MONDO recap by juggling fool

I’ve been a juggling fiend. Friday: at least two hours of unicycle hockey, split up into the “good” and “peewee” teams. There were so many people there that I didn’t make the “good” cut, and consequently scored about 5 or 6 times against players who were generally younger than I’d care to admit.

Saturday: The bulk of the festival here… Unfortunately, I’d worn myself out playing uni-hockey the night before, and then combat for a few hours right after getting there. I got a second wind about the time I had to sit down and watch to see if any of my raffle tickets were called. They weren’t.

Saturday night: The mondo show has continued to improve in caliber and quality under its current artistic direction. I think this was the third year in a row we’ve sold out that 500 seat theater. [I wasted more than a few minutes here trying to look up the word for foot juggling… I think it starts with a p, as in it shares the same prefix as podiatrist.] Anyway, it was a great show, and there was much juggling afterwards (until the gym closed at two AM.)

Sunday: I showed up to the festival, and didn’t practice 1 trick the ENTIRE time I was there. I played about two more hours of hockey, and then volley club until they kicked us out at 5:00. I hadn’t played volley club since ren fest, and it was fun as hell.

Of course, yesterday we went to monday night juggling practice… low attendance for some reason… (I’m guessing people were worn out, those wusses!) My sister called me to tell me about how many new bruises she had after the weekend. (At least ten big ones, apparently.) Unicycling does that, especially when you’re practicing for level 8, as she was all weekend. (For those who really care, I passed level 3 a few weeks ago. I’d been stuck on it for about a year–I couldn’t go over the board.) Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that she was in the show… I got a fair amount of comments afterward about how good she is.

Probably the most vindicating moment of the weekend was when (late Sat night) I was hanging out with a group of people including this guy Sam. Sam is not at all a bad juggler… pretty good in fact, and he regularly cleans house at combat. I was unicycling, and he said something along the lines of “You’re better than me at everything I do!” Now, this was obviously a false statement, but he was sincere (mostly in coveting my unicycle skills, I’m sure), and anyway it felt good to hear. I have been doing this juggling crap for something like 10 years now (7 or 8 with any seriousness), so I should be better than some people, damnit!

PS, Note: this is not the aforementioned meta-juggling post that I’d meant to write and hinted about a few weeks ago. I will write that someday… someday.

book update

Prey was just OK. It got a little less believable at the end. It was fun, and suspenseful, but not especially the kind of thing I like to read. It was to gut wrenchingly edge-of-your-seat. Strangely enough, I don’t go in for that kind of thing, really.

If all goes well, I’ll be getting a second book to read by Michael Marshal Smith today. I was pretty impressed to see the Mpls. Library has three or four of his books at the downtown location. (I ordered Only Forward from a while back, and it was pretty good, nothing terribly special, but well worth reading.)


hours and hours into it
eyeballs screwed in their sockets
drilling those lines
down to their finest word dust
participles and particulars
alliteration and slam
banging in the back seat of
the bookmobile
structured poetry sweating
out our backs and legs

punctuation or not?
singular or plural?
first or third person?
that or this? in or on?
on and on, point after point
finessing words into weapons or
love handles
gripping the poem
by its horns
wrangling it
into this form I’ve arbitrarily chosen
sonnet or villanelle, haiku or triad

and I’m pumping the lines like a fireman
beating at them like a blacksmith
I’ve twisted them and
bent them all out of shape
structure and form are out the window
and still
these words —
they will only spell you.


Woah, I can’t believe I almost forgot to mention that MONDO Jugglefest is this weekend. That’s where I’ll be from friday after work till sunday late afternoon. I’m going to spend a bit of time very soon and whip up some forms for the website.

devil’s in the details: and here they are

I’m finally reading Michael Crichton’s Prey. I’m almost done with it, so maybe I’ll say more when I know how it ends. (It’s pretty good so far, but too much like an action movie. His exposition is too dry, and the action too intense. I want more stuff that’s somewhere in the middle, I guess. Actually, I take it back… only some of the exposition is dry… some of it is quite interesting. I have a feeling I’m going to be disappointed that he doesn’t bring up more of the topics I want him to bring up, but I’ll save that pronouncement for when I’m finished.)

My video game addiction has reached a new high (low?) with Kingdom Hearts. I played it for about 9 hours last Sunday, and fifteen hours over the weekend total. At one point, after I’d been playing for at least 5 hours straight, I realized that my index finger was going numb in the tip. I thought for awhile last night I had “burned out” on it, until I decided to quit playing the level I was on (the whale that swallows Pinocchio), and go to another one (where you get to play as the little mermaid)… that significantly revived my interest in the game, and I played for another couple of hours.

I also watched episodes 4 and 5 of Cosmos last night. Nate is out of town for a week, (on his yearly jaunt to steamboat) and absolved me of the requisite that I watch them with him, so I’ll be plowing through them as I desire to do so. They’re absolutely fascinating, and I can see why they were so popular.

After episode 4, I looked up scale models of the solar system (because I immediately wanted to build one), and I found a whole list of them over on the Gainesville Solar Walk website, and another page with a huge list of related links on it.

mountain claiming

Design and definition —
rhyme lacks ambition.
Diddling in wordplay,
lounging on letters,
lackluster limericks
taunting their betters.

Poets whose words
black and filibuster,
line stuffy magazines
like cotton-lined coffers.

Art without structure —
taste without buffer.
Mouths drool phrases,
and sticky words dangle.
Lips giving twist
to some infinite angle.

Poets whose tongues
swollen asunder
fracturing phrases
like �ya know� teenie-boppers.

[poem unfinished or instantly-abandoned]

albino afternoon

snow after snow
flakes like shotgun shots on my windshield
wipers making cricket noises
harmonizing with the dashboard rattle
snake swerving through the city streets
padded like fuzzy patchwork blankets
warm and white