Thursday, March 8, 2007

Juggling in the airport between flights

I just got back from my first solo airplane trip in years. One thing I enjoyed was taking some of my juggling equipment and juggling in the airport between flights. Of course I know I'm showing off when I do this. But it's a great way to kill time without using up all of your
reading material. :) And a benefit that I didn't expect is that I feltgreat afterward. Rather than sitting and waiting and slowly melting into the lousy furniture, I was up and moving around. I even came up with some new tricks that I hadn't thought of before. Most of these were
minor variations which would be difficult to describe, but let's see if I can't come up with a few:

  • Working with my portable, modular devil stick, I realized I can practice balancing it on my chin, and can learn to spin it from the ends, by resting a control stick against the ball at either end. This devil stick is made from a 3-part painting pole, with foam balls attached to the ends. Those balls have 1" ridges that can be used as acontrol surface; most devil sticks don't have this. Of course, I can't actually do this yet...
  • Contact juggling tricks with two balls at once. For example, balance aball the top of each hand, with the hands held flat in front of your chest. Simulataneously roll the balls to the other side of each hand while rotating the arms at the elbows, so that you end with the balls on the palm of each hand and you're standing with hands out, palms up. I can almost do this one.
  • Twist and juggle: I can do this. I hadn't tried before: While juggling 3 balls, twist the body until you are facing backward, juggling all the time. Then return to the front. Your feet never move. Then do the other side. It's like stretching while juggling.
  • Stretching while juggling: I did several moves that involved taking long low stances with the feet wide apart, or stepping left and right while juggling. The idea was to maintain a wide pattern, sometimes so wide that I had to step from side to side to catch the throws.

I don't usually spend a lot of time with the balls or the devil stick, so having them as my only props led me to focus on them in interesting ways.