Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Cut Off

I got no Internet anymore... Damn I need to get that fixed!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Old Time Magic.


Some June McComb for you...

And yes, check out the other hundreds of videos at

Comic Time #23

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Just A Sunday Post #30

It is kind of interesting. I CANNOT SEE THE VIDEO. I get an error message telling me it contains content that belongs to Sony Music Entertainment. That's bullshit. I do not care for the music. Just mute the damn thing, but let me watch the video. It is card stuff done by Shahin who's website seems hacked. (DO NOT CLICK THAT, TROJAN)

I don't know if he knows that this website is hacked...

Friday, December 25, 2009

Bizzaro Has A Point!

"I have met a few magicians in my life who actually don't care if they flash while performing. They do nothing to fix it nor do they change anything. At that point, they are just there for themselves and the self-gratification it gives them. Let me tell you why it's bad to flash people." [...]

Read the rest!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Rant

I hate the Holiday Season. I hate Christmas. And there is just one reason. Nothing works. Nobody has got time, shit is not getting done and everything is closed.

Really, all I want is my regular kind of thing. But no, stores are closed and I cannot buy my bread and butter. In fact I have to take that sort of stuff into consideration and buy stuff in advance. Damn that. I still expect some money from clients. But they are not to hand out the money till after Christmas. Because nobody is there during the freaking three days of Christmas. But this year is worse. the 27. is a Sunday making me wait even longer for anything. So let's assume my clients get around paying my fee on Monday. I still won't have the money on my bank account until next year.

Because near the end of the year everything slows down. It actually goes to a dead halt. All in the name of peace, love and understanding. That is a good hippie message, but shouldn't this be the message throughout the whole year...? Just saying.

And what about magic shows? During Christmas I never had a magic show. Ever. So I naturally assume that nobody does. Or just a few. And after Christmas. Same thing. Poor souls which celebrate their birthdays between Christmas and New Year. They will never have a magician perform at their day of the year. But then again that could be a good thing.

And what about my friends? They got no time, because they need to be with the families. I am alone... I could visit my family, but I learnt that staying away from them actually adds to the harmony in my family. And even if I decided to go it would be difficult, because Christmas is during the winter time.

Why the hell is Christmas during winter time? Icy roads, trains are late, overall traffic is a disaster. Couldn't there be a more convenient time? How about October?
In fact most Christmas stuff is in the stores in the beginning of October anyway.

Christmas seems to be a holiday that devours so much time and does so little. WTF... Seriously, wtf.

No that I got all of that out of my system. To those of you that do celebrate the birth of that little kid, that later died and came back as a Zombie... Merry Christmas. And for those who are offended: Happy Holidays.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Just A Sunday Post #29

Isn't it said, that, when searching YouTube for "good magic" this video comes up first?

Saturday, December 19, 2009

KORBINIAN - Pasteboard Lunatics...

Hello world.

Every now and then I have serious doubts about my profession. Most magicians base their repertoire in large parts on cards. A fact, which I find quite surprising, since nothing else looks more like tricks. Okay except glittery or shiny boxes and feather flowers, I hate feather flowers, those people should have these stupid flowers shoved up somewhere.

But back to the topic, take out a deck of cards and the people know immediately your doing tricks, not magic, if well presented it will look like magic but nevertheless people will know for sure you are a trickster, not a real magician.

I don't even want to talk about, that most people do the same tricks, like the Ambitious Card... I just want to ask why everyone is just doing tricks, not magic. I think people are impressed, fooled, maybe even entertained by card tricks, but they will always be sure your doing tricks.

It is just a thought, but would a real magician, if he where to entertain in a restaurant, do card tricks? Or would he make the bowl of soup levitate, summon demons and all this other fancy stuff. Yeah I know no one would like to have a demon at his dinner, but shouldn't that at least sometimes be the goal to strive for, to make magic more like magic and less like a puzzle or a trick.

Best wishes and nice holidays.


Friday, December 18, 2009

Filler Post

How many magicians do you need to screw in light bulb?

Eight of them!

One to screw in the light bulb,
one who thinks he has a better method,
one to criticise the the method of the first,
one who believes the presentation needs work,
one who changes the method and sells it,
one to buy the new version, sold by the former one,
one who thinks that all others are stooges,
and finally one who saw a flash in the end.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Why? Why So Ugly?

This goes out to the designers of magic props. Why do they look like a magician's prop?
In other words, why is there suspicion built in directly from the start?

