Do you ever sit and
ponder? Ruminate? Cogitate? Daydream? Contemplate? There is an old story
about one of the old timers who, when asked what he did with his time,
was quoted as saying, "Sometimes I sits and thinks and other times when
I just sits."
This page is for pondering. Here you will find random thoughts and
jumbled ideas running together forming a tapestry of ideas. Here you
will find odd bits of philosophy, exaggerated opinions, twisted humor
and orphaned stories for your consideration and wicked enjoyment.
As a storyteller, one’s repertoire must be
eclectic. The immense wealth of folklore, myth, and legend presents us
with many wide vistas from which to choose. The world of gothic
literature allows us to pick and choose our venues of horror. The most
innocent of the morality plays and motivational stories can become a
vital part of our palette as we paint with words, our magical art.
One must find many different approaches to the presentation of magical
storytelling. One must use wide brush strokes to define this craft. In
the imagination, there are things possible nowhere else. Tales must be
told with disarming charm, they must surprise you with wit and in the
next story might have you crying over some insignificant little detail
that becomes crucial to the plot. Some stories will exhibit ugly signs
of morbidity one moment and senility the next.
In my task to share with you some of this creativity, I have taken into
account the fact that this art form is not for everyone. No one will or
should present their stories quite the same way but we should try to
design creative situations from those which we tell, to glean grains of
wheat from the chaff and make the story our own.
As to magical props, they must be treated as real. One does not have to
be an artist to make props but imagination can and should be your guide.
The storyteller can and does make a fool of himself or beguile you with
strange personalities, depending on what you read into the stories.
Stories worth telling are hard to find. Even more difficult is the task
of finding ones that go with particular effects you wish to do or
finding a particular effect that will fit a particular story you wish to
tell. Add to that the hundreds of strong magical effects that are so
very clever and well thought out, which, for some reason, we buy and
never use. I own many little things (I couldn’t live without.) that have
no story, no patter, and no reason to be on my shelves. Perhaps it was
that I was caught up in the magical surge that happens at conventions,
and like a kid in the candy store, I just had to buy something.
What I have tried to do in my storytelling is to take some of those
things down from the shelf, and use them in some of the story material I
have collected over the past couple of years. I will be the first one to
tell you that I am a collector of tales, tall or otherwise. Many have
been sent to me by friends who know I am an emotional dishrag and who
know that I’ll find a bit of magic or magick to make the story
I often include some stories that really belong in the general category
of “Gospel Magic.” If that style doesn’t fit your needs, then pass it by
and go on to something else. There are large groups of stories, a
potpourri of tales for a storyteller to explore. Some stories you may
never do. Some you will find that you like and will re-arrange the words
to suit your personality, performance style and venue. That is why they
should be included. I would hope that you find and collect stories that
catch your eye and turns on your creativity. There is more to “magic”
than just tricks. There are those precious moments that we can create
with our words that lift our very beings and stir deep inner feelings
that often we don’t really want to recognize. Here is where the art of
storytelling creates the real magic in our own lives and in those of our
At the very heart of storytelling is the ability to reach out and touch
someone. To elicit some emotion, whether it be group or individual, and
in the process, gently nudge those deep feelings that we all recognize
but often fail to acknowledge.
If humor is the basis for the story, well and good, try to be funny.
Often times, stories are too serious in some cases, and levity helps
break the tension to relieve the stress. If the story evokes sadness or
melancholy care must be taken not to end up with feelings of depression.
What then is Storytelling Magic
As I see it, the storyteller is really a teacher who sometimes preaches
a mini-sermon. Sometimes it is but a gentle lesson that is needed, but
with a bit of magical emphasis. It is not really gospel magic as such
but the lessons taught are just as valuable.
The good story falls into that category. I have gathered a group of
powerful stories and have added some basic magical twists that make each
story a bit more palatable. Some may find certain stories that are not
really to your liking and will say you could not do the material. I
would suggest you to read your story aloud and ask someone to listen as
you do. Play for the emotion of the story and forget about the magic
trick at the end. Many a story will stand-alone but your magical
expertise can make each story really meaningful to your listeners, and
you will be most pleased with results.
My task as a storyteller is to find the right story and apply the magic
as a means of emphasizing the moral or simply to punctuate the startling
climax of the story. Reading the stories, you might say they could
stand-alone. They can, but the production of a “something” or creating
an instantaneous change as the climax of the tale, enhances the telling
and helps your audience absorb and remember the story.
History as recounted by
Somewhere in the misty shadows of ancient
history there was once a civilization supposedly far more gifted and
experienced than that of Atlantis and Ancient Greece. Advanced building
skills, high level mathematical knowledge, astrological information and
social graces were the hallmarks of an advanced civilization that is
still unnamed and unexplored. Only brief mention of it was made in some
of the scrolls in the Library at Alexander and those were burned and
destroyed except for a few that were on loan at the time of the great
Casual mention is made in the translations from the thousands of clay
tables found in Mesopotamia and Sumaria, and undocumented folktales have
been told regarding religious rites and customs.
