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Topic: Magic Bistro
Message: Posted by: Gerry Walkowski (Aug 9, 2013 03:12AM)
Did this close?

Gerry
Message: Posted by: Matthew W (Aug 9, 2013 07:32AM)
Yep. I tried going yesterday and it was gone. Sad, there was good information.
Message: Posted by: MickNZ (Aug 12, 2013 06:46PM)
James shut down the board about a month ago unfortunately. I think part of the reason was that more people didn't get actively involved.
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (Aug 12, 2013 07:43PM)
From what I heard and saw first hand it was the same old group of a handful of guys ruing the roost, most of which left or were banned from here so there was a lot of bashing this place, until they decided to campaign to be let back on here.

It's a shame as James seems quite credible yet that was not the reputation the Bistro had. Most of the guys I would have been interested in were either banned from there or left long ago.
Message: Posted by: Al Angello (Aug 13, 2013 09:30PM)
James does over 300 shows a year, he has written at least one book in the past two years that I know of. His marketing course requires him to be in daily contact with his students, and coupled with a young growing family I don't know how the magic Bistro lasted as long as it did.

Unlike other magic forums the magic Bistro only appealed to full time professionals which is probably why it never really took off.

The real problem with the magic bistro was that there was far too much political conversation and not enough magical conversation which became quite boring.
Message: Posted by: charliecheckers (Aug 16, 2013 10:14PM)
I just tried to go on to the Bistro as well. I guess it has been longer than I guessed since I was last there. I really liked the pod casts offered there. The site design left a lot to be desired though and the topics were the same as here with fewer, but the same contributors except as noted in the posts above. I will miss the times I wandered over to the Bistro for an occasional glance though.
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (Aug 16, 2013 10:59PM)
I had several members try to get me to join there, so I checked it out for over a month with these guys and I will say I didn't at all care for it. It seemed to be VERY kids entertainer-based, the same handful of guys almost dictating the entire place, and extreme bullying by the same two or three self-appointed experts. Even James seemed very put off by it from my perspectives. I actually felt for him as it seemed apparent that it was falling short of his hopes and expectations. Very confrontational if you didn't agree with those being the most vocal, all of which were either banned from here (Cafe) or "choose to leave" (depending who's story you accept).

Very little entertainment was actually discussed and even less (rarely if any) business of entertaining. James would try to start what seemed to be a good or serious topic and in a few short posts it got sucked into these same guys control.

Those that did participate seemed to be seeking praise and stroking for no apparrent reason other than being loud.

Like Al mentioned about James marketing and performing level, marketing was rarely discussed other than very basic kids performing levels. It really wasn't inviting to regional or national professionals just local kids performers.

This combined with all the Café-bashing and specific members-bashing made it not a place where anyone I knew there felt accepted or truly invited to participate. Anything other than kids magic such as mentalism, entertainment business, hypnosis, was rarely ever discussed and I must say some of the worst insight and advice offered on any forum I'd ever seen. The nuts seemed to be running the asylum. I truly felt sorry for James.

Al's quote: "the magic Bistro only appealed to full time professionals which is probably why it never really took off" I never saw the professionals you referred to or at least any professionals other than the same handful of kids performers.

While I respect Al and typically enjoy his insights (and applaud James efforts) I strongly disagree with him on this one.
Message: Posted by: Ken Northridge (Aug 17, 2013 07:03AM)
James made a post venting his frustration with the lack of participation and announced The Bistro would be closing in a week, and possibly reopening after the summer. I don’t know what was said but it didn’t last the week he said it would. So, there is still the possibility he will try it again this fall.

James really tried to make it work. It seemed to me he read every post and commented whenever possible. I thought it was a nice alternative to the Café and especially enjoyed the respectful discussions on the politics and religion room. I know that’s not for everyone but I found it interesting how these subjects coincided with magic. For example, I feel that being conservative minded is an advantage for the professional entertainer/business owner. Now, many of you would probably jump all over that statement. But that was the fun of it, and like I said, for the most part it was respectful.

As far as the bad advice that Mindpro mentioned, there’s plenty of that here too. Perhaps the only difference is The Bistro doesn’t have Mindpro and Danny Doyle to straighten everyone out! Seriously, that’s one of the main reasons I participate in these forums. When I see someone give bad advice or a narrow minded opinion, I feel the need to straighten them out, or at least balance the discussion with a different point of view.

Anyway, I gained a ton of respect for James and found him to be a hard worker and very smart. If he doesn’t reopen the Bistro, I hope he will at least post here from time to time.
Message: Posted by: Al Angello (Aug 17, 2013 12:10PM)
Mindpro has a point. To some the bickering stood out, to Ken and I we learned a lot there. Lets face it there are nut jobs everywhere. Yes there was no Danny Doyle, or Mindpro there, but the Mark Lewis haters came out of the wood work just to have their chance to insult him.

Mindpro
Before I joined the Bistro I was very bad at marketing. The marketing tips, PM advise, and incentive from others I picked up at the Bistro has literally changed the way I do business. It was not just James, but a combination of all the other working pro's there, who convinced me that marketing would be the key to my success.

The magic bistro was a lot of fun, but the political, and religious conversation there was a big turn off for me. I'm not the kind of guy to back down from a fight, and the bistro had a lot of guys who knew how to make me and Mark Lewis very angry.
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (Aug 17, 2013 02:02PM)
Hey Al I'm glad you took a lot of marketing wisdom from the Bistro, unfortunately PM advice doesn't help anyone or the forum, other than the person receiving the PM. I couldn't agree more about the religious and political turnoffs. After my first visit I was extremely put off my this, and by some of these names you mention. I was done with it. But as I said a few guys asked me to give it a bit longer of a chance believing I could add something to the forum, but after a month of popping in and out with a couple of these guys, I didn't think it was very professional, but more like a magic club.