Sometimes this approach makes sense. Pretty much all sucker effects fall into that category.
But most often this is a stupid way to go. Glitter and the boxy nature of most magic props kind of give away that there is a secret built in, ergo attention is directed towards the prop and not the magician.

So who gets the praise after the effect? The prop. And rightfully so.

I have seen Jeff Mcbride doing prop magic on his lecture "StandUp DVD"
It was horrible. Really. Aside from the fact that I think Jeff Mcbride really goes a little overboard, when he is outside of Las Vegas.

So here is my stupid idea of doing a Square Circle without all the colour, glitter and pomp.

Imagine the following scene. A little girl is missing her kitty Mr. Biggles. All she has is the bright red collar of Mr. Biggles.

So what does the magician do. He takes a card board box that has been laying around in some street or backstage
and unfolds it. Then takes a second box. Puts both together drops the collar inside the boxes. A second later. Mr. Biggles is back into his collar.

Hmm Mr. Angel... that would suit your style a lot I think.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

WMF Steve Wyrick

Have you seen this man? Another over the top performer who acts like a prime time David Copperfield. Full of romanticism, dreams and illusions. Yeah I am close to vomiting.

Why is he a Weekly Magic Failure? I'll tell you why. For being a dick, that's why! I do not know if this is true, but according to Courthouse News Service "Franz Harary claims that he and Steve Wyrick agreed to swap elaborate props in 2006, Harary giving his 'Water Tank Illusion' prop to Wyrick in exchange for Wyrick's 'Appearing Airplane Illusion' prop."

The story goes on: "Wyrick gave him a broken, useless prop that had 'been left to rot in the desert sun for a number of years.' Harary, who intended to lease the prop to other magicians, says he is out about $100,000 for repairs and lost profits."

Does this sound like a nice deal? Of course not. Those stories tend to be over dramatised, yet it let's Wyrick stand in some shady spotlight. I always thought something is wrong with this guy. And a few of you actually suggested him to be a WMF. Rightfully so. The Las Vegas Sun states: "The closure came as little surprise, as lawsuits filed earlier this year against Wyrick over unpaid bills indicated business wasn't good for Wyrick and the performers who contracted to use his stage."

So it looks like Wyrick has a gift. The gift of bullshitting other into believing it is worth to support this man. More as it unfolds.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

The Annual Magic Failure

A while a go I made a survey letting you guys vote who is the Magic Failure of the Year 2009.

Number 3: Steven Youell

Yeah our favourite troublemaker of the magic café got third place. For those of you who don't know. Steven Youell is a self proclaimed authority on card magic. I have read one of his ebooks. Ironically he sent it to me after I made him our very first Weekly Magic Failure. And all I can say, it is the most awful piece of magic literature I have read. Most bad stuff at least has some entertainment value. But this had none. The routines where boring and the methods needlessly complicated. Expect one thing... In there was a really nifty way of glimpsing a peeked at card. I really liked that.

But that is not the reason he was awarded the awesome title WMF. No he got it because of his behaviour on the magic café. The owner of the magic café Steve Brooks is a good friend of Steven Youell. And that gives him certain powers. Editing powers. Steven Youell denied that in a few conversations I had with him. But I do not believe him. I heard so many first hand stories of friends of mine, of threads disappearing or being closed with Youell having the last word. And he sends out private messages threatening other users not to mess with the mighty Steven Youell. (I have screenshots to back that up)

Steven Youell was the very reason that this blog exists. We needed a second opinion.
Anyway, I remember that Steven Youell was sick for a while. Steve Brooks even send out a public message asking everybody to purchase Youell's lecture notes, so Youell can use the money to get well. Wow a sales pitch based on the premise of a sick man. Now that is sick. Anyway, he got third place. And well deserved I might add.

Number 2: Shawn Farquahr

Remember him. The winner of this years FISM. Boy was that some good time. He was a magic failure because of his attitude. (which was way before FISM) Basically what he does, is thinking of himself as the "shit". As the best thing that happened to magic ever. My thinking was , that he falls asleep each night thinking "I'm so great, I'm so great, I'm so great"... and there are a few hints that back me up on this one.

He is a name dropper, a habit that I deplored many, many times. For instance, he did a lecture and on that lecture he said that he could not tell who his client was, but it was in the white house. Why would anybody say that except to crave attention. And he needs that attention so badly...

