One thing you can expect to see a gondolier doing in Venice besides rowing (and appreciating good wine), is fishing for customers. You'll see them at quaysides and bridges, sometimes in campos too. This gondolier was stationed at the base of the bridege there in Campo San Moisè, chatting with folks as they passed by. The whole time I was there he worked to get people interested but to no avail. Finally he got tired of it and headed for a chair.
As he left the stairs, I think he muttered something along the lines of "Aw, to heck with it" (but probably not using those exact words).