I just never saw much business being properly discussed there. Also I didn't see much being shared. It seemed to usually go like this: someone (or James) would post a genuine question or good prospective topic. Then literally within a few posts, one of the "vocal experts" would squash it, slam it or make the person asking it being inferior or like a fool. Then others would join him on the slamming. Some would stand up to the person, only for the entire thread to be highjacked into the person becoming louder and perhaps trying to justify their skewed perceptions, other times it would never return to the topic. This happened over and over again.

The police magician used it more as a blog about himself rather than ever seeming to contribute to the progression of the thread. He seemed like a nice guy, but along with others did not seem in the best interest of progress, participation by others and sharing, or a level of professional operation.

The whole Mark Lewis thing, it speaks for itself. It follows him wherever he goes, and while I'm sure he's a nice guy, simply put it is off-putting to many, I'd even say most. And heaven forbid if you get on his target list. They'd surely never return. James had to be aware of this and I'm sure didn't expect to have to be forced to mediate or get involved in the middle of it.

I know many that joined believing there would be a great deal of business and marketing from professionals perspectives given James' business and marketing experience and level. I just never saw it, but am glad it helped you Al, that is great and made it all worth all the bs for you I'm sure.

It's hard to express this without it seeming like it's pointed towards James, it's not. I have the greatest respect for him from what I know and have heard about him. He seems quite open minded about sharing his knowledge while also being opening minded to learning himself.

But it also made me realize that although many there constantly based the Café, The Magic Café has set the bar or the standard for forums in this industry. It may not be perfect, but none will ever be. The Bistro's proceeding and gauage of interest, success and participation, like other forums that have come and gone, have had to follow in the shadow of the Magic Café and the bar that it's set.

I also know there was a thread there about me, which was shared with me and it was filled with so much incorrect information, assumptions, unwarranted slamming and info offered as factual that were form people yapping about something or someone they obviously knew nothing about. It was quite hysterical. My point to it is it allowed me to see who and how much was dealing in reality or uninformed, uneducated opinions from those not in the know and if it happened in that thread I can only image about others.

My advice is for James to regroup, remember where he is operating now (so much seemed very foreign-based while putting down the U.S. and it's performers and type of preferences and markets, yet two of the three doing this are now trying to make a living here in the states. That was EXTREMELY off-putting. Also I also believe forums should have separate areas for amateurs, beginners & semi-pros, and then one for actual working professionals. Anytime you let all the animals run free in the same pen is going to be harder to control and get out of hand. Just a few more thoughts.
Message: Posted by: Al Angello (Aug 17, 2013 02:04PM)
WHOOPS
I think we both posted at the same time.

Two perfect examples of the kind of friends I made at the Bistro are right here on this page.

My good friend Mick from New Zealand who helped me a lot with my performing technique by watching my video's, and sending me email advise.

I attended a Ken Northridge show he bought me lunch and helped me a lot with my post card mailings.

I also hooked up with Ken Scott on a couple of his local shows and dinner. Ken gave me valuable BOR advise, and more post card mailing advise.

I spent a wacky afternoon with The Great Zucchini watching him make a room full of 4 year olds march around like little soldiers.

These were experiences that I experienced at the magic Bistro, and I have not even touched the PM's, phone calls and email messages I received from James Munton, Jolly Roger, and Mark Lewis.
Message: Posted by: Al Angello (Aug 17, 2013 02:12PM)
We also disagree on facebook. I'm glad we can get together here and share our experiences.

BTW Mindpro
I'm working on a facebook bomb shell booking story.
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (Aug 17, 2013 04:14PM)
Cool Al, can't wait to hear about it. I'm sure you probably took much more form the Bistro since you are a kid and family performer which is what much of the content was about, so that makes sense.
Message: Posted by: PaulPacific (Aug 17, 2013 11:01PM)
I enjoyed the interviews. It's a shame they are gone.

As for the rest of the Bistro, I did enjoy my first year there and put my heart and sole(!) into my posts. I fell out with Munton and wasn't on at all during the last year or so.
Message: Posted by: Dynamike (Aug 20, 2013 08:29PM)
I was invited to join by Jolly Roger. At first it was fun. But when James did not stop the few members from bullying me I quit posting there. Al is a witness to it.
Message: Posted by: MickNZ (Aug 20, 2013 08:47PM)
I wasn't into the political or religious discussion on there personally, so I simply didn't read it. Never quite understood why people said they had a problem with those sort of discussions yet still kept reading it every single day :)
Message: Posted by: Al Angello (Aug 21, 2013 07:37AM)
Mike is right there were a few loud mouth red necks there who enjoyed saying impolite things.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Aug 21, 2013 11:41AM)
[quote]
On 2013-08-20 21:47, MickNZ wrote:
I wasn't into the political or religious discussion on there personally, so I simply didn't read it. Never quite understood why people said they had a problem with those sort of discussions yet still kept reading it every single day :)
[/quote]

So true Mick!!! As you all know, I loved those topics and the way they often intertwined with magic. I never understood why people complained about them when all they had to do was ignore those areas of the forum. I miss the Bistro...........but life moves on! JR
Message: Posted by: jamiedoyle (Aug 21, 2013 04:50PM)
I miss the Bistro
I'm not going out on a limb when I state that there were many areas of the Bistro that had great advice and many of us sharing routines, ideas, tips, gags, bits of business and such. I do hope it returns.
Message: Posted by: Dynamike (Aug 21, 2013 05:28PM)
[quote]
I never understood why people complained about them when all they had to do was ignore those areas of the forum.
[/quote]
But Starpower and Paddy used to follow my post everywhere on the forum for harassment. That is why I ignored it totally.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Aug 21, 2013 07:00PM)
[quote]
On 2013-08-21 18:28, Dynamike wrote:
[quote]
I never understood why people complained about them when all they had to do was ignore those areas of the forum.
[/quote]
But Starpower and Paddy used to follow my post everywhere on the forum for harassment. That is why I ignored it totally.
[/quote]

