Wes Kobylak, editor of this special edition "Juggler's World," was reflecting on the enormous amount of time it took him to pull the material together. Relieved that his 14-month job was sealed and delivered, he commented to me, "I don't know how you do it. Don't you ever spend time with your family?"
I realized then that the IJA is my family almost as much as Ellen, mom, dad, brothers and other blood relatives.
In that sense, the photo above represents just one of the many small IJA family reunions that occur each year. At the upper left is Robert York, comedy entertainer from Tulsa, Okla., and an active IJA member for the last eight years. York drove us a few miles from Tulsa to Bixby, Okla., to the banks of the snake creek for a pilgrimage to the home of IJA founder Roger Montandon, who stands beside him in this picture. Montandon is the man I admire as the first editor of a regular juggling journal, "The Juggler's Bulletin."
Kobylak and I, representing administrators who have helped hold the organization together for four decades, are seated in front. For 51 weeks a year the juggling family members cross paths only on infrequent occasions, keeping in touch through the magazine and rumor mill. The annual convention is an opportunity to gain inspiration from the ones we love and spend a solid, rare week sharing lives and ideas. The intensity of the experience in comparison to the daily grind - whether it be in an office or in performance - provides rich, enduring memories that sustain us for another year.
The 40th anniversary of the IJA is a convenient benchmark from which to look backwards and forwards. We view the past clearly in this issue of the magazine through the experiences of those who lived it. Our view of the future is a murky blend of the plans, hopes and dreams of all members of the IJA family committed to making the organization an even more positive force in juggling. Let Akron recharge our determination to realize a future of even greater family grandeur!
(signed) Bill Giduz