Day 323: NerdSport

Considering all my talk of funneling Busch Lights in the back of a Subaru Brat on my way to judge a wet t-shirt contest at Monsters Of Rock, I’m sure it’s confusing that I also spent a short time in my high school’s juggling club. Hey, even dudes with mullets struggle to find themselves sometimes. That’s just an assumption. I never had the absent father and love of chewing tobacco needed to grow two separate haircuts at the same time.

I went through many disparate phases in high school, each just a futile attempt to trick any girl named Leah, Lori, or Beth into ignoring my acne. Nothing worked: Trench coats, a suite of different colored Umbros, clove cigarettes, parachute pants, James Taylor tickets, masks – it was hopeless. One year I decided to embrace my face by joining a small, tight-knit group of socially challenged academic all-stars. Together we were an army of geekdom that generated a balmy breeze by from all the nearby vaginas slamming their shutters.

We called ourselves “The Delaware Hayes Juggling Club” because we wanted zero ambiguity. Our lone goal was to emasculate ourselves through engaging in wizardly feats of dexterity. There were about 8 of us who met after school with the cool science teacher; the kind you see in movies who attempt to motivate their class by blowing shit up, only to receive blank stares from gum chewing cheerleaders. After a frustrating day like that, who doesn’t want a group of gawky 14 year old boys with Robert Smith obsessions throwing bowling pins at their face?

A few of the members received the illustrious golden jester hat by juggling 5 clubs. The rest of us noticed that 4 balls (which is no small feat) was more than enough to impress our parents’ friends on Saturday nights. “Gee, you’d think your son would be out with his friends tonight, but I guess it’s nice that he would rather stay in and juggle for us. Oh, and look at those turquoise shoes he’s wearing! My oh my.”

Unfortunately, it’s not an ability you can unlearn. Even amnesiacs sometimes wake from a coma confused and frightened that they still know how to juggle. With that comes a nagging itch to juggle anything round and in sets of 3 or 4. When you’re 14 years old people are sometimes impressed with your ability to keep 3 balls in the air. At 39, that same skill is usually met with, “Umm, why are you juggling?”

Now with two small kids around all the time, I have a new audience. So far they haven’t been all that impressed. Either they don’t understand how incredibly difficult it is, or they’re already cooler than I ever was.

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Mari says:

Mr Tingley?

Jason Good says:

No. And I can't believe I forget his name. But he was also a biology teacher

Mari says:

Mr Austin?

Mari says:

NOT Mr. Hohman.

Mari says:

Mr Nesselroad?

adequatemom says:

I can juggle too … three balls, with a couple of tricks. I think kids are nonplussed by juggling because, as you say, they have no idea how hard it is. They haven't figured out gravity yet. An amusing corollary to this is that kids sometimes think it's something magic that the balls themselves do … so they will ask to try it. They throw all the balls and then just stand there, waiting for them to fly into amazing patterns. Hee!

SuperBonBon says:

My husband juggles for our toddler and she thinks it's great. She tries to imitate him by throwing the balls at us.

Raizy says:

My dad still juggle for the kids. i remember loving the show as a child. He even juggled at my wedding.

Alicia Scheffer says:

Not that the endorsement of a nerd queen is gonna help your case any, but I thought the jugglers were hot.

orange says:

I know exactly what you mean. I can juggle 3 balls and my 18 month old just stares until I drop one, then he laughs, picks it up, and runs away with it.

Noah Cowan says:

Hey, I wore turquoise canvas All Stars. The truth hurts Jason. It really hurts.

Proud Member, Delaware Hayes Juggling Club

Jason Good says:

You and I and Matt Carleton all had them. A.T made me get them. Ha

Noah Cowan says:

Now that I think about it, I think I copied Matt.

I could never master juggling..I tried as a child, and tried again this summer. 2 objects is about as far as I got. Thankfully I can juggle more objects in life…;-)