I was unaware of that Mike. That was a shame. If you had brought that to mine or James's attention, they would have been reprimanded. Sorry that happened. JR
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (Aug 21, 2013 07:34PM)
[quote]
On 2013-08-20 21:47, MickNZ wrote:
I wasn't into the political or religious discussion on there personally, so I simply didn't read it. Never quite understood why people said they had a problem with those sort of discussions yet still kept reading it every single day :)
[/quote]

I think it's because it allowed you to better understand these people and who you were dealing with whether you enjoyed it/them or not. You learn quickly who knows what and who's full of bs or themselves. That is also part of the point. For those that did seem to go there regularly to get into the topics of magic of the business side, there was often little or nothing new, the only new posts were the political and religious stuff. So you check it out, get more discouraged and eventually choose not to return.

It was also very odd in many ways. Two of the hottest topics and trends over the last 5 years or so has been in mentalism (so many magician's trying, switching or adding mental magic or mentalism) and marketing (especially with social median, SEO, etc.). I mean these have probably been the hot-topics everywhere else - here as well as on other forums. Yet at the Bistro, little or often nothing. Again I credit this to the fact that the vast majority of those there were kids or family performers on a local level. This might as well just have been a kids magic forum.

I noticed anytime Paul Pacific or others tried to contribute mentalism or business it was easily squashed or unsupported. Some of the advice and perceptions on hypnosis was some of the worst I have ever seen. I went there with the intention of some basic knowledge of James and his business knowledge and marketing programs, so I would have thought it would have been more business and the business of performing oriented. While Al seems to have taken away some of this, I really failed to see it. There were times that weeks or maybe even months went by with no activity in those forums.

Then of course Mark Lewis offering his bizarre insights on almost every topic in every forum as a professor know it all, which was off-putting to the vast majority. Those that know him may take him with a grain of salt but many other don't. He seems to know this and enjoy the game which while entertaining to himself, was not so much to others or to encourage their participation. Hence the same old group of participants.
Message: Posted by: James Munton (Aug 22, 2013 01:21PM)
Hi everyone,

Thanks for the comments about the Bistro.

The site began as an experiment. I wanted to see if it would be possible to have a completely unmoderated forum. My hope was that people would be mature enough to moderate themselves. It would be free of advertising, so we wouldn’t be beholden to anyone. People could talk about anything they wanted. I saw it as a coffee shop or bar, where we could hang out together.

I quickly realized the impossibility of having an unmoderated forum after a number of very nasty fights broke out.

So I banned a couple of people, but I think the damage was done and we didn’t truly ever recover. A lot of people came to the site during that time and were turned off by what they saw. I don’t blame them.

Then there was Mark Lewis. A lot of people dislike Mark. MANY people told me to ban him because of his argumentative style. I could never understand why they couldn’t simply choose to ignore him.

And I did actually ban him for a while. It made no difference to the quantity and quality of posts. If anything they declined.

Many people like Mindpro have complained about the site suggesting that there were not enough threads about the subjects that interested them. I always had the same reply - “so start some!” One guy asked me to start a section on bizarre magic which I did and then he never posted a single thing!

My experience was that the people who complained the most, also contributed the least!

But it is untrue to suggest there wasn’t any good information there. There was a huge amount of good stuff. If people took the time to read some of my discussions with Mark Lewis they would find more real world, in-the-trenches information than most “marketing” courses provide. Whatever you think about Mark Lewis, he is a performer and has made a living doing it for a long time. Which is more than can be said about the average armchair expert who spends more time posting on magic forums than actually performing.

There was one thread in particular shortly before we closed about performing trade shows. There was absolute gold in that thread. And that was just one of many, many topics that gave people the real inside scoop on what it is like to perform magic and get paid.

I am glad Paul mentioned the podcasts. Everyone seemed to enjoy the podcasts, but then never commented on them or asked follow-up questions!

Ultimately what led to the closing of the Bistro was my sad realization that most magicians just aren’t very interesting and have so little to say for themselves. For people who aspire to be entertainers, so very few are actually entertaining.

And my HUGE regret is that the Bistro experiment led to me falling out with a couple of people that I really like. While I made some wonderful new friends, I am so sad about the arguments and misunderstandings that damaged friendships.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Aug 22, 2013 01:29PM)
Well said James!!! To me, the weakest part of the Bistro was the lack of emoticons!! :bunny: JR
Message: Posted by: ClintonMagus (Aug 22, 2013 01:30PM)
James,

maybe you could lock and archive the Bistro so it won't be completely lost.
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (Aug 22, 2013 03:00PM)
[quote]
On 2013-08-22 14:21, James Munton wrote:

Many people like Mindpro have complained about the site suggesting that there were not enough threads about the subjects that interested them. I always had the same reply - “so start some!” One guy asked me to start a section on bizarre magic which I did and then he never posted a single thing!
[/quote]

So great of James to chime in and offer this insights and what he saw from his unique position. Thanks.

I think the point James made in the quote above can be likened to am empty restaurant. If you show up to a restaurant and do not see any customers in there, it creates a very strange and uninviting environment in which most people will turn and leave. They will not stick around to even try it. No one wants to be where nobody is. The restaurant complains "well if you came in and ate, others would see you and they may come in too." Well that may be right, but it's up to the restaurant to get the people in there to create the desired environment (as well as prevent any customers who detract from this). I think this was the same with the Magic Bistro. No one wants to come in when they don't see anyone of their interest, and usually do not want to start something on their own. They want to join in on what they expect to already be there. Also as in the restaurant analogy, if a place has no one there, most assume it's just not a happening pace or there are problems. Not a place they want to be.

