Tuesday, April 28, 2015

She flies through the air with the greatest of ease

Some kids play soccer or lacrosse or basketball. But in Peru, Indiana, children have another choice. They can join the circus. Each spring, 200 students (mostly girls) practice four days a week, four hours a day, for six months before a week of performances in July. Circus families must forgo summer vacation. So why work so hard? "Tiffany Rush, 18, is one of half-a-dozen flying trapeze performers. She says, "It's true you give up everything, but you....fly."

The few boys who perform are often "fly-catchers," hefty guys who powder their hands and hang upside down from a swing to catch female trapeze fliers. This is usually one of last performances each day. Trainers far below on the floor use whistles to signal when the flier and the fly-catcher should start swinging, some distance apart. We all know there's a net to catch anyone who falls, but as they swing back and forth, faster and faster, everyone prays he'll catch her wrists. Finally the whistle blows. She takes one final swing, releases the bar, twists in mid-air and reaches out hopefully. More often than not, he catches her, and the audience goes wild!! After all, these are just local kids who mow lawns and work at McDonalds. If you'd like to see them perform, here's the link. Opt for full-screen, and turn the sound up loud.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WjEj6uPRocw

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