Nut Busker

Found myself in Las Vegas last weekend.  Not my favorite city, but it is certainly turgid with people-watching opportunities….

My friends and i were spending an evening at The Flamingo, pumping $20’s into slots and video poker, and pounding ‘free’ drinks for entertainment after dinner.  There was a text from Jan late in the evening – “Join us on the Margaritaville Patio!  There’s something we need you to do…”

Having consumed my weight in vodka tonics for the evening, it seemed a reasonable request.  i found them lined up at the bar outside, facing The Strip.  Without a word, i knew why i’d been summoned…


daisyfae:  No.  Just ‘No!’  Damn… That’s the toughest busker on earth….

We watched him for almost an hour.  Relieved that he had no customers.  Sipping his drink, texting on his phone, he manned his post…

Vegas Strip

We watched the parade on the Vegas Strip.  Couples… A double take… Usually The Man looking over his shoulder as they passed, tapping The Woman on the shoulder and pointing out The Crazy Guy who would take a shot to the balls for $20. Groups of Businessmen, giving him a side-eye and shaking their heads as they walked along. Packs of young men, the bachelor party brigades, goading each other with the challenge….

Occasionally, someone would slow down and read the entire sign. “Women, half price!” The busker would taunt them, in a good-natured way “C’mon! You’ve always wanted to do it, haven’t you?”

A man stepped up behind us...”I was here last night.  There were three BIG dudes who paid him… Launched him.  He went airborne.  Kicked him really hard.  He didn’t flinch…”

Mark and i were trying to figure out how he did it….

daisyfae: Do you think he tucks and tapes, like a drag queen?

Mark: Maybe he’s a eunuch?

We both agreed that we needed answers.  He handed me $10, and i pulled $10 from my pocket…


daisyfae: So, there was a guy who said you were hammered by some frat-bros last night.  Lifted you in the air and you didn’t flinch.  How the hell do you do this?  Do you tuck?

Busker: No.  It’s real.  I figure if I”m going to go in their faces like this, I need to put up…

daisyfae: Jesus, man… Doesn’t it hurt?

Busker: I just don’t give a fuck anymore…

i handed him $20, wished him a good evening, and he thanked me…

When he folded his sign, it simply said “Stay in school”.




14 thoughts on “Nut Busker

    • No kidding…. It was a bit heart-breaking to watch him…. He was sober, polite, articulate and just completely numb when i talked with him. i wanted more of the story, but felt as though i was intruding to ask…

  1. If you don’t like Vegas, guess what that makes you? SANE. I love that place. Horrible cold snap this morning makes me wish I woke up there in a nice hotel bed in The Cosmopolitan.

    I’m glad you put free in quotes. NOTHING is free there. The biggest comps go to the biggest losers.

    I’m glad you gave him the cash without the kick. You are beautiful.

    • i don’t hate it… i just need it in doses. There is free entertainment – just grab a seat at one of the strip side bars, and watch the parade! the people-watching is phenomenal! what surprised me on this trip? we took an excursion to Red Rocks canyon, did the Neon Boneyard and Mob Museum, and generally had fun.. It’s just more fun hammered….

      The first morning there, my friend and i arrived at 0930, were parked on stools in front of video penny slots by 1030, and pounding bloody marys for breakfast. That morning, i put $20 in a machine, drank four drinks, and cashed out with $15.25. Not bad….

      If i get back out there, and run into him, i think i’ll take him out for a nice dinner and get the rest of the tale…

  2. Good grief, what a way to make a living, and like you say, his resigned attitude to it makes it rather sad. But you never know — it’s probably better than being in some office or other. Very dangerous though, I’d have thought, if he’d like to have a love life!

    • Doing some google searching, this guy can make a few hundred dollars for a few hours work and once made $1,700 in a night. There may be several of these guys out there… If he had been stoned, fucked up, or obviously deranged, it wouldn’t have hit me as quite this sad. Hoping it’s a temporary gig until he gets something better….

  3. Wow. Good for you for giving him the money. As for those bastards who took their shots at him, I can’t imagine being that callous toward an obviously desperate human being. Even being drunk is no excuse because it probably just enhanced their real personalities. A drunken asshole is probably also an asshole when sober, too. Yikes.

    • Agreed…. He is functioning as an entertainer. As sad as that is, i’m more saddened that there are people who will pay money to kick him in the jewels…. and believe me, there are a surprising number of videos posted of people doing just that. i’ll never get it…

  4. I put this in the same category of “entertainment” as dwarf tossing. Sick. I’m sad that he’s that numb, but I’ve been there. Just lucky I never had to make my living in those times with getting punched in the boobs or doing porn, I guess.

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