We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Medals

Millions watch the Olympics, their eyes Krazy-glued to the television screen. They stare at the athletes’ bodies, sculpted from rock and honed by years of training. They cheer them on, choosing strangers to overcome other strangers based on their nationalities, their youthful looks. They adorn the winners with shiny, rust-proof baubles that will one day fetch a fair price on …

Notes and queries and a case full of clubs: Concepts

As has hopefully become clear over the course of my writings here, it is vitally important to me to tie conceptual ideas (theory) to actual physical work (practice). This link from theory to practice is easy to demonstrate in a workshop or classroom situation, but somewhat harder to visualise when writing about the process. I have already discussed factors of …

Rubber, Glue and Whatnot

On a grade-school playground, next to the metal-scaled tornado slide, a little girl with pigtails swaying in the limp breeze says to a bully boy two years older and six inches taller, “You’re mean! You’re a meaning mean face, and I hate you!” The bully, used to such piercing taunts, smiles and replies, “I’m rubber and you’re glue, whatever you …

Juggling is Boring [ Tales of The Juggler ]

The Juggler was not born The Juggler. He was born uncoordinated, a slobbering ball of skin and muscle and bones. Then he grew, mostly up, and one day opened his eyes to find things that amazed him. Over the years he found many such wonders: fireworks, redwoods, home runs, the smile of a pretty girl, the cloudless night sky. But …

Be Funnier with Scotty Meltzer: Thou Shalt Not Steal

As I wrote in my first column, Comedy Darwinism, whenever I’ve asked any group of comedy jugglers or comedy magicians where their jokes come from, most answer: “It was something that happened while I was onstage.” Almost no one says: “I stole it from someone else’s show.” And yet, if you watch most shows, and I’m definitely including my own …

Notes and queries and a case full of clubs: Subjugation

As jugglers it seems to make clear and perfect sense to define ourselves based on our props: on tricks, on whirling orbits and topological paths, and perhaps also through our connection to the juggling community and the wider, but related, communities of other circus arts. Sometimes, and if moving away from the basic facts of juggling to those of performance …

How I Got This Way

My biggest stroke of luck was to grow up a short distance from a magic club called The Long Beach Mystics. The Long Beach (largest non-county seat city in the U.S!) that my parents grew up in was sometimes called “The Des Moines of the west coast” because of its lack of what we now call “diversity.” By the time …

The juggling scene here in Brazil!

Brazil is a huge country, with nearly 200 million people and more than 8.4 million square kilometers. Unfortunately, we don’t have as many jugglers as the United States or Europe. While juggling is starting to grow here, we don’t have any schools that focus only on juggling (at least not that I know of). But we do have a lot …

Notes and queries and a case full of clubs: Words of the Week

My last article took one particular theme (efficiency) and explored it as fully as I could. I often tend to fixate on one particular aspect of juggling at a time, and then try to understand and clarify my thoughts and beliefs on said aspect. Sometimes that clarification takes place in a notebook, sometimes in my head, and sometimes in an …