A little unicycle goes a long way

Unicycle Fencing

For the month of May, I only unicycled for a paltry 5 hours (precisely), making May very nearly a vacation from skill acquisition. And a sort of vacation from everything else, too, as I was out of state for 12 days in May on three different trips, and on another 8 days was gone from home part or most of the day. However! Despite this failure of practice quantity, I still very nearly met all of my lofty (because I’m up a little higher on a unicycle) goals!

☑ Texting while unicycling
☑ Juggling while unicycling
☑ Unicycling backwards
☐ Juggling while texting while unicycling backwards

The first, and easiest goal, that of mounting the unicycle without touching anything with a 95% success rate was met within the first day or two. Unicycling in tight circles was also met quite satisfactorily: I can often do a very nearly 180° turn! On the last day I tried juggling while unicycling, and was surprised to find that it was barely any more difficult than either juggling or unicycling on their own. With just a few minutes of attempting it, I was able to do four consecutive catches multiple times, and while standing on solid ground was only able to do 14 once, with most being in the range of seven or eight catches.

I only put a small portion of my five hours into attempting to unicycle in reverse, and despite this fact, was beginning to make very solid progress. On multiple attempts I was able to unicycle 1½ complete revolutions—or three peddlings—in reverse. The great difficulty comes in the transition from forward movement, to a brief standstill, and then backward movement. Keeping one’s balance at this point is exceedingly tricky, but I feel that a few more hours of practice would allow me to unicycle in reverse for great lengths of time, free from any difficulty of balance.

My approximate ability is shown in this video:

I am very pleased with the improvement I’ve made, almost hitting my goals in just ¼ of the desired time. Now I want to play Unicycle Hockeyand I posses the skills!

Can’t Help Falling In Love

Elvis with an ukulele

Despite your first thought, the title of this post is not describing my feelings toward the ukulele. Yes, it’s kind of fun, and it’s fairly easy to learn & play, but I don’t find it nearly as enjoyable as piano was. I rarely have an urge to play it, which has caused me to fall behind a little in my playing, with only ten hours of practice in so far. It’s definitely fun if I’m in the right mood though, and I have gotten one song fairly well memorized!

Here is my meager performance of the song with the same title as this blog post’s title:

I still have ten days left in the month, and ten hours left of practice. I’ll have to step up my game. Hopefully I’ll soon hit the point where everything becomes easier, more fluid, and more enjoyable, as happened with piano near the end of last month. To make my playing more interesting, I believe I’ll also have to add some variety—learning some picking methods, perhaps. Working on being able to do a traditional, brisk ukulele strumming rhythm would also be good for some of my songs.