I had thought of starting some stuff there but saw few who I felt would be interested in what I'd be able to add. I also saw a lot of challenging of one another there. Someone would post for example a video, other's would comment on it, then it would quickly turn to "well if you think you could do it better..." or "I don't see you posting a video of yourself doing it any better..."

I guess maybe to me it was a tone and level performers that didn't seem appealing or off-putting. I'm not sure if James from his position would see, feel or experience the same thing.

Many other forums have closed this past year. I for one feel that it's because people are looking for more specialized forums rather than generalized forums. For general forums, you had better have the quality activity in all of the various areas or it will quickly become lobsided or take a favored direction. Like the pools, not everyone wants to hang out in the kiddies pool or family pool. They may prefer their own area of preference or specialty. (...and no don't even go to "then why don't you go start your own forum?")
Message: Posted by: Al Angello (Aug 22, 2013 03:30PM)
IMHO
The biggest problem with the magic Bistro was the right wing wacko's who came with a chip on their shoulder looking for a fight. I am not innocent when it comes to having political opinions, but there were people there who had no interest in magic at all (I will not name names), and were obsessed with hating the black man in the white house.

All you gotta do is read between the lines of Dynamike's posts.
Message: Posted by: MJE (Aug 22, 2013 08:52PM)
Hey, James.

I was "invited" to join. So, I did. It became obvious after a few days that it was just loonies fighting over religion. Well, that's my take, anyway.

I think it's WONDERFUL that someone, in this case you, started an alternative board. I was, and still will, hope for the best for anyone jumping into the fray.

I wish you well, as I'm sure most here do. Continued success, and all the best in magic.

-MJ
Message: Posted by: MJE (Aug 22, 2013 09:12PM)
>>most magicians just aren’t very interesting and have so little to say for themselves. For people who aspire to be entertainers, so very few are actually entertaining<<

Whoa! I just re-read that. Jeez, I almost NEVER post here, but I just GOTTA jump on this one. Right On! Man, are you ever going to get burned on that comment, but please feel good about telling the truth.

I'm looking forward to meeting you, James. I see that you are in Dallas. I'm new to the area (I'm in McKinney), and I have a feeling that you are going to be a good guy to know here. Once again.....Right On!

-MJ
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Aug 22, 2013 09:50PM)
[quote]
On 2013-08-22 21:52, MJE wrote:
Hey, James.

I was "invited" to join. So, I did. It became obvious after a few days that it was just loonies fighting over religion. Well, that's my take, anyway.

[/quote]

I have to chime in here. Your statement could not be further from the truth. There was no fighting of which I was aware in the "Meaning of Life" section. It was several magicians who were interested in spiritual matters expressing their viewpoints with great intelligence. We had atheists, agnostics, new agers, Christian Fundementalists and others. There was wonderful debate and discussion, and rarely did it get heated. I congratulate James on allowing this on a magic forum. I actually miss that more than anything else, as I agree with James about boring magicians!! JR
Message: Posted by: Magical Dimensions (Aug 23, 2013 03:36AM)
Interesting, I never heard of the 'Magic Bistro until now. Sounds like a place that started with great intentions and was soon invested with ego, know it all brats who don't have any real friends other than those on the computer.

Sounds like a place that I would have liked to sit a spell and talked shop with others of liked mind. But, as in most places now, we find the ever present flow of self proclaimed experts who have never performed a real show, let along know how to block one.

It is a shame, sounds like James had a really great idea with the, 'Magic Bistro'.



Best
Ray
Message: Posted by: ClintonMagus (Aug 23, 2013 09:17AM)
I have a friend who is a track coach who says that to appreciate something, you must have "some skin in the game". We offered an indoor practice facility to high school students in the area. For this, we charged a minimum monthly "membership" fee to offset the cost of equipment, etc. On the other hand, we never refused anyone because of their inability to pay. Surprisingly to me, the only people who complained were those who did not have to pay, and they complained all the time. We finally closed the facility except for private, for-fee coaching sessions.

The same thing seems to happen in nearly every activity, and this is probably what happened here. Not enough people had "skin in the game".
Message: Posted by: Ken Northridge (Aug 24, 2013 08:19AM)
[quote]
On 2013-08-22 14:21, James Munton wrote:
Ultimately what led to the closing of the Bistro was my sad realization that most magicians just aren’t very interesting and have so little to say for themselves. For people who aspire to be entertainers, so very few are actually entertaining.
[/quote]

Although I always appreciate your blunt honesty James, I must disagree with this statement. I have always found chatting with entertainers to be very entertaining and funny, and the group of people at the Bistro were exceptionally entertaining. I’m not sure why there was not more participation but I don’t think its because of boring people.

I know it certainly was not because of a lack of effort on your part, James. You had some really good ideas (contests, podcasts, etc.). I can’t imagine how much work the Bistro must be for you, and so I can’t blame you for getting frustrated with it’s seemingly lack of participation and growth. But you can see by the comments on this thread that it meant a lot to some people, including me. Maybe you got burnt out. It is my understanding that Steve Brooks has delegated much of the day to day work to others (a word to the wise).

Finally, I must defend the 'bunch of bad advice’ comments again. I can’t remember anywhere on the Bistro that bad advice was given without out someone correcting it or at least sharing a different opinion. There is a large amount of great advice at the Bistro too if you’re willing to put in the time. In one thread someone asked me for my secret to securing and keeping a good paying restaurant gig for 18 years. I told them, in detail. Also, in my podcast I shared my somewhat unique method for booking school assemblies, something else I have been successful at for over 15 years. And that’s just scratching the surface.

James, Thanks for all of your hard work, and I wish you the best!
Message: Posted by: Al Angello (Aug 24, 2013 08:58AM)
Ken
The conversation at the Bistro was all about things that people there did not like, and it was dominated by a few unhappy people. I did make friends with some great performers there, but that was only because I sought them out privately.

