I do not know how to juggle. In this I apparently fail a classic geek test; reportedly a very large percentage of programmers can juggle.
However, I recently decided that it might be time to learn. This was spurred mainly by the days I spend at the Village Free School with the kids. The space is about half baby proofed, so I can’t exactly let Mica wander unattended, especially at her current stage (mobility: 100%; danger awareness: 10%). I end up with large blocks of time simply watching the baby, and that gets boring quickly. Boredom, as I learned long ago in school, is death to any endeavor.
What to do, though? I need something that occupies me without completely absorbing my attention and vision, so obvious things like reading, writing, and drawing are tricky. But tossing a ball, while keeping one eye on the baby? That’s proven distinctly possible.
Then I discovered (thank you, Google!) that you can make your own juggling balls, each one a simple construction of 1/2 cup of bird seed and three balloons, and the idea became irresistible. Last week I took the materials to school (with lots of extras, just in case any of the students wanted to partake as well) and sat down outside to make a few juggling balls. I briefly became immensely popular — not because there was much fascination with making the balls, but because I had balloons. Over the course of the day I must have distributed forty balloons, and the energy level of the school went up noticeably.
But now I have my juggling balls, including some extras (because I know how object attrition works around here), and am (intermittently) working on learning to use them. Perhaps by the end of the year I’ll be able to keep them in the air..?