The warning on fire juggling equipment websites read "fire juggling should only be attempted by a professional juggler."

If you've ever watched a juggler in action, you’ve probably done what I've done - wonder what it is that makes something that looks so simple so hard for the average person to do.

I've seen professional jugglers at the circus as a child and on TV as an adult. They all pretty much start off the same way - by standing next to a row of items they intend to juggle and picking the items off of the row one by one. The first two items they toss into the air to get their rhythm going make the action look deceptively simple. And while you're watching, they smoothly snatch another item from the pile and add it to the ones they are already circulating from hand to hand and into the air.

The next thing you know, they've got four items in the circuit - two in the air, with the other two in their hands. This, you figure, you could probably do as well, if you had time to practice a bit. It isn't until they begin juggling five or six items that you have to admit that this guy knows what he is doing.

If you watch him while he's juggling, you will see, even if he is plying his audience with a steady line of patter, that his eyes are intent on the trajectory and the height of the balls in the air.

Imagine these items are torches, the kind you set on fire.

When you see a juggler begin to light his juggling torches, any idea you may have had of your prowess matching the juggler's skills one day vanishes. At that point, you figure the juggler has lost his mind – he cannot possibly be planning to juggle torches that are actually flaming.

The most amazing act I've ever seen involved juggling lit torches.

President Obama is a fire juggler.

In some ways, he is making the balancing act he's maintaining as his administration juggles decision making on the economy, healthcare, the banking bailout, the environment, education and America’s infrastructure look too easy. Most of us, aware of our own limitations, figure we would be sweating bullets if we tried to take on any three of these at once.

The critics, who are legion, are not professional jugglers. They are a lot like you and me - the kind of people who would be afraid of even tossing lit torches into the air. President Obama may not be one yet either, but he seems to be willing, like has has in all the other endeavors he's committed to accomplishing in his life, to be giving it his undivided attention.





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