In the end I have to agree with James' summation.
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (Aug 26, 2013 07:59AM)
I found the Bistro an enjoyable place to visit. The arguments were confined to particular sections, and could be ignored. There were fewer posting than on here, but almost no amateurs and wannabes, whose opinions are not worth bothering with.

Mindpro is right that there were a high proportion of family show performers. That is were most of the work is, and it was great to have a place to congregate with others who were in the same business. We are not all national headliners - some of us come from small markets where a national headliner has to have a day job to survive, whereas the middle-of-the-road, jobbing magician who does family shows makes a good living.

Mark Lewis is not a national headliner, but he has worked every aspect of the business, and if you sift through his posts you do find very good material. I also love his vicious sense of humour.

I am sorry to see the Bistro gone, and thank James for the great work he did for so long.

Also, he is right about most magicians being boring. I have a simple test. If I meet you and talk about magic, we are colleagues at best. If I meet you and talk about everything else, we are friends. So many magicians are only colleagues. Let's face it, if we were naturally entertaining, we would not need the crutch of the tricks.

BRING BACK THE BISTRO.
Message: Posted by: James Munton (Aug 26, 2013 01:39PM)
Thanks Ken and Tony.

To clarify, when I mentioned boring people, I wasn't talking about the regular posters, but rather the hundreds of members that lurked and never contributed anything to the conversations.

I totally agree with Tony. When I get together with magicians who are friends I rarely talk about magic. Some people got frustrated that there was a lot of "non-magic" talk. But for me, that was an important aspect of the Bistro. Unfortunately, you do get some people like Al who are unable to have a civil discussion without getting angry or nasty.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Aug 28, 2013 07:08PM)
I have always found that talking about magic with magicians is far less interesting than talking about other subjects with magicians. I prefer talking about magic with people who are not magicians, if that makes sense!!! JR
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (Aug 29, 2013 07:06AM)
I don't know, maybe it's just me, but I would think those interested in joining a magic forum do so to talk about magic. But I guess not.

Maybe there's a political and religious forum somewhere where they talk about double lifts, linking rings and doves.
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (Aug 29, 2013 12:00PM)
Mindpro, I joined the Bistro to talk about family entertainment with those doing family entertainment. My point about not talking to magicians about magic related to face to face conversations. I find magicians a bore in person, if that is all they can talk about. And since many who are drawn to the art are social inadequates with scant people skills, that is indeed all they can talk about.

Which is why many pros avoid magic clubs and conventions. I would rather have my teeth pulled without anesthetic.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Aug 29, 2013 01:32PM)
The common bond we all have is indeed magic. However, I would far rather talk about subjects out side magic with magicians because of that bond. When I first met the owner of this forum, Steve Brooks, we barely mentioned magic. We talked about ancient Egypt, as we both found we had an interest in that subject. When I first met Chance Wolfe at Magic Live, we had dinner together and chatted for a long time. We talked very little about magic, and Chance told me it was the best conversation he had ever had with a magician at a magic convention!!! JR
Message: Posted by: Al Angello (Aug 29, 2013 02:27PM)
Roger
Not all of us enjoyed your naval gazing. LOL
Message: Posted by: charliecheckers (Aug 30, 2013 12:01AM)
[quote]
On 2013-08-29 08:06, Mindpro wrote:
I don't know, maybe it's just me, but I would think those interested in joining a magic forum do so to talk about magic. But I guess not.
Maybe there's a political and religious forum somewhere where they talk about double lifts, linking rings and doves.
[/quote]
I agree with Mindpro. No offense, but if I want to discuss politics or religion with someone why would I limit my pool of people to those who also do magic? I didn't mind that it was offered, I just never saw the point.

I am surprised nobody really mentioned the point that the layout looked less inviting than TMC. I suppose it might have been viewed as favorable (less flashy) by some, but I prefer the layout here.

I really enjoyed the podcasts. I have to agree with James that they did not provide as much discussion as they could have. It was one area of the Bistro that was a significant advantage over other forums.
Message: Posted by: Al Angello (Aug 30, 2013 07:37AM)
The pod cast was the Bistro's best feature, and I really enjoyed the interviews.
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (Aug 30, 2013 01:51PM)
The quality of the podcasts went seriously downhill at the end. He even interviewed Irish men. But they started well. It would be great to have an archive of them.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Aug 30, 2013 01:56PM)
[quote]
On 2013-08-30 14:51, TonyB2009 wrote:
The quality of the podcasts went seriously downhill at the end. He even interviewed Irish men. But they started well. It would be great to have an archive of them.
[/quote]

Good point Tony....and well said four times. I believe I was the first and you were the last. The Alpha and the Omega!!!!(OH dear....now some will think I am being religious!!) JR
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Sep 6, 2013 09:36PM)
Ok I am constantly shocked how my name comes up when I am nowhere near a subject.

I have to say I didn't join out of no other reasoning than time. No time.

I can't imagine how James would have the time to run it either. He gives away more shows than many do themselves.

My problem with most sites is they are dedicated to shows I simply don't do. Talking business or tricks that would do me no good anyhow. I also know nothing about kids shows, birthday parties or how to get them. I would have been less than useless.

I must say it is not fair to James to go in expecting anything. It is what it is and you should get out of it what you put into it. It should not be up to James to enhance your experience. Do it yourself. He put the site up. If you don't like the discussions don't read them. It is simple.

As for Mark he can't be here so I have nothing to say about it.

But it is unfair to try to compare it to other places. Often when another site comes up the disenchanted from other places use it as a platform. Again not fair to James.

I think he should take a step back from it. Look at it and so should everyone. Nobody is entitled to it. It is up to you to make of it what it can be if he decides to do it again.