So is he a bad magician. No, he is not. He is decent. Most of the Weekly Magic Failures are not awarded for being bad. Mostly for being liars, cheaters, cowards, schmucks, stinkers and that sort of stuff. (Hell, I awarded myself for being a Meany) So Shawn basically got the title WMF for being cheap. For all sorts of things. Example: In a promotion video, he actually has the balls to have his ego stroked, by having the song "Stand Up (for the Champion)" by Right Said Fred being played in the video. Wow, that is bad.

Anyway, later that year he was awarded the title World Champion by the FISM-crew (which from now on I will call the "bunch of crazy lunatics") Now that was the ego boost this man really didn't need. And he won with an ambitious card, basically. You know that song by Sting called "Shape of my Heart" which is a great song. And cards are named throughout the song. So naturally a perfect song for magicians. So Shaw produced those cards according to the lyrics. And it would have been a beautiful routine... if it wasn't for the fact that Shawns performance during FISM wasn't all that great. Yet the bunch of crazy lunatics failed to see this and awarded him the prize he craved so much.

I was hurt when I learned about this. The FISM that I liked so much turned into a charade. Damn it. Well Shawn got only second place here... as usual.

Number 1: Criss Angel

I never got around the fact that Criss Angel is written "Criss" instead of "Chris". And that the word "Angel" looks exactly the the Germany word "Angel" which means "fishing rod". Funny isn't it? So "Chris Fishing Rod" got the first prize in my stupid little contest. He is the genuine Annual Magic Failure. But why?

In case you live on the other side of the moon, "Chris Fishing Rod" is the host of a show called "Mindfreak" a show about him. He has got that nice emo look going and more gold on his body than Mr. T in his good years. Making him a Weekly Magic Failure was kind of a no brainer. The joke was about him actually being more woman than man and the thing that made him WMF was that he was seemingly unable not to do any camera tricks or rely on stooges. Fact: most of his magic happens in the editing room. Where crucial parts of the performance are cut, giving us a false impression. It was impressive, yes, but it due to the public nature of this Television Show warped the image of magicians.

I do not know why he won the little survey of mine, but I assume it is about all the magicians out there who are pissed about being asked about "Chris Fishing Rod". He made such a heavy impact on the laypeople, who wanted the same kind of experience from any magician, who were unable to deliver that kind of magic.

So for crapping on other magicians "Chris Fishing Rod" got first prize.

Congratulations to all who contributed so much bad magic. I hope you are luckier next year.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

KORBINIAN - The dealer crisis...

Hello folks in digital wasteland,

today I want to talk about our most favorite individuals in magic. The dealers, who provide us with our drugs, with the wonders to which we are addicted.

Until last year I worked at a little shop, supervising the magic corner and selling magic tricks. So I got in touch with quite a lot of magic dealers and I still like talking with them. But in the last years most of the time when I am talking with them , they start to complain about everything. Their customers, the internet, other dealers and all this other shit. Oh I forgot, most of their hate is directed towards China, this evil country, so full of copys.

But firmly believe this problem is selfmade. For years the dealers deceived their customers, selling them tricks they never needed or could perform. And now the customers went of to buy in the internet. How did this come to be?

Simply because they bought their tricks because of the texts in the catalogue, opened the box, just to find out, that it was a piece of crap, unperformable by anyone.

But now the situation has changed, now we can look at demo-videos before we spent our money. So the situation seemed to change in favor of the the customer, but how deceiving the things can be.

Now we are confronted with videos, which are edited, so they deceive us more than any text before. And even more, some people even really lie. For example this really nice fellow Hugo Leclercq, a collegue of the famous Kevin Parker.
He posts a video on this wonderful platform of self-advertisment, youtube, of a selfinvented pencil through bill penetration, which he calls Illegal, another topic about which I could rant for hours, and parallel he starts a discussion in this other platform for lonely nerds, learnmagictricks, about this trick. And if you read the discussions going on there, there is only one possible way to accomplish this miracle. To have a hole, which you can transfer anywhere you like. A real miracle. Such a shit.

So why is anyone wondering, that the customers started downloading magic tricks. For years dealers ripped them of with their tricks. Now the customers strike back. Yes there is a lot of collateral damage, not all dealers or inventors sell that much crap, but as long as dealers sell the crap alongside the good stuff, how can the customers see the difference.

And a last point. Most magicians don't buy tricks to perform them. Most just buy tricks to know their workings. So since most of the present market seems to be dominated by DVDs just teaching secrets, they are easily stolen. Try to download a head chopper, or even a pack of cards. But this unfinished ideas, which flood the market, are just ideas and they can easily be stolen.

