Tuesday, February 26, 2013

I'm good at predictions

So about a year ago the Real Secrets Project was started. I predicted that it was a scam. Turns out to be a scam. Here is a review of what you were getting. Hat tip to the Smiling Mule who finally started blogging again.

But it got me curious what I could do. So I saw the Real Secrets thing and the Bold Project and you know what I came up with something. A "project" of my own. Something that is far less of a beginners trap. In fact no trap at all. And it doesn't cost money.

Here is how it works:

  • It will be open ended.
  • It will be curated by me and by me only.
  • You are encouraged to send in your own tricks and theory, which after review will be published or rejected.
  • There will be no money involved.
  • It will be a PDF.file that will be updated all the time to a more recent version including the old and some new.
  • You can pimp some of your publications by giving me free stuff from it and a big fat link of where to get more will be included.
How you get in and how the project will be called is something that I will make up later.

If you have suggestions or warnings; shoot!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Friday, February 22, 2013

I'm endorsing this product!

Christina Lettau  / pixelio.de
Damn, I'm not being cynical or anything. I really believe that Justin Miller is onto something here. Wait, wait, wait... What? Justin Miller? The guy who is known for shitty customer support and see through magic? Yeah! That guy!

Oh, just in case you have not heard. Justin Miller just released BOLD, an open ended project that will teach you some Justin Miller magic. Basically you pay once and get access to downloads of videos that teach you magic. No, not just videos. Also essays, theory and some other stuff. More stuff will be added over time but you only have to pay once. The later you get into the project, the more you have to pay.

Now, ignore the red flags.

The question is, why am I endorsing this? Well because I like the structure. Paying once, continuous support! Not a life time support mind you. The project can end at anytime that Justin Miller decides. But the overall structure of not getting a final product and then having to pay for the next one really is an intriguing one.

By the way, here is what I don't like: That the price will go up. I have been running a similar project for few years now. It's called my Super Secret Magic Blog. Basically it's a blog that you can only read if I invited you. So far there are about 150 entries. But so far I have not made money doing so. I just let my magic friends read it and share my magic that way. Maybe I should ask for money. A one time payment sounds good. Being able to join in anytime, not being pressured into a an early bird discount sounds even better. But maybe I'm not BOLD enough.

Understand this Justin Miller, I like the subscription based idea of giving out magic. The fact that it will be a download makes it even more of a joy, as you won't have any trouble with costumer support and shit. I do not share your believes of "what it takes to truly call yourself magician", but the idea has a few other points that are good from both sides of the issue.

Yes the costumer gets it early and doesn't have to wait until it is fully produced. Gets the needed improvements later on. Gets more than the initial value.

The dealer has no actual product that needs being advertised, aside from the project itself. No actual cost of shipping and handling. 100% of the earned money goes directly into the pocket of the dealer.

How can this go wrong? Well if the actual items that will be released suck. So far it looks pretty weak.

In closing let me sum it up like this: The model is cool, the execution seems flawed. In the teaser video Justin says he's been working on the idea of many years now. Really? This can be thought up in one afternoon.

Suck it up! If you wanna buy the cat in the bag do so. I'm not endorsing the products or Justin Miller. I'm endorsing the concept if the price wouldn't go up.


Trick or Treat

More right here

Thursday, February 21, 2013

I'm gonna let you in on a little secret

I just browsed through some magic websites. Then I stumbled upon THIS.

The point that got my attention: "Professional Quality Printed in Germany using professional playing card stock which will satisfy the finger flickers!"

Guess what I'm from Germany, so here is something that Germans rarely talk about. It's about our playing cards: "THEY SUCK" Seriously. The best playing cards in the world are made in the USA. Germans cannot make playing cards. If you order some custom playing cards from Germany, the chances are really, really high that they are made in the USA.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Freaking funny

Hat tip to the man with the best second deal I wish I could do! Now I gotta watch the IT Crowd!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Power Claiming!

Didi01  / pixelio.de
So my gf started blogging and her first post was magic related, Yeah! She made an interesting observation. Because of our advances in technology and our awareness of technology any power claim that we magicians come up with becomes more and more ridiculous. Be it the mystical stone that heals everything, the magic wand that causes the magic, or the accident you had as a kind that allows you to read peoples thoughts.

So magicians instead have compensated for that by not proclaiming any power claim and just doing the shit they are doing. The result is a mess. They mix classic routines which have implied various power claims. They keep using the wand when doing  the cups and balls. They use magic salt for the torn and restored napkin. Minds are read using clever psychological principles.

The mess lies in the fact that the show as a whole suffers, as the cause of magic remains unknown and everything feels like a movie that is cut together by using clips from different movies. It might be the best scenes, yet the whole show has no story arc at all.

