Sunday, February 27, 2011

Just A Sunday Post #84

Lately I feel like a father who has a kid who loves to draw. Naturally all of that the images are crap but you can tell that a lot of effort went into most of them. And like a daddy, I love to see what my little son has come up with today. Sometimes it is a picture of a bird and sometimes a space ship. Hard to tell the difference most of the time.

Pretty much this is what I feel when I take my daily look at the latest Calen Morelli creation.

One day he will grow up and be someone creative.

Saturday, February 26, 2011


There are weird things going on in the World of Warcraft.

Who names his characters that way. Cool? Maybe!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Magic Regrets 05

Get well, Phil, I can hardly tell that you were drugged up making this video. Talk about indecent sales pitch.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Pathetic Wailing

Hey, did anyone of your products ever get a bad review? If so... deal with it. Unlike Justin Miller and Robert Smith. Both had bad product reviews by Wizards Product reviewers Craig Petty and David Penn. And they are pretty upset:

And there are four more videos of this. And while Justin Miller and Robert Smith have valid points they go way too far. Seriously, before you get pissed of at Craig Petty and David Penn you should take a look at them. They are two nerds who do magic. What about them makes you take them seriously? They are laughable losers like most of us. Those are two guys who give the face down WOW-gimmick a good review. That thing stinks of gimmick. Craig Petty and David Penn are as far from the real world as possible.
So don't get angry at some school boys for not liking your toys. Yeah right, toys.

Grow up man!

Just saying Craig Petty & David Penn don't even get what "ANY Card at ANY Number" means. At 8:20... just watch that bit.

This is not ANY card at any number. And if they don't get the effects straight how do you think they get their magic thinking straight?

To sum up my little rant here: Craig Petty and David Penn are loser, Justin Miller and Robert Smith are whiny and people have opinions about people and things and you don't have to like it.

Again: Grow up man!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Magic Baby!

This picture is wrong on so many levels. Brad Christian looks way too gay and Paul Harris way too much like a hobo. And getting that vibe they are way too close to each other. It might be my filthy little mind, but can you imagine what a magic baby between the two would turn out to be? Gimmicky card magic that is way overpriced.

I'd rather prefer offspring to this:

Gee, I got issues!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Three Rules of Performing

#1 Make the difficult easy,
#2 then make the easy beautiful
#3 and then make the beautiful entertaining.

Many flourishers seem to have never heard of rule #3.

Monday, February 21, 2011

WMF Gregg Ace

This is a fun one. This week's failure is Gregg Ace a handyman from New York who does business in Connecticut. He calls himself "The Magic Handyman" and he is a true Jack of all trades. He does carpenter work, electrical work, music and among all that he also does magic. He even has a YouTube channel to call his own.

And what does he do with his Channel? Exposing magic of course. In the video below you will see him explaining the top card palm. He puts emphasis on the fact that he is teaching it correctly. Well he is not. But see for yourself:

Among the things he exposes: The Side Steal, The Mexican Turn Over (well done I might add) and the Back Palm production.

The interesting thing is this: I feel like he really wants to help people with their magic. He seems to have a "true" heart. But helping people's magic with indirect tutoring not the best way to go. What I would recommend is this. Real time sessions via Skype. You will get a kick out of this. It's free, you learn to know your magic buddy. You can talk about all sorts of thing, not just magic. In fact an online Skype tutoring session is rewarding to both master and student. As long as the master doesn't charge money for it. (Unless the student wants to pay.)

So Gregg. You seem to love magic, why hurt it by not knowing who your students are? Just saying!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Just A Sunday Post #83

Talk about leaving motivated magic to ventriloquists. I have seen many square circles in my life, but never actually seen a square circle that is "motivated" Kudos.

Although this is cute too:
Combining it with a Genii Tube indeed gives you way more mileage out of this thing.

better than this unmotivated piece of trash:

I never liked the square circle, but I gotta admit that there is a way to motivated prop magic.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Straight Eye For The Queer Guy

Why do certain illusionist even bother to look sexually interested in their female assistants, when they are so obviously gay?

I don't care that they are gay, but I do care that they are such bad actors.

I don't wanna pick on Jan Rouven here, it is more a general thing. It feels odd to see an obviously gay man dry humping a female dance. (can't find the video)

So either hide the gayness so the actions fit the picture, or don't flirt with the female assistance on stage. Either way, I don't care!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

So this is what the Protests are all about!

Why do I always notice the little things? Like the metal whistle which moves by itself after it has been put on the table.

Can't be magnets... IT perhaps?

WMF Sathya Sai Baba

There is a chance you have heard of Sathya Sai Baba. If not here is the short version. Sathya Sai Baba is an Indian Guru called a godman his devotees. He does miracles. Such as producing ashes from his fingertips and producing several small palmable objects from his hands. But before I rant... here is a video clip to lighten up the mood.