These people used a thirteen-month calendar similar to that used in
Ancient Egypt. Solar happenings determined the months and weeks, and if
it can be believed, their thirteenth month had but 20 days and was set
aside for the observations of religious events and ceremonies. In my
reading I was drawn to one of these ceremonies as being of particular
It seems that there was a custom of selecting an individual to be
honored and celebrated as High Mogoshi. The Mogoshi was fed and housed
by the populace. He lived in splendor in the center of the temple and
was given gifts and comforts by the people and the priests. The Mogshi
was trained in all the arts, educated by the priests and healers in all
things pertaining to the surrounding world. As his year of honor became
a national festival event, he was consulted on all matters concerning
the government and the welfare of the people. The High Mogoshi was
revered and worshiped as a god among men. Being so indulged, the Mogoshi
grew to be a larger than life figure and as civilizations function,
figure heads like this are loved by some and despised by others. His
granted favors became millstones for some and boondoggles for others.
His actions were just what was expected, but he could not please every
Then came the thirteenth month. Flags and banners were unfurled, the
people gathered, the priests pontificated, the rulers paraded and the
populace cheered as the High Mogoshi was summarily killed, cooked and
eaten in an elaborate ceremony we know today as the presidential
Bizarre Magick Essay
People ask me about what kind of magic I do
and sometimes it is difficult to explain. I think of it as being
esoteric by nature but, I don’t do magic circles or conjure demons. Does
any one do that anymore? To be sure, I cast a few spells now and then
and I burn incense, but not for the reason that some folks do today.
With great role models like Eugene Burger, Robert Neale, and Carl Herron
to look up to and past greats like Andruzzi, Shields and Cameron to
study and analyze, it is not really easy to compare that which I do with
what has been done before. I am essentially a storyteller and like Punx,
I believe that the magic I do simply emphasizes the moral or the point
of the story, and that more often than not, the story could, and some
say, probably should, stand-alone.
I continue to enjoy numerous writings about Bizarre Magic and where it
fits, if it does indeed, fit anywhere. As a storyteller, I want to touch
the soul if at all possible. Not to contain, consume or torment it, but
only gently touch and strum the heartstrings. By definition, bizarre
means something unusual, strange, odd, or even controversial. I don't
wish to intimidate or imitate when I tell a story but I want it to
really reach out and touch someone.
There are as many definitions of Bizarre Magic as there are magicians
who are doing strange, unusual, and controversial things. That which I
do and the tales that I tell are to me in that category and I have said
this before, “People may not remember my name or that magic that I
performed but they will remember how it made them feel.”
How far is bizarre? I have no answer. I do what I do with the idea that,
if you have a tale to tell, tell it well.
The real magic or magick is in the words.
In the Craft,
I like your super slight of
Your patter's avant-garde.
You're really good at what you do
But I don't want to take a card.
I don't want to make three piles
Or cut another deck.
You deal them out in reds and blacks,
Big deal, so what the heck?
You double under cut the cards
And shuffle like a pro,
But after sixty-seven tricks
You don't know when to go.
I like to watch your flourishes,
I know you practice hard,
But man, I know I'll fall asleep
Each time I take a card.
Conjure up a demon
With some great Magic spell
But please don't bore me silly
With more card tricks from Hell.
By Ed Solomon
Be careful of what you pretend to be,
Think about that, which others see.
Be what you want that sets you free
But always remember… you don't fool me.
Be mindful of whatever role you play.
Keep your facade both night and day.
Fool all your friends with what you say
But pray that you never… become that way.
Tell us your tale and spread some cheer
Let us behold the one that's near.
Tell now a tale of what brings you here
Then let us know we have… nothing to fear.
Be careful of what you pretend to be,
Think about that, which others see.
Be what you want that sets you free
But always remember… you don't fool me.
In my casual pursuit of the obscure and
bizarre bits of history, I recently found the following story. This
involves something more than a mere haunting in that it is more
harrowing than the presence of an apparition. Totally explainable and
yet frightfully unexpected, it was reported in Illustrated Police News
Paterson Demarest, a New Jersey grocer, was sitting alone in his living
room mourning the recent death of his young daughter, whose body, by
custom, lay ready for burial in the next room. He had been sitting
quietly through the night, grieving as any parent would. Just before
daybreak, he momentarily opened his eyes to be faced by a shrouded
figure. Materialized there before him was the 'dead' child reaching for
him, clasping her arms around his neck.
The child was real and she was alive. She had apparently suffered an
episode of narcolepsy, slipped into a coma and had been pronounced dead.
