Nick Weber

Nick Weber
Milwaukee, Wisconsin,
September 18
Once: Jesuit Priest, Circus Producer, Clown, Actor, High School Performing Arts Teacher. Currently: Sometime connector of certain Dots...........(er, Gifts)


Nick Weber's Links
JULY 16, 2010 7:19AM

Circus Lady, Jody Ellis

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[The hula hoops are about to enter an already difficult act.  Jody Ellis, 1986-87]


Every circus needs a lady like Jody Ellis.  She was a performer and she came to realize she was a citizen in a tiny interdependent world of performers. Eleven women participated at oRead full post »

JULY 15, 2010 7:46AM

Tears, Circus Clowns, Memories

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[With Jennifer Edgerton, Carson and Barnes Circus, 1996]


There is a type of stare you learn to recognize when you are a clown and someone in a group you are entertaining is paying too close attention, especially to your eyes.  You instantly realize they are trying to penetra/Read full post »

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[The value of a circus?  Unmitigated attention even on the playground.]


From the time I first met the Jesuits, I knew that words held power.  At the age of thirteen I had encountered a bunch of guys who were teachers so given to their enthusiasm that I easily fell/Read full post »

JULY 13, 2010 7:07AM

Luggage for China


[Superb circus artistry. But before learning to pick up the napkin from the wire with his teeth, he had to learn his rigging.  Ten pieces of it traveled inside the major separating tube underneath him.  Now if I could just get my gear for China to compress.  Joe Reic… Read full post »

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[Mitch Kincannon, workman, costumer, house manager, booking agent, ombudsman.  Royal Lichtenstein Circus 1989]

His first night in California saw Mitch Kincannon at a performance of  Circus Vargas, but he was in the state because he had joined the Royal Lichtenstein Circus.&nbsRead full post »

JULY 9, 2010 7:07AM

Whether Bad Weather Is All Bad

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[Just right of center, notice the plastic sheeting over the band organ.  There was a promise of a shower in West Palm Beach.  February, 1985]


Two days ago I walked to the grocery store and after checkout had to wait out a sudden downpour.  Far more than an afternoo/Read full post »

JULY 8, 2010 8:01AM

Monumental Warming

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[Hardly dominating its topography as prominently as its forebears do the history of literature, the reconstructed Globe Theater has to be about as warm and living as a monument can get. Southward, 2001]

No matter how hot the weather is, monuments are cold.  Photographic art can ren/Read full post »

JULY 7, 2010 7:18AM


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[Jennie Madrigal, house manager for the Royal Lichtenstein Circus, 1990. See the earpiece?  She's not listening to Chopin--or even her beloved Denver Broncos.  It's how she stayed in contact with our backyard.]


He’s real!  He’s alive on the inside: a ge/Read full post »

JULY 6, 2010 7:05AM

Food Gathering

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Not every retail clerk has to be nice and cheerful right after dismounting from a trapeze 25' in the air!  Eric Mason in the "floss joint" 1991]


It isn’t the money you’re spending; it’s not even the waiting.  It’s waiting to spend money when you/Read full post »

JULY 5, 2010 7:33AM

Petting Pachyderms


[A photo subject not half as curious as h… Read full post »

JULY 2, 2010 6:55AM

Shakespeare and Outages

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[Using adversity indeed: the aerial stratijacket release. Eric Wilcox, 1983]


Last Tuesday morning at around 7a.m., I was working at my computer when an intense explosion right outside my window surged my apartment lights and doused both them and the computer.  Electrical fai/Read full post »

JULY 1, 2010 7:00AM

Magic Boxes Vs. Magic Spells

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[No slick boxes or sexy girl.  That day it was the magic of a high school kid waiting to find his missing marked quarter inside a ball of yarn.   Spring, 1983.]


Even the magicians of the stage, that special niche of variety performers, have to work spellsRead full post »

JUNE 30, 2010 7:34AM

The Scare

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[A scare.  The breakaway in Jens Larson's handbalancing act. You have worried yourself into a scare as he pressed into a perfect handstand atop the precarious blocks.  But the deliberate dislodge and drop to the table top was a startling finish.]


