Letter to copycat T.J. Howell

Hello T.J,

Thanks for your reply. You wrote not being able to help.
I’m convinced you are able, but simply not willing. Which is your good right.
But if all jugglers and unicyclist’s would be like that,
what kind of juggler or unicyclist would you be?

You talk about unique talents, and tough tricks. But unicycling on ice…
Rudy Horn was offered a contract to do so before you even were born:

(also notice his willingness to share technical stuff)

I have the slight feeling you are afraid of being copied.
My experience of artists that are afraid of being copied are copieng themself.

Again I realize you have right to keep your information undisclosed, but I think
it’s odd in combination with your “T.J. the D.J. Circus Performing Clinic”
projects, where you teach people.
Watching that page http://www.tjhowell.com/tjthedj.htm
I noticed a weird change of writing style compare to the rest of your site…
If you truly are that “unique”, “talented” and “inventive”, then why did you
copy-pasted the FAQ from this page: http://cirqueamongus.com/faq_cd.php?

You copied somebodies else’s work without any single adaption!
And apparently you make money with a -to me obviously- stolen format;
is that your definition of “unique talents” or “inventive”?


Full correspondence and cached url’s here.

I don’t get his reasoning for not helping you out. Maybe he lost the tyre. And his memory of it’s design. Or not.

He still is doing shows with it. Read our earlier correspondence.

Ah, reading the blog makes the rest of this more sensible. Sounds like T.J. doesn’t want to help you with a tire design, because he doesn’t want to make it easier for upstarts to compete with him. He doesn’t know you, but probably has some idea of the costs involved in manufacturing a custom, specialty tire.

Was there someplace where he claimed to invent the idea of unicycling on ice? All I saw was something about how he “invented” the ice tires he uses. If he makes them himself (or has them special-made) this is acceptable wording to me, for someone in his business. He does not claim to have invented ice tires, and I’m sure he’s well aware of Rudy Horn and the many other ice unicyclists who came before him.

It does look like he’s guilty of plagarism on lifting the copy from Cirque Amongus. Unless he had permission. He and Teresa have known each other since 1983.

Couldn’t you just take a knobbly 20" tire:

Drill the knobs from the outside, then screw some screws in from the inside, ducktape the inside of the tire to avoid your tube getting destroyed by the small bits of metal inside of the tire and voila?

Or just put some sand on ice and voila.