For a brief few moments she recovered and went searching for her beloved
father. Within a few moments she collapsed and was pronounced dead a
second time. Her body was buried at the previously arranged time for the
original funeral, her franticly distressed father standing trembling at
Only those of us who have buried a child or a grandchild can empathize
with the significance of this dark truth.
Judge Not Lest Ye Shall be Judged
Judge not a magician by how many double
lifts he can do.
Judge not the wonder of his cups and balls.
Judge not by how loud his music might be.
Judge not by how fast he can change his masks.
Judge not his strutting, gestures, or manipulative skills.
Judge him not by the way he treats his family or his assistant.
If you must judge, judge him by the way the treats his audience
or the guy that can do absolutely nothing for him, personally or
Let's Tell Our Stories
I thought I needed to share some thoughts.
This is not a presentation so if you are just here to learn tricks, this
will be a disappointment, I'm sure.
I have followed with interest lots of things about storytelling and
wanted to share these thoughts.
Anytime is a good time to tell stories. Out on the front steps in the
cool of the evening, sitting on the veranda in porch swings with your
friends and loved ones, sitting around the living room after a big
Sunday dinner. Anytime is a good time for telling stories.
The poet Langston Hughes in the first stanza of his poem, "Aunt Sue's
"Aunt Sue has a whole head full of stories.
Aunt sue has a whole heart full of stories.
Summer nights on the front porch,
Aunt Sue cuddles a bright-faced child
To her bosom and tells him stories."
Every family should have an Aunt Sue or an Uncle Louie to pass along the
stories that made up their lives and ours as well. Remember Uncle Remus?
The digest overflows with stories, whole heads and hearts full of
stories from the elders who still want to tell their stories and leave
the legacy of their experience and knowledge. Each time we lose one of
the elders it is like losing a library that we never had the chance to
When someone dies who has hoarded his or her financial wealth, those
monies and resources do not go with him or her, but eventually will be
used by some one, either an heir or the government. Some one will get
But when treasured stories are not shared and are taken to the grave,
they are lost forever.
The storyteller (like Gene Poinc) is a national treasure. Imagine what
history would have been lost if the oral tradition had never been
shared. What a tragic loss it would be to ignore our greatest strengths
on the digest.
If, for instance, were we able to go back and ask long departed
grandparents about our family history we would be enriched. For years I
tried to get my aging mother to use a small tape recorder and tell us of
her childhood and about her family. She hated mechanical things and
never did pass along the information. Now sisters, brothers, cousins,
and others who knew her are gone as well and those stories are gone
In our own lives, what have we done to insure that our loved ones know
our family history and traditions? Do you keep a journal, make cassette
tapes, or consciously make a point of telling episodic remembrances?
When I ask this of friends, all I get is excuses. "Nothing ever happened
in our family worth telling about," or "My kids aren't interested in
family history," or some such excuse. How very sad. You would be
surprised to learn that little Johnny would like to know that grandpa
fell out of an apple tree and broke his arm when he was little Johnny's
Ok, so we aren't talking about magic? But isn't there magic in the words
of every story? Storytelling is magic whether we make a coin vanish as a
part of the story or we produce some extraordinary objects from mid air.
La tee dah and yada yada yada. I know what you are thinking; the
ramblings of an old man. But let me pose this question. How long has it
been since you sat down with a young person and told them a true story?
A big whopping lie? A remembrance of lost love or a broken heart? A
gothic horror story about your Uncle Louie lost in a cornfield? Not
recently? Then you should.
Storytelling is Magic.
As I have gotten older I think I've
I've learned that you can't make somebody like you.
All you can do is entertain them and hope they give in.
I've learned that you can get by on charm and personality
for about ten minutes. After that you better have
something pretty interesting to show.
I've learned that it takes years to build trust and reputation,
and it only takes suspicion, not proof, to destroy it.
I've learned you shouldn't compare yourself to others.
They are more screwed up than you think.
I've learned the we are responsible for what we do,
unless we are celebrities.
I've learned regardless of how much fun it is to be an
entertainer at first, when the passion fades there had better
be a lot of money to take its place.
I've learned that you can't fool all the people all the time
But you can keep trying.
I've learned that 99% of the time when something
doesn't work you haven't practiced enough.
I've learned that the people you care about the most
are taken from you too soon and all the less important
ones just never go away.
I've learned that no matter how much I care,
Some people are just assholes.
The Story Teller
People have been telling stories, as long
as there have been people. Around the campfire, hunters and warriors
told of their exploits and acted out scenes from the hunt. These stories
took the rest of the people on strange and fearsome journeys where
darkness and fog or mist or the sound of a snarling beast turned
ordinary places into nightmarish places where nothing was as expected.
There were tales of supernatural creatures that people would fear. These
developed into bogeymen, monsters, demons, ghosts and evil spirits
lurking in the dark, waiting for a chance to strike.