So to you dealers, begin to treat your customers with honesty and they will buy from you again. And I know not all of you are scoundrels.

So have a nice weekend.


Friday, December 11, 2009

WMF Daniel Madison

This weeks WMF is the very untalented Daniel Madison who clearly needs to learn to enunciate. English is his first language right? But at least he is not as bad as Kevin Parker. Anyway, here is a clip of the very untalented Daniel Madison.

Did you notice it? The crappy handling of the cards prior to the tearing of the corner? There are much more natural ways to show a card with a missing corner. Weird isn't it... because I have seen the very untalented Daniel Madison doing fancy looking sleight of hand.

So why the difference? I do not know, but I recognize the signs if a magicians doesn't think his stuff through. And the very untalented Daniel Madison is a typical case. I do not even know how he made it into the Theory11 list. I would not hire a magician who looks like a hippie who is stoned out of one's head and is in desperate need for a hair cut. And what is up with all the black and white? Artistic choice, if so, not my taste.

Okay, I gotta give him one thing. He does have the physique that makes me fear him. I bet he could beat the shit out of me. More than he can do magic. That is for sure.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

How Not To Do A Video

Let's say you got an great looking effect. And you wanna sell it. This is not how to do it:

Shaky camera, footage all blurry, way toooooooooooooooooooooooo much shit going on that distracts from the effect. Too long, too desaturated, too boring.

A lot of attention went into the sound of this video, adding a nonexistent sound at the moment of the effect. But the picture got the ugly treatment.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Wasting The Wonders

I admit it. I waste effects during the show. Meaning, that I do something that is really "strong" and then not waiting for the applause but going on quickly.

Here is the reason: if you were a real magician, those things would be normal to you. They would be no wonders, nothing spectacular that deserves applause. You would just do them, because you entertain with them.

Doing that creates two things.

1. The audience perceives you as someone who is larger than life. You do not need to celebrate each effect, you do not need applause every time. In a weird way the magicians appears more modest. The act also seems less interrupting and the flow is much nicer.

2. If this is nothing to you, what is something to you? Strangely it will seem that you are capable of doing much more than you do. Leaving them to wonder what else you might have up your sleeve. So this creates natural interest. It makes you seem more in tune with your character which is a magician.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Just A Sunday Post #28

Alright... A female doing magic... not bad... decent routine, unique style, good looks, fitting character, clear structure, filthy subtext, Portishead, personal, not every ones taste...

Damn, she is so much better than most male magicians. Including me.

Her name is Diana (I think) from Magic Theater DiArchy which is a big candidate for another WMF... as both of them Diana and Arvydas copy other magicians acts. In the short clip on the HOMEPAGE you can see lots of stuff that has been done by other magicians. Spot the acts could be a nice drinking game. But I will go into that a little later... for now I leave you all with this nice rope act.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Comic Time #19

KORBINIAN - Expand your consciousness

Hello and good saturday,

today would I like to ask something. How many of you guys go to a museum or listen to contemporary music? Do some of you inform themselves about political issues or are interested in movies?

I am asking, because I made the experience, that we magicians are incredibly confined to magic. And I firmly believe that as artists, which we all want to be, we must be open and responsive to the world around us.

In the book about Milt Kort, he wrote how great magic is as a hobby, and of course I believe it's true, but in the next thought it reminds me of those martial arts guys, who not only train sports but also a way of life. Which is not a problem, as long as I don't forget there are other people with other lives and other ways of living out there.

So what I want to say, is simply get out, get a life and listen to the people around you, so even your magic could improve.

Best wishes,


Friday, December 4, 2009

WMF Laurence Miller

There is a DVD out called "Bicycleman" by Laurence Miller. There is a trailer for DVD. Take a look:

Looks promising doesn't it? Well yeah it does. But it is not.

I will sort of leave you with that...

Only 6 of the 24 moves are taught. DVD running time is only 40 minutes instead of the advertised 1 hour and 40 minutes. This is such a rip of. And Laurence Miller seems to be a shady character as well. One of the black sheep in our family. Stay away from this product, stay away from the guy.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Clearly Crap

Layperson aka normal guy: "It is oh so obvious. The coins vanish up his sleeve all the time. And that is where they come from. If it would not be so, he would roll up his sleeves."

