect to find at the back of a first book on violin. ("Mary had a little lamb," "Twinkle twinkle little star," etc.) But, because she was young and cute, she was making out like a bandit. In just two minutes while Jackie was buying tomatoes at the next stall over, that girl got four or five dollars, mostly from grandmother-aged women. It looked to me like she already had twenty or thirty bucks in her violin case. I was impressed.


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