We still tell these stories about heroes, villains and living legends.
The urban legends surround us even in our enlightened age. These kinds
of stories have a purpose, which is to warn young people of the dangers
that await them when they set out in the world on their own. We turn out
the lights or we leave but one candle burning. We sit close together and
tell the weirdest stories we know often including those passed down for
hundreds of years. The folk tales of long ago still have appeal for the
people of today. If the story is plausible enough, your flesh begins to
creep; you get Goosebumps and have a shaky, shivery, screamy feeling.
You hold your breath waiting for it to end and if something startling
happens, everyone gasps or jumps or screams. These sub-emotional, almost
primeval feelings have been described as the “Heeby Jeebies” or
sometimes the “Screamin’ meemies.”
As a storyteller the first thing to ask is “can I hold the audience with
the story alone?” If there were no magic, would they still want to hear
the story? If the answer is yes then I know I have a winner.
The best stories will touch some emotion in the audience. Love, hate,
fear, joy, sadness and even revulsion. So I ask myself each and every
time, will the story elicit some mental reactions from the audience? If
not, skip it. Do something else. Do a card trick. Take a card, any card.
Finding a card by any conventional method is not Bizarre Magic.
Finding it with a Ouija Board is a different story like having it appear
in the mouth of a grinning skull. That’s Bizarre.
Personalize the story and tell it like your were relating family
history. Don’t be afraid to open up to the audience. Hey, you’ve often
seen me cry over a story. Don’t be afraid to show real emotion. Relate
the story to an experience you once had and your audience will remember
similar experiences in their own lives. This is good advice if you want
them to remember your name, your personality and feel that they know you
as a friend.
The answer to the question “where?” is
summed up in one word. READ. Novels, History, Science Fiction, Fantasy,
Poetry, Fairy Tales, Classics, Folk Lore, Ghost Stories, the want ads,
Ann Landers and Dear Abby, News of the Weird in the newspapers, current
events or just anything and anywhere.
Experience will lead you to a story line that hits you just right and
has magic written all over it.
The Story Line
Now that you have a story in mind what do
you want to do magically? Have you the props that will fit the story?
Here is the old problem of which came first the chicken or the egg.
Often the props you see in the antique store or the flea market, which
is my case usually, often instantly say buy me because you have been
looking for just the right box or prop to go with a story you have in
mind. Other times you have a story and need to punctuate the story
climax or bring out a message.
Like a good magic trick or routine, your story must have a beginning,
middle and an ending. The ending is your big payoff, your surprise and
here is where you make your point. Everything starts with imagination,
if you can imagine it...you can do it. A story of a personal experience
can take simple effect and make it something memorable for your
So let’s talk about imagination.
Where does imagination come from? For that matter, where does
inspiration come from?
These questions which have baffled and plagued the human mind for
centuries are still unanswered or often answered with another question
or hypotheses. Are these gifts a part of the intellect or are they a
residue from a past life
Experience? Is it cellular memory? Who can say?
For me, in my own way of thinking, imagination is what is left after you
have been exposed to education and have experienced some remarkable
individual like the little old lady who was my grandmother.
As a child, growing up in a small town, this one individual tweaked my
imagination early in life and set fire to my curiosity. She answered my
childish questions honestly and provided me with an insatiable quest for
Many of her sayings still ring in my mind. " Never go to bed empty
headed" or "A day that goes by without learning something is a totally
The stories she made up never allowed for violence or mishap. No misdeed
was left unpunished. Happy endings were required and no one ever lied or
died. There was a miraculous material called "Life Powder" that could be
sprinkled on every hurt or injury so that misadventures could be
OH! If that were only true.
Her home was filled with books. Everything from the classics to the best
sellers was on her shelves. There were stacks of National Geographic
that went back to the very first issues. Histories and anthologies, the
Book of Knowledge in twelve wonderful volumes and on and on.
Each night she would read from the encyclopedia so that she would not go
to bed empty-headed. My world was one of make believe with my
grandmother taking the lead and asking from time to time "and then what
do you think happened?" My answers were turned into object lessons and
when I could not come up with answers to her replies she would say, "use
"What is imagination, grandmother?"
"It is what you hear in heart and see in
your mind.” She would say to me. "It is your passport to anywhere you
want to go and your permit to do what is right enough to do." "Develop
your imagination and your imagination will develop your mind." "Use your
imagination and you will never be lonely."
"It is expected that you will do well, nothing else is acceptable." "Do
That little old lady was born in Kansas in 1885. She came to Oklahoma in
the run of '89. Graduated from the first graduating class in 1894, was
one of the first women to graduate from college before Oklahoma became a
state in 1907. She had a degree in Latin and Greek, which was the custom
at that time and she raised three children.