Jay Scott Berry. I respect the artist, but this routine is really bad. What performance conditions are required to get away with some of the more angle sensitive and broad moves, yet is close enough to see the half dollar. And the transformation from clean to bloody coin is hard to see.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

It was inevitable!

Magic Failure of the year is... Criss Angel. 61 votes (25%)
Second place: as usual Shawn Farquhar. 59 votes (24%)
Third place: The one and only Steven Youell. 40 votes (16%)

Nobody got over 50%, meaning that nobody was bad enough to unite a whole half of the voters against him. I was surprised I only got 12 votes. Nobody got no votes.

There is a prize coming up.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Just A Sunday Post #27

Deutsche Version

Wow, this is bad. No audience management. The spectators simply go away. And he drops that one coin. How embarrassing. And his English, boy I heard better.

KORBINIAN - Waste of words...

Hello, you spell weavers and magic makers.

Today I'll revive an age old topic, probably one of the oldest topics in magic history. Critics and their opinions.

Most of you are probably part of a magic club or have at least attended one of their meetings. So surely everyone knows the kind of talk, which goes on after the presentation of your favorite routine.
You spend a lot of time in studying details, learning sleights, inventing pattern and all these other stuff, we like to think about, and then the first point of critique is: Why do you use a black-backed deck, or maybe, you should use red balls instead of the brown ones.

I'm thinking, where lies the point of these critics. Why do they do this? I remember vividly a meeting, in which a young magician showed this thread from eye-effect. Okay it's probably not on the same level as an award-winning manipulation act, but it was cleanly shown and without flaws. An the critic was, that it was oral magic, so untrue, since it is ocular magic, and as such unworthy of a magician. WTF.

Okay, it is not an effect for a restaurant magician, but this critic is just shit. Especially in the context of the next performer, who is a graduate-student of the magic-school in our city. Oh I almost forgot, that the previous critic was the former owner of this school.
So this nice-looking fellow, maybe a little bit overweight, clumsy and insecure, not to insult him personally, showed us a wonderful silk production.

I fucking hate silk production, especially out of a soap bubble, with lousy steals and without context or sense. Why on earth would anyone like to see this. Where lies the wonder, where mystery, anything. But no critics, nobody stood up, nobody shot this fella down. There maybe truly wonderful silk effects, but this was certainly not one of them.

So why got the first one criticized and the second not. I'll tell you two reasons. First one, he was a student of the school and no ones dares to criticize someone, who has a diploma on his wall or maybe won a competition somewhere, which is really not that difficult, thinking about the sheer amount of competition, which are taking place all over the world.
And second, because his magic is fucking old-school, no threat to the images of the old geezers, who despise real magic. And that is because they hate to be fooled, they hate it when they have to feel like real persons. And they feel humiliated, when they have to ask how it works.

And one must think, that most of them don't perform regularly, especially those with the biggest mouth, they usually perform never, expect for the mirror and even then only self-working Tenyo replicas.

So the only advice I can give you, stick to your buddies, listen to them or even better listen to none, who says how things should be. Think for yourself and believe your audience, but not a single magician.

And one last thing, someone once said to me, critics are only angry, because they are unable to produce art, that's why they became critics.

Friday, November 27, 2009

WMF Gandalf The Grey / The White

Deutsche Version

Throughout the big epic fantasy novel "the Lord of the Rings" by J.R.R. Tolkien we are told that Gandalf is the great wizard. That he can do so much. But let's face it, he does little magic. He blows a smoke ship, lights his staff, creates an energy shield do save him from one lash of the fiery whip from the Balrog and that is pretty much it.

That is very little magic compared to the time that the whole show/book runs. Which is years.

So I must conclude that Gandalf is a pretty lousy magician. I suppose his Double Lifts are weak too.

Compared to other fictional magicians he doesn't do anything. Merlin does way more. Any random witch is more busy. Hell, even Harry Potter, an apprentice is more diligent.

That is why Gandalf is this weeks magic failure.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

EDEN - On Double Lifts

I met Shawn Farquhar several weeks ago. I told him that everyone can talk all they want about his performance at FISM, but the fact remains that he is the champion.

I just wanted to say that his double lift is hardly world champion material. And the fact that it's possible to win FISM with such a sloppy double lift is less a slight on Farquhar than it is a statement on weak double lifts everywhere. Yes, you're the champ, but man, what a painful double lift.

