Edit Blog Post
Published: February 7th 2018
“Did you say juggler?”
“Yes, I'm a juggler.” His white teeth dazzled.
I raised my eyebrows, still not believing this young man sitting next to me on the bus from Kanchipuram. He had been sitting for about 20 minutes before he spoke to me, about the time I decided I wanted to say something to him. Surely he read my mind.
But a juggler? Oh my.
This is India, where nearly every young person studies one of several topics at University: engineering, IT, finance, or medicine.
“Do you have any videos to show me?” He smoothed his dark hair, widened his eyes, and searched his mobile. And there he was—juggling balls, clubs, sticks, torches of fire, sometimes while riding a unicycle, beaming that smile, his handsome face commanding the attention that he relished.
He was good. Not only good. He loves juggling.
Prashanth is his name. “Speed Juggler/Entertainer,” and “World Record Holder, Television Fame” says his card.
“If you’re having a party, I can entertain.” I’m sure he can.
Juggling is his hobby, he said, and he’s trying to turn it into his profession. At age 24, he has
a Master’s degree in mechanical engineering, and even worked at a regular daily job, which did not suit him.
Because his passion is juggling.
At age 15, he was bored with school, and so gathered online videos, and practiced and practiced. He performed for his friends and family. He performed at bus stands, and heard the people clap, and he loved it. He didn’t ask for money from bystanders, he just wanted the applause.
At first his parents scolded him for his foolishness. His mother is a housewife, his father a teacher, and they wanted him to follow the traditional path for nearly every ambitious young student in India.
But he was miserable when he didn’t juggle. Neighbors and friends would tell his parents about the skills they had seen him perform. They finally realized that juggling was his calling and now support him in his unique journey.
“I like to entertain people,” he said.
He removed three orange balls from the bag at his feet and started juggling next to me in the bus seat. He chomped at the balls,—demonstrating one of his acts where he bites the apples while
he tosses them about.
“This year I can juggle five balls. Next year it will be six, then the next seven, and so on. I’m going to keep improving.”
And of course we became Facebook friends and exchanged email addresses, right then and there, during that 90-minute bus journey.
I told him I would write a blog about him. He told me to contact him next time I visit the area.
Maybe I’ll catch a performance. Or see him on television. That’s quite possible—because he will be competing in “India’s Got Talent” in two months. I advised him to keep his performance lively, and do something totally unexpected by the audience.
A baby? Yeah, juggle a baby.
He’d already thought of that…and figured out how he could do it, passing the baby back and forth in his arms while the balls fly.
That’s a show I want to see!
Tot: 0.071s; Tpl: 0.024s; cc: 15; qc: 74; dbt: 0.0159s; 1; m:saturn w:www (184.108.40.206); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.5mb