When I first heard of EC Stilson‘s idea for a blogfest I thought it was a great one, because I’ve been on a mission to put out good stuff amongst the bad. But it was hard to think of what to write. I was worried I’d have one of those Academy Award moments and forget to thank someone very dear. I’ve been so surprised lately and grateful: my folks have put money in my account when I had less than a dollar and they didn’t know it, I got an amazing thank you note from an old friend on my birthday when my friends that lived near me forgot, and a client/friend of mine sent some money on paypal because they thought I had really worked hard on their website (and I think they also knew I needed the money.)
But then it occurred to me that with all of the bloggers and their different styles, those stories aren’t quite the Amusingz style. So here is my contribution to the Random Acts of Kindness.
I’ve been doing magic since I was ten years old and have done it professionally for about 25 years. I have tons of stories to fill a book, most of them because of the odd characters or the “kids say the darndest thing” moments. And there’s been some real sweet moments as well.
Having made somewhere in the vicinity of 120, 000 balloon sculptures (yes I just did the math and WTF?) I can tell you that it’s not an easy gig. And I don’t just mean the blowing up of the balloons, which of course all purists will tell you should be done with the mouth and pumps are for wussies. The worst is the summer, because humidity and grass are the natural enemies of balloons. One because of the whole “heat expands” and then you’re in the car air conditioning science and the other because those little tiny blades are surprisingly sharp to the latex. And as much as you tell kids that fact, even illustrating it with touch and encouraging them to “feel,” they are dropped and popped and need to be replaced NOW. So let me tell you that on a hot August day in the city of Chicago, surrounded by twenty four year olds, that don’t understand the concept of a line or a turn, yelling what color and kind of animal they want, one can lose their patience and their sanity.
On one such day, actually the third party of the day, when all the moms chose to have the parties outside because the idea of letting everyone be cool in the air conditioning was no trade-off for cleaning they would have to do with say, a sponge and a couple of towels, I was rescued by an angel.
She was about two and half years old, with that curly hair that only little girls have and she was wearing overalls which I find absolutely adorable on little kids. As my fingers twisted, my eyes turned and found her standing there, finger curled fish-hook style into her mouth, twisting gently from her pelvis from side to side and holding a cold bottle of water. Her mom, who had been her seat cushion for the show, whispered “go ahead, give it to him.” She stood there. I smiled. She walked over and handed me the water and I said thank you. Even though there were kids waiting in line and she was the little sister of one of the other kids, I asked her what kind of balloon she wanted. She didn’t say anything, but turned and ran to the back of the line.
As the kids got their balloons and I got to make hers she ran off and the mom smiled and I said “thanks for rescuing me, I really needed that water.” She said “Oh no, that was all her. She said ‘Mommy he must be thirsty from blowing up all those balloons and talking so much’ and went to get you the water.”
Break your heart moment although when it swells that much it’s indestructible.