On the other end of the spectrum is the fancy pants double lift with convincers. Asher's Diving Board Double, or Daryl's preferred handling (whose name has completely escaped me) are prime examples of this. Who actually turns a card over like that? (Jugglers, possibly, but see last weeks rant) Don't get me wrong, they are amazing to see in action and I respect the work put into them, but sleights should be invisible.

Learn a nice basic strike or pushoff double. And make it look exactly like your singles. And save your fancy moves (card masturbation, really) for the magic club.

For such a fundamental sleight, there are so many people who do it very badly. Don't be one of them.

eden loves you

Comic Time #17

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The German Special

Here if you speak any German, you will have fun, as it deals with last week's magic failure Mickaelus.


Sunday, November 22, 2009

Just A Sunday Post #26

Richard Turner, he is the man. Unfortunately he can't see his own work.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

KORBINIAN - Our beloved freaks...

So this time a post about a little special someone.

A guy called Dan Sperry. I think he is in some way connected to the Theory 11 guys, but I am not exactly sure. He is teaching some stage card manipulations there.

What do I have to say about him. At first I liked him. I like tattoos, piercings, spiky hair and weird looks. I firmly believe that all those clean shaved, handsome and well-groomed magicians are a bit boring. Magic could certainly be more fun and carry more meaning, if not everything would be flowers and doves.

And exactly that's my point. This guy Mr. Sperry tries to be so freaky, its almost satire. But okay, whatever, thats personal taste. But then his show. Dove manipulations with colourfully dyed doves. I would have expected big black crows or vultures, but pink doves are just poncey. Thats so totally out of character it's just silly.

Just take a look at his video.

I don't want to say, he is a bad magician and I also must admit I really liked his clockwork-bird effect. But in my opinion he really needs a new and coherent image.


KORBINIAN - An introduction of my humble self...

Hello to you folks out there.

My name is Korbinian Häutle and I feel very honored to be allowed to contribute a little something to this fantastic blog.

I am working on the streets of Munich in Germany as a busking magician. Because of that I have played a few hundreds show in front of audiences, which really don't care about new gimmicks, fancy moves or other stuff, we magicians love and buy. But I love these people, these earnest hard-working fellas, who support our art and without whom we would be just a bunch of jugglers.

Why do I call us magicians jugglers? We are jugglers, but we don't show our moves. Eden got it right in the context of XCM. This is clearly juggling, just show-off stuff.
"Magic is the absence of moves." (Dai Vernon)
[Roland is right, quoting makes me feel smarter.]

So the audience is hopefully unaware of our moves, all they perceive are our effects. But these effects just happen in their heads. We all know that nothing of the effects we show happen for real. So all of the time we should be thankful to our audiences for letting themselves be fooled.

So be nice, treat them with the most earnest respect and don't ever forget, that without these fellas, you would just be juggler but not a magician.

P.S.: But I also like jugglers. :-)

Friday, November 20, 2009

WMF Mickaelus

Who is this young German man? Yet another one who feels the need to explain magic tricks that are not his own creations. Below you see a version of the linking rings "performed" by this 18-year old fellow.

If you check out his channel on you will see that he explains a whole bunch of stuff.

Among the explanations you will find: The folding coin, the linking rings, various card moves, Tarantula, the Raven, the invisible deck, Tagged and the Intercessor.

Most of it is in German but a few bits are in English.

Let me make one thing clear. Mickaelus does not contribute anything to the art he just spoils it. And he calls himself a magician. Oh dear! The parents have never heard of responsibility. Otherwise the could have put an end to this in time. By doing an abortion.

Mickaelus has quit magic, he is no longer Weekly Magic Failure.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Friday, November 13, 2009


Hi Friends,

I'm pulling double duty, because Roland has been stricken with the H1N1 virus.

Today, we are going to talk about XCM. Why do you guys learn these moves? They are only useful for impressing other magicians. Lay people have no idea how hard it is to learn these 7 packet cuts and therefore have no interest in watching you do it. I guess the argument can be made that you learn what you want, and that you'd rather learn a fancy cut than a nice sidesteal, which I suppose is fair enough.

What I also think is fair enough is that XCM is not magic. XCM is a series of difficult moves, which suggests (only suggests!) proficiency in sleight of hand, but XCM is not magic. When a lay person sees a series of moves, the logical conclusion is that the series of moves effects the result. When a lay person sees you do nothing at all, the logical conclusion is that magic effects the result. That's the difference. This is why an ambitious card routine should never have a shuffling phase. When you shuffle, the shuffling action causes the card to rise to the top. But when you apparently do nothing, magic causes the card to rise to the top. Unless you have a weak double lift. Then that causes the card to rise to the top (oh, I feel next week's topic alread). But you get my point here.