This most unconventional woman in a most conventional time, became my
mentor and sometimes tormentor. This was my source of knowledge and
wonderment. She gave me my foundation for my persistent quest for seeing
things in a different light and listening to a different drummer. She
instilled the Magick in my life. She sparked my imagination and here at
seventy years old, the early messages I learned at her knee are still
with me and I am sharing them with you. Everything starts with
imagination, if you can imagine it...you can do it.
Setting the Mood
You have a story; you have the right props
now what about presentation. With the right setting and the right mood
the simplest effect can receive an overwhelming response.
A single lighted candle in the center of the table, a dim or dark room,
a bit of incense burning, some soft quiet mood music. Hey, it works like
seduction. What ever turns you on?
The props again make the magic happen. A rubber skull can’t replace the
real thing. A wind up rat can’t hold a candle to the real thing. Yet, do
you remember my story of the Plain Brown Box? Nothing elaborate, nothing
fancy but with a story like that, who needs fancy props? Painting a
devil head on your square circle isn’t going to make it Bizarre. It
shows a great lack of imagination but then so do many of the standard
effects that we own but do not use. Bizarre thumb tip magic? I think not
but then why not. No one is suppose to see the thumb tip anyway so why
not do something Bizarre with one. Please don’t put out a cigarette in
one or vanish a wrinkled rag.
As a collector of oddities, charms and nostrums, my role as a senti-mentalist
doesn’t need costuming. The words are the magic. The delivery of the
line, the raising of an eyebrow, looking over the top of the glasses,
stroking the beard, becoming emotional over lines, timing the pauses,
expressing rage or anger, sorrow or sadness, joy and jubilation. These
are the tricks of the trade, the tools of the actor playing the role of
a magician. This is what storytelling is all about.
Brother Shadow, Carl Herron, in his infinite wisdom, sums it up this
way. “Don't just look at the big things, everything is made from many
tiny parts. Don't overlook anything.
Listen to the children, where many great truths are learned.
Listen to the elders where there is rich lore based on memory. Think of
yourself as a sponge, absorbing everything. Nothing is too insignificant
to overlook. In each tiny bit a key may be found. I learned at a very
age from my grandmother who said over and over to me, "Listen with a
wise ear, it makes the spirit big."
Read your story out loud, record the story
on tape and listen to it over and over again. Re-edit your story and
eliminate those parts that add to redundancy. Simplify. Experiment with
voice characterizations. Change voice for different emotions as well as
When you have re-written your script edit in the pauses, the sighs, the
breath emphasis and the voice inflections you want to use to “sell” your
story. Don’t get in a hurry. Wait for audience reaction. Take your cues
from audience response. Tell your story to your friends and family to
help you get use to the flow of the story. Record again and listen
again. Record a version to take with you and play in the car. Listen to
your words. Play the audience. If the story can stand alone, tell it as
it is. Do your “magic” to emphasize the punch line or objective. The
words are your real magic.
Reflections From the
Other Side of the Mirror
As the years slip by
I pause and reflect
On the passage of time
And the things I neglect
To do or to say.
As the people I know
Show wrinkles and gray
I've come to respect
The things that they say,
If they are talking to me.
But I wonder if people still worry,
I wonder if people still care?
I wonder what's happened to loving
Answer me that, if you dare.
For today is yesterday's tomorrow.
Think about that which I say.
To make the best of tomorrow
Then make the best of today
For today is yesterday's tomorrow.
Life is so fragile you see.
Do what you can for each other today.
Forever never can be…
I came back from ICBM with many fond
memories. There were some
interesting performances and good fellowship. There were quick meals and
conversations over cups of coffee. It is an experience unlike any other
convention or gathering and having to come back to the real world is
difficult, not knowing if you will be coming back next year or if others
will indeed be back.
I found myself reminiscing on the return flight and thought I would
share my thoughts on the digest. The ramblings of an old man? I think
Looking back on nearly sixty years of magic there many things that I
to remember and somehow can not. There are things I don’t want to
remember that I simply can't forget.
I remember the loss of fellow performers, students of the art,
of things magical....... Their names are not important now but they were
then. Names I can't remember but faces that I can...and do. Acts and
performances both good and bad. I remember.
People that got side tracked or dropped out of the magic scene
for one reason or another. The pointless and petty arguments that
the back stage world and made the headlines as well. They are just
recalled in some scholarly book being recorded somewhere by someone else
remembering and writing down the memories.
I do remember the fun it was to develop some seemingly wonderful routine
and share it with the guys at the magic club who could care less how
you worked and practiced. They were there for the fun and camaraderie
the most part.
Soon, when they pass on and one of the new guys says “Ed who“ or “Bob
I don’t want to remember any more.
Maybe someday someone will read this and say “ Who the heck was
He was just another of those old guys who thought a bit differently than
most and loved a good story.