Now that you've been blessed by his divinity... Sathya Sai Baba is a lousy magician.
In the next video you will see him producing a golden necklace (about 40 seconds in) his steal sucks. He totally didn't watch his angles.

The second trick is the ash production (around 2:30). His finger clip palm is not that bad, but his movement as he crushes the ash pill lacks total motivation, therefore telegraphing the audience that he did something sneaky. Those things can be avoided. For example: He could crush the pill as he points to his heart. That would be angle proof too and motivated. Just saying. He steals the pills from under a bunch of papers in his other hand. A holder would be much better. It would even allow for much bigger loads, ergo much bigger miracles.

The third trick is the regurgitation trick. Effect: A drink is taken then spilled from the mouth into a towel and in the towel is now a golden egg. (about 5:20) I am not sure weather the godman showed the towel to be empty before but having it in the lap, under the table is not good magic. Instead I would, have maybe a golden shell in the mouth. He could load the shell into his mouth as he takes the drink. His tongue would go into the shell so it cannot move around much. The egg shape helps a lot. Then he could push out his tongue (imagine the inner joy he could have as he is seducing the masses he kind of flips them of at the same time) and it would look like he regurgitated the egg. The a shuttle pass like move with the palmed real golden egg and he would have a convincing trick. The clean up would be done as he would be taking another drink.

Well he still has much more followers who believe his wonders than the average magician, proving once and for all. Showmanship is a great thing to have. Anyway for being a lousy magician Sathya Sai Baba is WMF.

BTW: I like what they are doing:

EDIT: His title has been revoked. He is dead now, he cannot possibly fail anymore. I do not believe in reincarnation, ergo I think the revoking is just.

Magic Regrets 04

Again big thanks to Phil for making these. Here is what I like about them. They are not mean spirited, but pretty constructive. So if you are the maker of a certain "magic regret" don't be mad. See it as encouragement to do better next time. Everyone fucks up once in a while, and if there is nobody to point it out it is bound to happen again.

And about card through window... we have come a long way since the first card through window hype surrounding the Peter Marvey version.

Personally, the old school version with the curtain in front of the window is a classic. It is solid, good and a work horse. Just take a duplicate card, stick it to the window and you are good to go. And all can be done way in advance. In fact here is what I did one time: Imagine the picture! I had a show in one of those office buildings. So high that you cannot open the window. I actually bribed the guy in charge of cleaning the window to stick it to the outside of a specific office. Right behind one of those big plants. Later in the show I removed the plant under some pretext and was good to go. That was one hell of a reaction and I got booked again. Well worth the 50 Euros it cost me to bribe the guy. And still cheaper than most of the versions that are out there.

About the ring box: It might be the wrong box, but the box you get is actually mighty fine if I recall correctly.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Good Move

Uh, uh, uh *raisingmyarmlikeaknowitall* I know what it is.

I remember those cheap paper glasses that made every spectator who wore them look stupid. Nice idea to apply this to camera. And asking 24.95 per DVD and gimmick is like 500% the investment. Well done Paper Crane Magic, well done! You understood the concept of a business.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Just A Sunday Post #82

Some rants:

Magician's Oath
"As a magician I promise never to reveal the secret of any illusion to a non-magician, unless that one swears to uphold the Magician's Oath in turn. I promise never to perform any illusion for any non-magician without first practicing the effect until I can perform it well enough to maintain the illusion of magic."
The line "I promise never to reveal the secret of any illusion to a non-magician, unless that one swears to uphold the Magician's Oath in turn." is weird, that means you can show it to anyone. And anyone can show it to anyone in turn! As long as you recite the oath.

Calen Morelli
Thinking one is the creative gift to the world is alright, sometimes. A little hubris prevents us from feeling like one of many, but with Calen Morelli it seems to be too much.

Mind Blowing. And so nice to make the spectator's clothing wet. Anyway, Calen Morelli sucks as a performer. Yet you can have an online skype session with him for just 99 dollars. Do you want to get taught by this young man?
Calen suffers from the Sankey Syndrome. That means he will create tons of tons of material that is neither groundbreaking nor shit. Once in a while he will hit the jackpot. Pro tip: Don't publish your material unless it has proven to be good. We got one Jay Sankey, that is more than enough.

Magic Contest
How pathetic is this: In order to learn cool magic secrets the maker of this blog made up a contest It is sick, that it has come to this.

Friday, February 11, 2011

One on One

Price in US dollar per hour

Michael Ammar 175
Aaron Fisher 100
Daniel Garcia 150
Daryl 125
John Guastaferro 100
Jay Sankey 100
Lee Asher 130
Wayne Houchin 150
Gergory Wilson 100
Richard Sanders 130
Eric Jones 100
Morgan Strebler 100
Huron Low 155
Calen Morelli 99
Joshua Jay 100
Sean Fields 99,95
Daniel Madison 150
Rich Ferguson 125
Eric Ross 105
Dan Sperry 49,95
Nate Kranzo 99,95
David Regal 125

These are the prices that the artist charge for a one on one Skype session. Some call it greed, some call it whoring out. Fact: Those magicians obviously don't get enough money performing magic, ergo they have to take the money from other magicians.