XCM has more in common with juggling than magic. Do whatever you want to do, but be aware you're not performing magic.

eden loves you. even you.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

EDEN - A Near Life Experience

for putting myself in the hospital this weekend, i am forced to award myself weekly magic failure.

everything below is how i remember it. times given loosely correspond to time stamps on text messages sent and received.

saturday, november 7th, 2009.

get out of bed. skip breakfast. meet september at deighton's well. get a ginger ale and the world's smallest portion of potato wedges. they were free. estimate and cut 5 feet of white upholstery thread. do this twice. start threading 32 size 9 sewing needles onto each length. tie needles about 2 inches apart.

finally finish threading and tying one set. other set still unfinished and stuffed hastily into pouch. remember thinking they will get tangled but not caring. september leaves and i leave shortly after. walk along cordova street to granville street. i am shivering uncontrollably. it is not that cold. i cannot stop my teeth from chattering. it is really not that cold.

roll a cigarette. start slowly forming whip cracking motions without cracking them. light my cigarette. start cracking whips for real. trouble with poppers being brand new. start breaking poppers in. not shivering at all any more. gather a crowd. forget to do vanishing cigarette trick. inflate balloon for balloon swallow. crowd starts to cheer. balloon pops. inflate another. swallow balloon. crowd starts to cheer. balloon has a hole. inflate third and final balloon. swallow balloon. crowd does not cheer.

remove nail from pocket. nail is examined and verified to be a real nail. nail is inserted ten centimeters into my nasal cavity. crowd responds in kind. nail is removed from nose. crowd responds. needles are produced and examined. female volunteer with flashlight brought onto stage. she verifies a needle going into my mouth. she checks inside my mouth. she finds nothing. she verifies another needle going into my mouth. she checks inside my mouth again. again, she finds nothing. several needles are shown. she is asked to guess how many there are. she says ten. there are twenty-two. the whole packet is placed into my mouth. one last time, she verifies that she cannot see anything remaining in my mouth. i produce 1500 m of white cotton thread. i estimate and break off a five foot length. i swallow the thread. nothing remains in my mouth. i reproduce the first needle. it is now tied to the thread. and the next needle. it is tied to the thread. and the next needle. and the next. all the needles are coming back tied to the thread. but wait. i had two more than that.


collect the money. hurry. someone asks if i have $45 to make change for a $50. i do not. i empty my hat into my pouch. i jam the needles into my pouch. balloon pump left pocket. sewing thread right pocket. shit. hurry. kneel in the middle of granville street and reach down my throat. nothing. walk to johnny fox's irish snug. say hi to dave. use the restroom. it's occupied. get in. wash my hands. use soap. try to see down my throat in the bathroom mirror. on tiptoes. impossible. lock myself into a stall. reach as far as i can. j hook. nothing. i try not to swallow, cough, or gag.

ask dave for closest hospital. st. paul's. tell dave i'll see him later. walk to st. paul's. jay walk. stomach pains along the way. has a needle fallen down? ER entrance. embarrassed to tell reception what happened. tell them anyways. they say: on purpose? no.whips taken by security. fast tracked through ER. check in at fast track waiting room. pushed through to ENT room. have to explain to doctor what i did. doctor looks for specialist. i try not to swallow, cough, or gag.

text september with news. use words "retard" and "hilarious dumbassery" to describe self. confident i will be out of hospital in time to grab a beer at johnny foxes. i try not to swallow, cough, or gag.

2 x-rays taken to determine location of needles. stomach/abdomen and then throat/jaw. x-rays only show 1 needle. definitely swallowed two. i try not to swallow, cough, or gag.

1 more x-ray of stomach/abdomen ordered. no needle. closer examination shows two needles stuck very close together in my throat. try to get copies of the x-ray. they only exist in electronic form now. saddened. back to ENT room. continue texting september. start texting erin. jokingly work out contingency plans in case i die. try to arrange saturday night drinks with erin. use my hospitalization for pity points. i try not to swallow, cough, or gag.

whips are returned to me. security guy is done his shift. sent to wait in the fast track waiting room. ENT specialist calls another ENT specialist. watch peachtree TV. movie is about a teenage boy losing his virginity to a much older woman. total milf. TV is on auto timer. TV shuts off by itself. pretend to be interested in my fingernails. notice they need a trim. try to read a waiting room magazine. accidentally choose chatelaine. try to turn the TV back on. cannot find button. continue text messaging. continue examining fingernails. i try not to swallow, cough, or gag.