Confession time. Read full post »

JUNE 29, 2010 7:05AM



[Outside Brent Dewitt's magnificent sideshow at the Racine County Fair, 2009--Photo, Orlene Gentile]


His was hardly the power of the Apocalyptic Four Horsemen.  In fact his electrical power came from only half a horse: a small generator plant in the back of his dinged up SUV/Read full post »

JUNE 28, 2010 7:48AM




There are sounds that move us profoundly no matter how frequently we hear them.  The great orchestral themes are elaborate examples but there are simpler ones that we forget about until they catch us off guard, and then it is too late to brace our emotions.  Precisely what weRead full post »

JUNE 25, 2010 7:35AM

Remind Me

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[Are there more difficult rola bola tricks? You betcha. Saw one last week (in Wisconsin, not Alaska).  Will I ever see anyone remove that bottle and replace it with as much charm as Joe Reichlin did in 1990?  Probably not. Will I ever know that for sure?  No. That's what… Read full post »

JUNE 24, 2010 7:10AM

Lazier Spam

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[You may have seen the above feline diagram if you pay attention to comments posted on this blog.  I haven't a clue how to forestall its unpredictable appearances, all of which are totally unrelated to the postings.]

You can probably encounter them anywhere there are tourists. Read full post »

JUNE 23, 2010 7:20AM

Big Mama

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[From L., Alex Cemal hails from the Yucatan, I come from California, Marco lives in Vera Cruz.  The photographer couldn't resist including a horse's rear end far right.  We are all entering for the spec which is centered on the show's first Chinese acrobats.  Carson and B… Read full post »

JUNE 22, 2010 6:44AM

Circus Clowns and Party Clowns

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[Yes, Lou Jacobs had one of the most arresting auguste faces in history. But the tension of the clown drama is in his right hand and he is humble and shrewd enough to know it.]

I was recently gifted with the opportunity to watch a rather inept clown in aRead full post »

JUNE 21, 2010 7:22AM

Bureau Bait

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[John Teeples nails the chair trick at Lincoln Center, 1985]

“Nick, there’s an FBI agent here who would like to speak with you.”

I knew the layout of our lobby in the administration building at the Jesuit Novitiate.  The guy was overhearing one end of this convers/Read full post »

JUNE 18, 2010 7:36AM

Funereal Fluff

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[The elder Nick is on the right.  Neither of us would be caught dead at either of our funerals.]

The old saw that a clown is someone crying on the inside lost its teeth long ago.   Sure greasepaint can cover pain. Sure clowns cry;  they’re human.  But/Read full post »

JUNE 17, 2010 7:37AM

Fields and Open Spaces

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[Another day begins on another field.  Carson and Barnes Circus 1997]

All you really needed was a field next to a viable roadway and near some township.  One afternoon, a guy with a couple of stakes, a chain and some surveyor’s flags would  take some mysterious meas/… Read full post »

JUNE 16, 2010 7:31AM

Happy Trails

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[Carlo and Orlene Gentile are circus performer friends who journeyed to inland China to study circus arts.  They are the latest examples of how that rich culture continues to gift my life.]

Certainly pandas trump carp and rivers trump thruways.  Temples trump towersRead full post »

JUNE 15, 2010 7:50AM

Book Bargains

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[A relic left behind in a used copy of Romeo and Juliet to be discovered by the new owner.]

Just over a year ago I was sitting in a camp on the Serengeti plain where a companion traveler was reading one of the twenty books she’d brought with her.  She/Read full post »

JUNE 14, 2010 7:39AM

Wired Wonders and Mirrored Marvels

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[Mitch Kincannon and I prepare to lock the lid of a 100 gallon steel milkcan filled with water and Kevin Duggan.  Kevin, surrounded by spectators would then dematerialize, pass through the wall of the tank, and rematerialize in less than two minutes. 1976-'77.]

A very handy dialoguRead full post »