And Dan Sperry... he's a bargain. So here is my party idea. Since an hour of Skype is cheaper than booking the magician for real, book an hour. Let's assume you book Michael Ammar. 150 dollars and he is your slave for one hour. Make him show you his entire act. That way you get the show way cheaper than booking him. You can record it to and put it up on YouTube. There are endless possibilities to screw with those guys. But I guess I am mean spirited here. Let's be constructive.

I jump on board. Contact me via Skype and I will do the same thing they do (tell you how much you suck and what you can fix to be more like me) But I do it for free.

This is a waste of money. Sorry, but there is no other way to put it. I have done Skype sessions with really good magicians. One hour vanishes like a coin in thin air. So you would spend 100 bucks and get very little. Buy books. Perform for real people. All way cheaper and you can eventually say that you did it all yourself.

If there is one thing most magicians need, it is not a one on one about magic, but a one on one about social training.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

WMF The Magic Café

Don't get me wrong... Once in a while I love me some trash forum. But from a technical point of view the Magic Café really needs an update. I complained that the search function is broken, but that is not all.

The Forum is split up into more than a hundred separate forums. That is a lot. More than enough to get lost. As far as I know the Magic Café doesn't use standard scripts, but has a tech guy doing the work. That guy should get fired. Open source solution are out there able to handle the sheer amount of visitors and posts. They are free and much better.

Also... the moderators on the Café are pussies. The slightest discussion/controversy and the thread in question gets deleted. I thought forums were originally intended to battle out debates to reach conclusions. But not the Magic Café. This was actually one of the reasons this Blog came to be. If it wasn't for the "let's delete before it gets us in trouble"-attitude of the cafe this Blog and it's so dearly missed predecessor the Magic Circle Jerk wouldn't be.

If you take a look at the Genii Forum, you'll note that things run much smoother over there. Part of this is the mostly live and let live attitude of Kaufman & friends.

And there are plenty of other forums to showcase as "good" forums.

One of the bigger German magic forums is the "Zauberschrank Forum" which has an interesting feature that might be of help to the green monster. A "log" forum.

Whenever a change is made to a thread or a post it gets explained in the log. That helps to keep stuff clear. Note that it doesn't go much into detail, but leaves interested people not wondering what happened to a certain thread.

The Magic Café is the biggest magic forum in the world (I believe), there are thousands of magicians looking for help. Maybe they deserve more than this mess.

So Steve Brooks, please... clean up the forum. Make it cool again! As long as you don't consider your green monster WMF!

PS. Maybe I should add, that we magicians have no right to have a cool forum and Mr Brooks can do with the forum whatever the fuck he wants to, but still... The intent is good, the execution is not.

PPS: By the time I wrote this until now, that I am publishing this the Magic Café is down. Maybe they are fixing it. I doubt it!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Just A Sunday Post #81

This is just a minor rant about a certain way manipulation is done. Especially with thimbles and cigarettes.


Also don't turn your back towards your audience while doing so. This is the result of the habit of watching your own manipulation without the aid of a mirror.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Magic Regrets 02

Seems like it is going to be segment here. As long as Phil keeps making these.

This is what the demo from the originator, Michael P. Lair looks like:

And an Indian version by Uday Jadugar, which I have to say is much better in terms of method. In terms of looks both versions are about equal.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Jack of All Trades

A year ago I got a call from state penitentiary. One of the inmates was sentenced to death. To be fried in the chair. His last wish... he wanted to see a magician. So I went there.

I sat in a room. Around me six prison wards. Across the table the young man, that would soon be dead. In his cuffed hands he held a deck of cards. Then he gave me the cards and said: "Do that trick where the card always comes to the top!" Well, what could I do? I asked him to name a card. "Jack of Clubs" he said. I asked why. He answered "Because the Jack of Clubs is like me".

I had him sign the face of the card. He made three X's!

Well I made the Jack of Clubs come to the top of the deck a few times. Finally I palmed the card, and reached for my wallet. When I opened it to show the card was there the young man cried out in happiness "Freedom!"

It was so awkward. So strange. Well, he was allowed to keep the card. And then he was locked away. I got my fee and left. I never saw him again. I still don't know what he hoped for when he asked to see a magician.
Later I was told, that when they untied him from the chair, his hand still held the Jack of Clubs.

I dream of weird stuff lately!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Well, that explains it!

I was wondering why this weeks failure Colleen Ballinger chose magic to rape. I was totally unaware that her brother is Chris from Magic Geek. In that case it makes a lot more sense. But it still makes "magicdom" look like loser territory.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011