Now stop using my name.
Message: Posted by: Al Angello (Sep 7, 2013 10:07AM)
Who is this MJE guy? He seems to know me, but I can't figure out who he is.
Message: Posted by: Ken Northridge (Sep 7, 2013 11:02PM)
[quote]
On 2013-09-06 22:36, Dannydoyle wrote:
Now stop using my name.
[/quote]
Your name is being used in high esteem….and you love it! How else would you explain the 14,300+ times [b]you[/b] have used your name on this site?
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Sep 8, 2013 04:51PM)
Yes see the pronoun? Using my own name vs someone just bringing it up?

But I was more joking than anything.
Message: Posted by: mfields (Oct 13, 2013 11:49PM)
Well I was not that active on that forum, nor on this forum. I actually run a forum on radio controlled sailboats and I take my hat off to James or anyone who tries run a forum as no matter how hard you try, its always a flurry of spam, robot postings and the occasional explosive debate that can leave people hurt.

If the forum is dead, please, PLEASE bring back the podcasts James. I have personally had great enjoyment and benefit from them. I admit I did not ask questions after listening either. Mostly I did not need to ask as they were self contained. I have no idea on your download figures but I thought they were great. You and your guests have driven a lot of miles in my car and really loved your input.

So James I hope I am not the only to say "Thank You" for your effort.
Message: Posted by: Michael Jay (Apr 25, 2014 09:47AM)
Sorry to come into this discussion so late, but I just found out that The Bistro has lost its place on the internet. I'm not surprised, though, particularly when the initial start of that forum was founded on underhanded dealings with other magic forums. Rather like a pack of thieves, they descended and attempted to harvest members from already founded forums. And like thieves, amongst themselves there is no honor (which explains why the barefoot guy, the jollies guy and mutton chops found themselves at odds...People who are less than honorable rarely are able to get along with each other because of the constant back stabbing that will naturally take place). In other words, the fall of The Bistro comes as no shock to me. In fact, I find it to be the logical conclusion.

Of course, when you throw in Louis you have the makings of a place that even the lowest form of amoeba refuses to associate itself.

:cheers:

Mike.
Message: Posted by: Ken Northridge (Apr 28, 2014 09:56AM)
[quote]On Apr 25, 2014, Michael Jay wrote:
And like thieves, amongst themselves there is no honor (which explains why the barefoot guy, the jollies guy and mutton chops found themselves at odds...People who are less than honorable rarely are able to get along with each other [/quote]
IMHO the people you mentioned are some of the most honorable people I’ve ever known. And you call them thieves? What are they stealing, the opportunity to share knowledge, information and experience with their fellow entertainers…for free?
Message: Posted by: Michael Jay (Apr 29, 2014 06:10AM)
I chose my words very carefully. I did not call them thieves, I said "like thieves." I do not doubt their intentions, but I find their methods to be deplorable. In other words, the end does not justify the means. The Bistro was founded by underhanded means. You may call that honorable if you please, but I think it's a matter of letting your friendship or admiration cloud your judgment.

Mike.
Message: Posted by: Ken Northridge (Apr 29, 2014 10:10AM)
I appreciate your response, Jay, but I still don’t know what you mean by ‘underhanded.’ It was formed as an alternative place to discuss magic without the usual moderation polices of the other forums. I found it refreshing to be able to express my opinions without fear of the moderators changing my words or being banned for my honesty. For the record, I love The Magic Café and have never criticized it. The Magic Bistro was a different place, that’s all.
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (Apr 29, 2014 06:43PM)
This is rich; the kettle calling the pot black. I left the Magicbunny forum because of Michael Jay's moderation. It was full of arrogant posters, and you ran the risk of being banned without appeal for posting something that offended the slightly right-wing christian ethos of the place.

I found the Bistro to be an entertaining forum, and the guys on it were capable of vigorous discussion without falling out. That didn't happen on the Magicbunny. And I found James Munton to be completely sound.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Apr 29, 2014 10:53PM)
[quote]On Apr 29, 2014, Michael Jay wrote:
I chose my words very carefully. I did not call them thieves, I said "like thieves." I do not doubt their intentions, but I find their methods to be deplorable. In other words, the end does not justify the means. The Bistro was founded by underhanded means. You may call that honorable if you please, but I think it's a matter of letting your friendship or admiration cloud your judgment.

Mike. [/quote]

I think Michael Jay has no idea what he is talking about. With great respect, I think Michael Jay's problem might be Michael Jay, and I suggest therapy! JR
Message: Posted by: Michael Jay (Apr 30, 2014 06:23AM)
[quote]Tony wrote:
I found the Bistro to be an entertaining forum, and the guys on it were capable of vigorous discussion without falling out. That didn't happen on the Magicbunny.[/quote]

And yet The Bistro closed down while Magic Bunny is still going strong. Go figure. You also suggest that members run the risk of being banned without appeal. You are either terribly misguided or a blatant liar. Were you banned? No, you never were. And to my knowledge you never even received so much as a warning for anything, at any time. Interesting that you'd make such a claim.

[quote]Jolly Roger wrote:
I think Michael Jay has no idea what he is talking about.[/quote]

You could reasonably get away with making that false accusation if it weren't for the fact that the threads proving my claim are still on Magic Bunny. Why would we not simply delete them? Because we don't have a history of deleting people's posts. In fact, early on in one of the threads, before it was found that jiggery-pokery was afoot, I wished you folks at The Bistro well and fully allowed you to advertise it on my site. It was your own dirty dealing that got you shut down on Magic Bunny.

Mike.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Apr 30, 2014 07:54AM)
[quote]

You could reasonably get away with making that false accusation if it weren't for the fact that the threads proving my claim are still on Magic Bunny. Why would we not simply delete them? Because we don't have a history of deleting people's posts. In fact, early on in one of the threads, before it was found that jiggery-pokery was afoot, I wished you folks at The Bistro well and fully allowed you to advertise it on my site. It was your own dirty dealing that got you shut down on Magic Bunny.

