Mills Mess Files
Walter is a four ball, arm-crossing 1-up 2-up multiplex trick with serious pizzazz. It looks like all the balls are being thrown up at the same time, then miraculously caught with enough control to repeat it. Walter takes a lot of work to learn, though:
Start with two balls in your RH, arms crossed R over L.
Iíll need to distinguish where each ball is being held in your hand, so Iíll refer to the ball held by your thumb and first two fingers as the "thumb ball." Iíll call the other one the "pinky ball".
1) Throw the two balls straight up in a stacked multiplex ("stacked" means the balls are vertically aligned. This is contrasted with a "split" multiplex, where they go up side by side).
2) Uncross your arms, and start to cross them the other way. As your LH moves over your RH, grab the lower of the stacked balls with your LH.
3) Catch the falling ball in an under-the-arm position in your RH.
Practice this throw and catch on both sides.
Now weíll add a third ball to the mix. Start with two balls in your RH and one in your LH, arms crossed R over L.
1) Simultaneously throw a stacked multiplex from your RH and an under-the-arm straight-up throw with your LH. The LH ball should go as high as the top multiplex ball.
2) Uncross your arms, and start to cross them L over R. As your LH moves over your RH, grab the lower of the stacked balls with your LH and hold it as the pinky ball.
3) When your arms are crossed, simultaneously catch the balls coming down. One lands as an under-the-arm RH catch, the other as an over-the-arm LH catch in thumb position.
Now do it on the other side. Itís a crossed-arm simultaneous multiplex throw (quite a mouthful!). Then you uncross and recross your arms, snatching one of the multiplexed balls in the process, and make a crossed-arm simultaneous multiplex catch.
The effect is that every throw two balls are going up and down, while the third ball has a short commute under the other balls and going to the other side.
If you can handle Version 0.5, youíre ready to step it up a notch. Now weíll be working with all four balls you need to juggle Walter.
Start with two balls in each hand, arms crossed R over L.
1) Juggle 2-in-1 hand in columns with your LH. When youíre ready,
2) Simultaneously throw the outside 2-in-1 hand ball (the one on the far right) from your LH and the multiplex from your RH. As you start to uncross your hands,
3) Catch the falling 2-in-1 hand ball in your RH. Then start to cross your arms L over R and grab the lower of the stacked balls with your LH.
4) Finish crossing your arms, then throw the ball in your RH as a 2-in-1 hand throw going to the inside of the remaining multiplex ball.
5) Simultaneously catch the falling multiplex ball in your RH and the 2-in-1 hand ball in your LH, holding it as the thumb ball.
6) Begin 2-in-1 hand in columns with your RH by throwing the ball you just caught to the outside of ball you just threw.
Now you can juggle 2-in-1 hand until your pattern stabilizes. When youíre ready, you can do it on the other side:
1) Simultaneously throw the outside 2-in-1 hand ball with your RH and the stacked multiplex with your LH. Uncross your hands, and in the process
2) Catch in your LH the 2-in-1 hand ball coming down. Then as you cross your hands R over L, grab the lower of the two multiplexed balls in your RH and hold it as the pinky ball. 3) When your arms are crossed, throw the ball in your LH as a 2-in-1 hand throw going to the inside of the falling multiplex ball.
4) Simultaneously catch the falling multiplex ball in your LH, and the 2-in-1 hand ball in your RH (holding it as the pinky ball, since you already have a ball in your RH).
5) Start 2-in-1 hand in columns with your LH. You do that by throwing the ball in your LH to the outside of the ball in the air. Continue 2-in-1 hand like that until you want to do the throw again.
Itís a tricky process. Three balls go up at the same time, and itís hard to not only keep track of them all, but to also make them separated enough that you can throw a ball to the inside, but close enough that you can catch them with your arms crossed.
Once you get it, you only have one slight modification to make. Itís very easy to describe; unfortunately itís a little harder to do:
1) Do Version 1.0, but skip the last step on each side.
That means donít go into 2-in-1 hand at all. You throw a 2-in-1 hand ball to the inside, make the simultaneous catch, and then start your simultaneous throw again.
The multiplex catches make Walter a challenge, and if you need a visual you can watch the video of it. On the other hand, the difficulty of Walter pays off with the stunning effect it gives, and once you have it, youíre equipped to make up all kinds of variations.