I suppose that only good magicians are aware of it. But I assume that the majority of magicians are unconsciously aware of it. So they feel unhappy with their work and cannot really put the finger on what is wrong with their show.

So here it is: Add a power claim! Yes it will be ridiculous, it won't be seen as the serious cause for your magic. But it works as a MacGuffin. It will push the magic. It automatically tells you what tricks you can and cannot do. And you can expand on the claim and it can become a character on it's own.

Example: You are a magician. Your power claim is that "secret thing" your pocket that you never show. It makes all your magic possible. What it is exactly you will never reveal. So naturally you have to go into your pocket all the time, take that "secret thing" out and rub it against the torn pieces of a piece of paper, which then restores. Or you put two pieces of rope in your pocket. The ends are hanging out of the pocket. You then pull on both ends and the pieces have fused into a long piece of rope.

So far the "secret thing" has done restorations. You can of course add other abilities to the "secret thing" It can cause steel to penetrate steel. It can cause coins to become invisible. It can made sponges go from one hand to the other.
So you see. The "secret thing" becomes a cool thing on it's own. Aside from the totally practical aspect of having a motivation to go into the pocket all the time. The "secret thing" is a character now. Maybe it even has a mind on it's own. Maybe you can struggle with it, as the result of the magic is not quite as you intend it. Now we are entering the realm of a dramatic conflict (not a real one of course) and suddenly your show is about something instead of being about everything.

The ending could be all about revealing what the "secret thing" is. And I leave you alone with that.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

well yeah and there was that

So some magic organizers from Belgium want to have Shawn Farquhar to lecture over there. So they look for a suitable picture to put on facebook. And what do they upload? The picture I uploaded many years ago of Shawn that I edited with my mad photoshop skillz. Turns out it's the first picture that shows up when you google the magicians name.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Dear Mentalist's...

... the following observation is true for most of you. Even for most magicians.

When picking a spectator to participate, picking a woman is a smart choice as her reaction tends to be stronger than the reaction of a male spectator. But picking just girls makes you look pretty much like a social loser. I've seen it. A chair test. Four seats and the mentalist has four women sit down. After that a drawing duplication, again with a woman. Then a prediction (clever routine) but all decisions were made by women. Male audience members were reduced to mere applauding cattle.

Now I had to admit that the mentalist I saw treated the ladies nicely, I have seen much worse. But dudes need their minds read too. So if you do something with two people or more. Make it 50/50! That way it is much less obvious that you are on stage because you lack certain social skills and that you compensate by ordering woman around, instead of getting bossed around by them.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Let's rehash!

Here is an old goodie from a time when this blog had much less readers.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Video Rant - Splinter

Are you really selling a coin split? Splinter by Michael Eaton. Seriously?

Edit: I should add, that Michael Eaton had nothing to say in the decision that Splinter would be a paid download. He intended it to be a free download.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Tipsy Bottle? Not just the bottle!

What is wrong with this guy? Seriously? Drunk? Retarded? or some sort of artistic genius that I am incapable of understanding within my lifetime?

This isn't just a fluke.... nope all his videos are like that.

Monday, February 4, 2013

List time!

  1. Stop wearing leather pants
  2. Don't quote yourself ever in your advertisement
  3. Stop wearing any glitter
  4. No lightning bolts in any of your print media
  5. No music shall start when your website is loaded
  6. No pictures of you with store bought tricks
  7. No endorsement quotes by celebrities who obviously wouldn't give a shit about you.
  8. Don't advertise with pictures of you in front of prestigious objects like silver sports cars that you clearly don't own.
  9. No pictures of you with other magicians. Period.
  10. No long sleeves unless you are a mentalist.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Wanna play a game!

I start a game. It's called "Find the thread". All you have to do is to go to the Green Monster. There you need to find the thread outlined here.

Here is the outline, that will lead you to the correct thread via subtle hints.

The thread is about a coin bend.
The thead has been hyping said coin bend before it's out
A video was promised "soon"
The delivery of the promise is still awaiting realisation.
The thead is in the "Latest and Greatest" section.

The winner of the game will get nothing, but dubious fame in the comments.

Friday, February 1, 2013


I had a show today. A nice one. Some adults, some children. All went well. After the show a few kids came up to me telling me I was the best magicians they have ever seen. I replied, that they probably haven't seen that many magicians. To which the kids said, that they have seen a lot of them. And then they named a few they didn't like. And it was all familiar names of magicians around where I live.

So not only did they remember the bad magicians. They remembered their names and even what they did wrong. One couldn't do any magic, the next one was unpleasant  and the last one smelled funny. Somehow I got to think that adults wouldn't be that honest and I was reminded once again that you should listen to kids.

How was the old proverb again: "Children and fools tell the truth"