Mike. [/quote]

If one is not a member of the Magic Bunny, or if one has been banned, how is one able to view this so-called proof, so that one can possibly express an alternative perspective? I do appreciate your interest in this matter, Michael, and I am hopeful we can all find the real truth about the accusations that are being made. Jolly good, and many thanks for your interest. JR
:sun: :sun:
Message: Posted by: Michael Jay (Apr 30, 2014 08:02AM)
One should have considered that problem before one got oneself banned. Presently, you are the one making the accusations with no proof, I am merely defending my position with full proof of where I speak. If anyone is interested in researching this silly argument, then they are fully capable of taking out a membership with my site and looking it up. Not difficult to do and not a secret. And certainly not rocket science.

Mike.
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (Apr 30, 2014 09:01AM)
[quote]On Apr 30, 2014, Michael Jay wrote:
You also suggest that members run the risk of being banned without appeal. You are either terribly misguided or a blatant liar. Were you banned? No, you never were. And to my knowledge you never even received so much as a warning for anything, at any time. Interesting that you'd make such a claim.[/quote]
I was banned, for daring to make the suggestion that someone's silly 'religious' experience could have a natural explanation. I got a week long ban with no warning, no explanation (until I insisted on one) and no appeal. Go check your facts before coming on here accusing people in the wrong.
Message: Posted by: Michael Jay (Apr 30, 2014 09:12AM)
My apologies, Tony, I was wrong. I've been wrong before and I'll be wrong in the future. It happens. That would have had to have been around 4 years back, so I know that an open minded guy like you will forgive me for not remembering such a thing. Fact is, I've dealt with that forum for 12 years now and a lot of things have happened that I cannot remember. So, you have my sincere apology for my mistake.

Also, it was a thread that was becoming super heated and the ban that you received was, more than likely, wrongful. It was only for a week, though, and your account was reinstated. I wish I could remember everything that went on behind the scenes, but that was 4 years ago. Again, you have my unequivocal apology for that.

Mike.
Message: Posted by: Michael Jay (Apr 30, 2014 09:38AM)
I have to post an addendum, here. I've taken the time to research the thread that got you a week long ban. I found the following...

Tony: I do not do tolerance. I am a committed and aggressive rationalist. I learnt that attitude from the religious nuts who suppressed reason and science for centuries.

Mike: First, if you don't do tolerance then you have no business getting in on this conversation. Keep your intolerance to yourself.

Tony: Michael, creationism is not wrong because I believe it is wrong. It is demonstratably wrong, as 150 years of scientific endeavour have shown. It has nothing to do with personal belief. And that is why we will fight against it being taught and promoted.

Mike: If you want to debate and discuss and attack others for their beliefs, you will NOT do it on this thread.

Tony: <continues debating on that thread>

Mike: I have told you what I expect on this thread. It is not open to debate. If you decide that you somehow trump me with your debating skills, then continue the way you are going and see what happens. You have been fairly warned.

Tony: <continues debating on that thread>

Even after I explained that you had every right to start another thread and talk about any topic you pleased, you still continued after receiving fair warning that you would be given a ban. You could have started another thread and nothing would have happened to you, but you didn't do that - you continued on your merry way, ignoring the warnings that I gave you and everyone involved on that thread.

Nevertheless, my apology still stands.

Mike.
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (Apr 30, 2014 09:44AM)
Thank you, Michael. It is appreciated.
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (Apr 30, 2014 09:46AM)
Out of curiosity, was anyone else banned as a result of that thread? I seem to remember I was only responding vigorously because I was being challenged vigorously.
Message: Posted by: Michael Jay (Apr 30, 2014 09:50AM)
No, the thread died shortly after I handed out the first ban - that ban being you.

And Tony, I really am sorry for what happened.

Mike.
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (Apr 30, 2014 11:23AM)
Hi Mike.
I really appreciate what you have posted over the past few hours.
And I completely withdraw my snide remarks about the MagicBunny.
Thank you and all the best, Tony
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (Apr 30, 2014 11:25AM)
On the original topic, I know nothing about the origins of the Bistro, so cannot comment. I can say I found it a cool place to hang out, I enjoyed the mix of posters (for the most part), Mark Lewis was rarely banned (a positive in my view), and I found James friendly and likable. That was enough for me.
Message: Posted by: Michael Jay (Apr 30, 2014 01:20PM)
I am pleased that we could bring this to an amicable conclusion, Tony. All is well!

While I replied to you and the jolly guy, I accidentally ignored Ken's post...

[quote]Ken wrote:
I appreciate your response, Jay, but I still don’t know what you mean by ‘underhanded.’ It was formed as an alternative place to discuss magic without the usual moderation polices of the other forums.[/quote]

When The Bistro was first announced on our pages, many of our members jumped on board and/or wished them well. I was more than happy to allow them to get a leg up via our pages. Their initial advertising on our forums was okay, but then it started to become an aggressive campaign to get members from our site over to theirs. I still allowed it, but was getting increasingly annoyed.

That's when derogatory posts started surfacing on The Bistro in regard to my forum and Paul Pacific came out telling everyone what a great job he was doing pulling in members off of my site.

As it turned out, Paul Pacific was posting under the name "Mind Feet" on my forum and talking in third person about himself. He used that as a way to continue to advertise The Bistro and Jolly Roger, knowing full well what Pacific was up to, fed him lines while the two of them talked about Paul Pacific in the third person. All this in order to push The Bistro on my pages.

It was a sleazy way of going about things, particularly considering that Magic Bunny was allowing them to advertise their site without problem. They had the opportunity to use my site to make both sites better and stronger, but, instead, they metaphorically spit in my face and laughed about it on The Bistro. It was sleazy and it was dirty. James Munton turned a blind eye.

Now I understand that you like these guys and probably consider them to be friends. I don't expect in any way that your opinion of them will change. However, I feel very differently about them than you do and there will always be bad blood between them and me. I was pleased that their site lasted only 2 years and my own human shortcomings brought me to post my original post on this thread. From my chair, I view The Bistro as having been started via sleazy and underhanded tactics and, as a result, I am not surprised that it came to the end that it did.