In the Craft,
Malachi 3:3 says: 'He will sit as a refiner
and purifier of silver.'
This verse puzzled some women in a Bible study and they wondered what
this statement Meant about the character and nature of God.
One of the women offered to find out the process of refining Silver and
get back to the group at their next Bible Study.
That week, the woman called a silversmith and made an Appointment to
watch him at work. She didn't mention anything about the reason for her
interest beyond her curiosity about the process of refining Silver.
As she watched the silversmith, he held a piece of silver over the fire
and let it heat up. He explained that in refining silver, one needed to
hold the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest
as to burn away all the impurities.
The woman thought about God holding us in such a hot spot; then she
thought again about the verse that says: 'He sits as a refiner and
purifier of silver.' She asked the silversmith if it was true that he
had to s it there in front of the fire the whole time.
The man answered that yes, he not only had to sit there holding the
silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the silver the entire time it was
in the fire. If the silver was left a moment too long in the flames, it
would be destroyed.
The woman was silent for a moment. Then she asked the silversmith, 'How
do you know when the silver is fully refined?'
He smiled at her and answered, 'Oh, that's easy -- when I see my image
If today you are feeling the heat of the fire, remember that God has his
eye on you and will keep watching you until He sees His image in you.
This very moment, someone needs to know that God is watching over them.
And, whatever they're going through, they'll be a better person in the
'Life is a coin. You can spend it anyway you wish, but you can only
spend it once.'
With apologies to Gilbert and Sullivan
Nomolos has these things that he sells, He's a dealer in magical spells.
In blessings and curses and ever filled purses, in prophecies, witches
If you want a proud foe to make tracks, if you'd melt a rich uncle in
wax, then you'll have to look in on the resident Djinn,
Send an Email or maybe a FAX.
We've a first rate assortment of magic, and for raising a posthumous
shade, with effects that are comic or tragic, there's no cheaper Wiz in
Love philter, we've plenty of it, and for knowledge if any one burns,
We're keeping a very small prophet, a prophet who brings us unbounded
For he can prophesy with the wink of an eye, peep with security into
futurity, sum up a history, clear up a mystery, humor proclivity for a
He has answers oracular, bogies spectacular, tetrapods tractical,
mirrors so magical, facts astronomical, solemn and comical,
And if you want it, he makes a reduction on taking a quantity.
If there is anything anyone lacks, he can find it in one of his stacks,
but you'll have to look in on the resident Djinn, send an Email or maybe
He can raise a host of ghosts, and that without reflectors,
And creepy things with wings, and gaunt and grisly specters;
He can fill you crowds of shrouds, and horrify you vastly;
He can rack your brains with chains, and gibberings grim and ghastly.
Then if you plan it, he changes organity, with and urbanity, full of
satanity, vexes humanity, with an inanity, fatal to vanity, driving your
foes to the verge of insanity.
Barring tautology, in demonology, lectro-biology, mystic-nosology,
Spirit-phiology, high-class astrology, such is his knowledge, he isn't
the man to require an apology.
DeNomolos has these things that he sells, he's a dealer in magical
In blessings and curses and ever filled purses, in prophecies, witches
And if anything anyone lacks, he can find it in one of his stacks,
But, you'll have to look in on the resident Djinn, Send an Email or
maybe a FAX.
The Language of the Art
A commentary on contemporary card magic
Being a non-card person, by choice not by
chance, I marvel at the work of fellow magicians who can “entertain?”
for hours doing card tricks. A simple deck of cards, which fits nicely
into the shirt pocket, provides hours and hours of self-entertainment
for a multitude that seemingly have too much time on their hands. In my
desire to understand the mind set of these wonder workers, I have read
many descriptions of self-working effects and even tried to study some
of the works of the well recognized card experts but I always get hung
up in the language which is obviously in a foreign tongue for the
uninitiated. Please understand that I admire and respect those who have
the skill and the patience to learn this form of magic. I have neither
but I do try to understand and try not to go to sleep when friends
perform some cardboard miracle. Again the language in the explanation is
baffling enough. Watching the moves in slow motion doesn't even help
when the explanation sounds like this.
First have a card selected by your favorite method and returned to the
center of the pack, Double undercut your frim-fram and piddle on your
biddle. Injog your out jog and back flip your blue jeans with the nozzle
grip and export your frazzelstat to the mechanics grip and shuffle off
At this point double lift your fiddle-faddle and expose your fernortin
while getting a little finger break, broken by Maxie Von Schnalde. Run
your broken finger down both sides of the cards and square your deck and
get the wagons in a circle. Push off the top card onto the bottom card
and sandwich the flipendale move silently as you continue to push off
the barflies. Side steal your neighbors drink. Look up at this point and
see if your audience is still there. If they have lost interest just go
ahead and play with yourself and nobody will notice as long as your keep
the deck in the opposite hand. Snorkel the left packet into the right
and delicately spread the remaining cards in a semi-dimi squirkle,
noting the frabble grabble position in the dextermous. Do this while
holding the top two cards in your mouth as you try to explain why you
are here in the first place and then make three piles on the table and
take a deep breath, sniff each pile and sit back and see what the fates
have dealt you in this first step on the royal road to card magic.