2nd ENT specialist shows up. this is my third doctor. i still do not think the problem is serious. back to ENT room. new doctor is suitably amused with my situation. promises to try get me x-rays to show my friends. machine is produced with which to look into my throat through my nose. numbing spray is determined necessary for me. i protest. they insist. i try not to swallow, cough, or gag.

numbing spray is found. seriously. that is the actual time it took. disgusting numbing spray applied to both nostrils. i gag. instrument inserted into my nostril. both needles are visually verified. i figure we are almost done. i text erin to start heading downtown. i try not to swallow, cough, or gag.

we walk to the ENT clinic. i text erin and apologize for misjudging the time. hospitals are creepy at night. a third ENT specialist in consulted and will actually remove the needles. this is my fourth doctor. i am still not aware of the potential danger of my situation. new doctor hears my story. new doctor makes me promise to never do it again. i promise. they look for instruments to use. various scary metallic objects in sterile, vacuum sealed bags are produced. a similar instrument as before is used to look into my mouth, but this time hooked up to a TV screen. a mirror feed is behind the surgeon so i can see as well. i try not to swallow, cough, or gag.

the procedure is described to me. i have to hold my tongue out of the way and control my gag reflex while the surgeon removes the needles. erin arrives downtown. i tell her to grab a coffee and that i will be right out. i grab my own tongue with gauze and pull down as hard as i can. it hurts. i have to pull harder. large tongs and the camera go down my throat. i am told to breathe through my nose. i cannot. i stop breathing. i gag. it hurts. numbing spray is produced. disgusting numbing spray is applied directly to my throat. i gag. it hurts. we try again. i grab my tongue. instruments go in. i gag. it hurts. the disgusting vomiting spray is applied to my throat ten times in rapid succession. i dry heave, but there is no food in my belly. it hurts. we try again to grab the needles. i gag. we try. i gag.

we take a break. i try to reach my zen place. we try. the surgeon has the needles in his forceps. he works them side to side to free them. they are nearly out.


i gag, i gag, i gag. it hurts, it hurts, it hurts. the needles are stuck in my throat sideways. i am asked if i am okay. i am not okay. i am coughing up blood. a lot of blood. i am gasping . the needles are still sideways. i have tears running down my face from the instruments in my throat and i have snot coming out of my nose and i have saliva and phlegm and blood in my mouth and i am scared. i finally realize i am in big trouble. miraculously, one of my convulsions loosens the needles and sets them how they were stuck before. i text erin and tell her to go home because i will be a while.

Sunday, November 8th, 2009

i am going into surgery to have the needles removed. there is no one in the OR. lucky me. erin comes to the hospital to see me. she hates hospitals. another surgeon shows up. this one is dressed in a tux. i am embarrassed for pulling him away from an engagement and apologize. he waves it off. i leave my effects with erin and she goes home. i have to strip naked and put on hospital clothes. i think how one of the gowns is like a snuggie. i try not to cough or gag.

i get placed onto a hospital bed. i get wheeled around. luxurious. no allergies, no previous medications, otherwise healthy, no family history of complications. i sign forms. they start to stick things to me and in me. a mask goes over my mouth.

i wake up. i am in another room. i am asked if i want to leave now or in the morning. i choose morning. i get wheeled to on overnight room. i try to sleep. i call erin and thank her for showing up. my phone is running out of batteries. i turn it off.

my throat hurts. a lot. worse than it did with needles in. i do not dare make a noise with my throat. i do not remember being told how to summon a nurse. i panic and look at instruments around me. i find an unlabelled button. i am paranoid pushing it will kill me. tell myself this is unlikely. i am still afraid to push the button. i try to trace the cord back to the wall. it gets lost in a tangle. my throat still hurts. i close my eyes and jam on the button. i hear ringing in the hallway. a nurse appears. i whisper for painkillers. he comes back with ice water and two dosages of liquid T3s. ice water stings my throat but i have to try for it. i shoot the T3s down. they are surprisingly tasty. i drink some more of the water. does not hurt as much as before. i am told to pee in a bucket.

turn my phone back on.

i overhear nurses talking about my case in the hallway. they sound mildly amused. i'll be discharged after breakfast.

cell phone dies.

erin shows up and i get to leave.