Coming, Ready or Not!

Tomorrow lunchtime, Gary, Zach and I are flying out to join Ethan and Jack on the circus tour. We’ll have three days to ‘integrate’ with them, whilst they’ll be performing the existing routines with Karen and Clare, our firebrand fire-eating girls who’ll then leave.

Apparently, we shall have new costumes – all in shiny silver like the jeans this guy is wearing (he’s a bit un-muscular for an acrobat, but you’ll get the idea)…


Ours end between the ankle and the knee – no tops or shoes, of course: that’ll be for the initial tumbling etc. and then, for the ‘tougher’ stuff, off they will come to reveal silver speedos (effectively) so that our poor little bodies get the full effect of the nails, glass, swords and whatever in the later parts of the performance! Perhaps I should be grateful that the designer didn’t come up with one of these:


…that’s the British actor Bobby Norris showing off his latest creation on a Spanish island beach – the ‘ball bag’. Prior to that, he displayed the one-sided speedo… hmmm! What next, I wonder… separate accessories for each item inside the bag, perhaps.

Cue shot of acrobats on the same Mediterranean island (Sam and another Jack) doing levers – I love levers:


The deal with the silver kit is that it picks up and reflects lights, which can be changed for dramatic effect as the show progresses. Good lighting, even reflecting just from a lightly-oiled body, can produce some dramatic effects, highlighting the muscle tone…

red in blue

side light blue


We’re pretty clear now on how it will work for us. Two appearances, one in each half. First up, tumbling and adagio balance with all five of us, moving on to aerial work – Ethan with Jack, Zach with me: later (maybe, the teeterboard will be added on – we’ll see. In that case, a second partnership will join in – a sword-swallowing fire-eating knife-throwing duo who open our second-act slot anyway – because the girl is apparently having fun trialling it with Ethan and our Jack and is a good light ‘flyer’.

Part 2 sees our ‘fakir’ stuff which follows naturally from the sword swallowers: our beds of nails and glass and swords on which we perform acrobatics, Cover 3 ThumbGary’s special balance on a single spear point on his stomach (see Against All Odds for more details). Ethan and Jack will be leaving ladder of swords in to the other duo from now on – they can do it with Ethan supporting Jack on his head – instead, they’ll be contributing to the alleged ‘torment’ (not at all really) by balancing on me and others as we ‘rest’ on the nails, glass and swords, building ‘stacks’ of people with the audience members choosing who goes where (this always goes down well with innocent bystanders called up to prove we’re genuine). Cover2 ThumbCover1 ThumbThe other duo will also  ‘kindly apply some torches to our feet and brush them across our bodies (as you do) and I’ve drawn the short straw to be the guy who gets the concrete block smashed on his stomach (remember, my 12yo son can do this – it’s not as tough as it seems!). Plus some spear bending against the throat and each other, thrown in for good measure. We learned that from Chinese kung-fu friends of Gary’s – see the earlier books.

The owners of this circus are very clever: they use posters which give impressions of the acts rather than actual photographs, so that changes can constantly be made as the tour moves on and performers ‘rotate’, as we are doing. Only the owning ‘family’ stays with the show continuously.

Talking of ‘clever’, time for the tenth and final fitness-related (allegedly) clue: this one is quite tough and you may need to do a little research. All I will say is read every word of the clue carefully, then do so again…

Cluedo No (10)

Miles, after gym, damaged small table (8)

First correct entry for all ten (see recent posts for the rest) to reach with appropriate contact details (mailing address) gets a free book (I’ve arranged for it to be sent out from UK publisher whilst I’m on tour). If enough people have enjoyed this, I may do it again some time.

Fear not, I’m not going to be posting a touring diary. Too boring… I’ll try and keep the fitness-related subjects as variable as I can… only the Christmas-related book advertisements will be predictable…!

So let’s go a bit more random with a few more pictures – starting with another interesting use of lighting by the photographer:

SP010812 (424)



Now another performer: and an act where getting the fingers trapped is a major hazard… and doing it in the subway is, at the very least, weird:


Appropriately undressed for computing now:


Mind you, he could lose the socks. And the shorts (as I have now, in Leon and Dane’s apartment)…


There, that’s more like it… add a little oil to catch the light…


And finally for today, a belated Hallowe’en joke:


Two boys in bed together? Whatever next!

Soon be 5 gay boys together in our tour ‘bus’. Talk to you soon from SW Canada!



About tony

Born Northampton UK
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