Remember push off and lift off are two different positions, neither of
which should be done in public and your audience doesn't give a ratsbutt
how many ways you can do a double lift. They could care less if you
triumph or try to get out of this world. They much prefer McDonald take
out burgers than McDonalds Aces. They get a kick out of watching you do
multiple one handed cuts, un-ambitious card locations and are
suppressing laughter as they wait to see you do fifty two pickup with
your own deck of cards. Remember, keep practicing. Someday this will
really pay off and you’ll clean up in magic. Buy a good broom.
The Law of the Garbage Truck
One day I hopped in a taxi and we took off
for the airport. We were driving in the right lane when suddenly a black
car jumped out of a parking space right in front of us. My taxi driver
slammed on his breaks, skidded, and missed the other car by just inches!
The driver of the other car whipped his head around and started yelling
My taxi driver just smiled and waved at the guy; and I mean, he was
really friendly. So I asked, 'Why did you just do that? This guy almost
ruined your car and sent us to the hospital!'
This is when my taxi driver taught me what I now call, 'The Law of the
He explained that many people are like garbage trucks. They run around
full of garbage, full of frustration, full of anger, and full of
disappointment. As their garbage piles up, they need a place to dump it
and sometimes they'll dump it on you.
Don't take it personally. Just smile, wave, wish them well, and move on.
Don't take their garbage and spread it to other people at work, at home,
or on the streets.
The bottom line is that successful people do not let garbage trucks take
over their day. Life's too short to wake up in the morning with regrets,
so.....'Love the people who treat you right. Pray for the ones who
We determine whether something will be a blessing or a curse by the way
we choose to see it!
By Ed Solomon
Somewhere I put some memories in a
place I that I could find.
Stored away in boxes, in the corner of my mind.
Like props you're missing and you need them in a bind.
I know just where I put them, in the corner of my mind.
And I remember patter sets but not the grown up kind,
Just kiddy conversations, in the corner of my mind.
The magic books and programs, and convention things we'd find.
They're all among the memories in the corner of my mind.
The silks and silly card tricks won't be too hard to find.
I'll know I'll come across them, in the corner of my mind.
These are among my treasures and to pitch them I've declined.
They're stored in dusty boxes in the corner of my mind.
So when I'm gone you explore the things I left behind.
Don't toss out the memories from the corner of my mind.
Time to Laugh at Ourselves
This came as a gift and must be shared.
It came to me 'cause somebody cared.
YOU KNOW THAT YOU’RE A MAGICIAN WHEN...
You worry about spending certain change in your pocket.
You bottom deal when playing Go Fish.
You carry 6 decks on you.
You have a deck of cards, some half dollars, or some quarters within
arms reach of the toilet.
You have to take Loops off your wrist before getting in the shower.
You forget you are wearing a TT until you realize that you can't type
You have your local magic shop on speed dial.
The only unbent forks in your house are plastic.
You can't find one of your cards, and it's in a guy's pocket across the
You spend $20 for a half dollar
A Bike to you is a deck of cards
All your bottles of water have the caps inside the bottle
Your left hand is constantly in a mechanics grip, even without cards
You have more decks of cards than you've had hot dinners
You tenkai palm a pop tart
You have an ace of spades taped to the back window of your car.
You’re looking for your cards on the ceiling at the mall.
You can't go out in public without being asked to Levitate.
All your pocket change is bent.
Your friends watch their forks as they eat in front of you.
You always have flash paper in your wallet.
You've opened a can of soup and found someone's signed dollar.
The term "cups and balls" doesn't make you snicker
You have a chip in your tooth from biting the wrong quarter
Everything you see makes you think of how to vanish, palm or produce it
You get emotional when you have to throw away a deck of cards
You never throw old decks away because "I can make something out of it"
You decide what clothes to buy based on how many props you can carry
You have a problem counting four cards.
You fear metal detectors.
You watch intently whenever there's someone playing cards in a film,
just to see if they're using a Bicycle deck
You take out a deck of cards and all your friends run out of the room,
You always walk around with three different decks of cards in your
pockets because each one is set up for a different trick.
You pull the four aces out of the deck, only to lose them back into the
deck, just so you can find them again!
Instead of just spreading four cards and showing that there are four –
you count them!
You refer to everyday objects as "ordinary".
You can have a heated debate whether is pronounced "Day" or "Die".
You have more than a dozen open decks of cards and cartons of unopened
You accidentally do a double while playing "Go Fish!”
You are the only one that can have fun with a Blank Deck.
Every coin that you receive gets "accidentally" palmed.
You have 101 retorts for the question "How did you do that?"
You have a dog named, "Houdini".
Someone asks you for your card you give out the Ace of Spades.
You have never been to the loony bin, yet you own a straight jacket.
No one will play cards with you.
The oldest deck of cards in use in your possession was purchased a week
ago and you're ready to toss it.
The thought of bending or writing on a playing card doesn't throw you
for a loop anymore.
It matters to you how someone shuffles your deck.
You back-palm your movie ticket and produce it out of thin air.
Someone asks for a piece of rope, and you pull one from your pocket.
You pay more for blank cards than those that are printed
The Raven to you is not a bird.
When you play the game "cheat" YOU ACTUALLY CHEAT!
All your coins are signed by other people.
You shuffle a deck of cards and none of them change order.
After viewing magic on TV, everyone in the room looks at you asks,
"How'd they do that?" And, all you do is smile and say, "It's really
easy if you think about it, but magicians can tell." And you're really
thinking, "How the heck did they do that?"
You can say with full honesty that you handle a bike better than Lance
You shake a person's hand with your electric touch on without noticing.
Instead of asking someone for the time, you just steal their watch.
Asked to shuffle the cards, you have to stop and think how to do a real
"The clock of life is wound but
And no man has the power,
To tell just when the hands will stop
at a late or early hour.
Now is the only time you own.
Live, love, and toil with a will.
Place not your faith in time alone.
For the clock may soon be still."
~ Unknown ~
Is there a magic cutoff period when
offspring become accountable for their own Actions? Is there a wonderful
moment when parents can become detached spectators in the lives of their
children and shrug, "It's their life," and feel nothing?
When I was in my twenties, I stood in a hospital corridor waiting for
doctors to put a few stitches in my son's chin. I asked, "When do you
stop worrying?" The nurse said, "When they get out of the accident
stage." My God just smiled faintly and said nothing.
When I was in my thirties, I sat on a little chair in a classroom and
heard how one of my children talked incessantly, disrupted the class,
and were headed for a career making license plates. As if to read my
mind, a teacher said, "Don't worry, they all go through this stage and
then you can sit back, relax and enjoy them."
God just smiled faintly and said nothing.
When I was in my forties, I spent a lifetime waiting for the phone to
ring, the cars to come home, the front door to open. A friend said,
"They're trying to find themselves. Don't worry in a few years, you can
stop worrying. They'll be
Adults." God just smiled faintly and said nothing.
By the time I was 50, I was sick & tired of being vulnerable. I was
still worrying over my children, but there was a new wrinkle. There was
nothing I could do about it.
God just smiled faintly, said nothing, but giggled quietly.
I continued to anguish over their failures, be tormented by their
frustrations and absorbed in their disappointments. My friends said that
when my kids got married I could stop worrying and lead my own Life. I
wanted to believe that, but I was haunted by my friends' warm smiles,
and the occasional, "You look pale. Are you all right? Call me the
minute you get home. Are you depressed about something?"
Can it be that parents are sentenced to a lifetime of worry? Is concern
for one another handed down like a torch to blaze the trail of human
frailties and the fears of the unknown? Is concern a curse or is it a
virtue that elevates us to the highest form of life? God slapped His
knee and laughed out loud.
One of my children became quite irritable recently, saying to me, "Where
were you? I've been calling for 3 days, and no one answered I was
worried," I smiled a warm smile. The torch has been passed. Someone has
said that having children is giving God permission to keep your heart
outside of your body. God nodded in full agreement.
Things Learned the Hard
(Paraphrased by DeNomolos)
1. Never, under any circumstances, take a
sleeping pill and a laxative on the same night of a performance.
2. If you had to identify, in one word, the reason why the magic has not
achieved, and never will achieve, its full potential, that word would be
3. There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
4. People who want to share their magical views with you almost never
want you to share yours with them.
5. You should not confuse your career with your life.
6. Nobody cares if you can't perform well. Just get up and do something.
7. Never lick a steak knife.
8. The most destructive force in the universe is gossip.
9. You will never find anybody who can give you a clear and compelling
reason why we observe daylight savings time to start and end our
10. There comes a time when you should stop expecting other people to
make a big deal about your act. That time is about age eleven.
11. The one thing that unites all human beings, regardless of age,
gender, religion, economic status or ethnic background, is that, deep
down inside, we ALL believe that we are above average magicians
12. A person, who is nice to you, but rude to the waiter, is not a nice
(This is very important. Pay attention. It never fails.)
13. Your FRIENDS love you anyway.
14. Never be afraid to try something new.
Remember that a lone amateur built the Ark.
A large group of professionals built the Titanic.
15. Life is too short to watch a bunch of %#@&** card tricks.