A shame, really, because we could have cross promoted each other and maybe, just maybe, The Bistro would still be going strong.

Mike.
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (Apr 30, 2014 02:25PM)
I was not a member during the early days of the Bistro, and have no idea how they promoted it. I just saw a few mentions on the magiccafe. But if your account is accurate, I would have found that as irritating as you obviously did.

I think it is very easy to fall out over the internet, whereas if we were all dealing with each other face to face we might see and correct our own faults, and see and overlook the other man's.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Apr 30, 2014 04:12PM)
[quote]On Apr 30, 2014, Michael Jay wrote:
I am pleased that we could bring this to an amicable conclusion, Tony. All is well!

While I replied to you and the jolly guy, I accidentally ignored Ken's post...

[quote]Ken wrote:
I appreciate your response, Jay, but I still don’t know what you mean by ‘underhanded.’ It was formed as an alternative place to discuss magic without the usual moderation polices of the other forums.[/quote]

When The Bistro was first announced on our pages, many of our members jumped on board and/or wished them well. I was more than happy to allow them to get a leg up via our pages. Their initial advertising on our forums was okay, but then it started to become an aggressive campaign to get members from our site over to theirs. I still allowed it, but was getting increasingly annoyed.

That's when derogatory posts started surfacing on The Bistro in regard to my forum and Paul Pacific came out telling everyone what a great job he was doing pulling in members off of my site.

As it turned out, Paul Pacific was posting under the name "Mind Feet" on my forum and talking in third person about himself. He used that as a way to continue to advertise The Bistro and Jolly Roger, knowing full well what Pacific was up to, fed him lines while the two of them talked about Paul Pacific in the third person. All this in order to push The Bistro on my pages.

It was a sleazy way of going about things, particularly considering that Magic Bunny was allowing them to advertise their site without problem. They had the opportunity to use my site to make both sites better and stronger, but, instead, they metaphorically spit in my face and laughed about it on The Bistro. It was sleazy and it was dirty. James Munton turned a blind eye.

Now I understand that you like these guys and probably consider them to be friends. I don't expect in any way that your opinion of them will change. However, I feel very differently about them than you do and there will always be bad blood between them and me. I was pleased that their site lasted only 2 years and my own human shortcomings brought me to post my original post on this thread. From my chair, I view The Bistro as having been started via sleazy and underhanded tactics and, as a result, I am not surprised that it came to the end that it did.

A shame, really, because we could have cross promoted each other and maybe, just maybe, The Bistro would still be going strong.

Mike. [/quote]

This is simply not true, Michael. Paul Pacific and I rarely speak to each other, as Paul for some odd reason doesn't seem to like me very much. He prefers talking to his feet, it would seem!!!!!! This whole thing is so ridiculous, that I really think that you should move on. All is forgiven, whatever "all" is!!!
JR
Message: Posted by: James Munton (Apr 30, 2014 04:59PM)
Mike,

I am sorry that you are upset. I would like to respond to a couple of points.

There was never a marketing plan or concerted effort to "steal" members from other sites. The whole thing was a very amateur attempt to provide a little place for people to meet and chat without being censored or moderated. I honestly don't remember any of the conversations you mention. I don't remember anyone mocking your forum. And if they did, it is not a case of me turning a blind eye, it was the fact that the Bistro was completely unmoderated! I now realize it was a bit naive to think that an unmoderated forum would work, because people get all silly on the Internet and say things to each other that they would probably not do in person.

I am sure you have had people make comments on your forum that you disagree with or find unpleasant. Perhaps you delete those posts or ban the poster. Well, on the Bistro there was a policy to allow anything and everyone! There were some awful arguments. On occasion, I did try to calm people down behind the scenes, but it didn't really work. So, I ended up banning a few people and deleting a few posts and then we became just like all the other forums. End of experiment.

As I mentioned earlier, the saddest thing for me is that along the way, so many people like you have become annoyed or upset. I really didn't intend for that. The whole thing was started with the best of intentions.

And please let me defend Roger and Paul. I do not think I ever saw their posts on your forum. As I said, I honestly don't remember any of this. But you really must know that there is not an ounce of malice in Jolly Roger whom I know well. He is playful and silly and perhaps he was over-enthusiastic. If he was getting into shenanigans with Paul, it would have been because he thought it was all a jolly good wheeze. I have never heard Roger express a mean thought about anyone! I don't know Paul as well, but he is similar to Roger in that he is a bit of a trixter and a naughty schoolboy. The funny thing is that though they are quite similar, they really don't get on very well and Roger irritates Paul tremendously!

But look, the long and short of it is that I just don't want the Bistro to be the cause of any hard feelings. As I mentioned earlier in this thread, I have lost friends because of it which is absolutely tragic. You seem to have great bitterness about the place and I would love for you to be able to let it go and not let it cause you any more anger.

So please accept my apology for anything improper that was ever done by Bistro members, or even myself for that matter.

Best,
James
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Apr 30, 2014 05:51PM)
[quote]On Apr 30, 2014, James Munton wrote:
Mike,

I am sorry that you are upset. I would like to respond to a couple of points.

There was never a marketing plan or concerted effort to "steal" members from other sites. The whole thing was a very amateur attempt to provide a little place for people to meet and chat without being censored or moderated. I honestly don't remember any of the conversations you mention. I don't remember anyone mocking your forum. And if they did, it is not a case of me turning a blind eye, it was the fact that the Bistro was completely unmoderated! I now realize it was a bit naive to think that an unmoderated forum would work, because people get all silly on the Internet and say things to each other that they would probably not do in person.

I am sure you have had people make comments on your forum that you disagree with or find unpleasant. Perhaps you delete those posts or ban the poster. Well, on the Bistro there was a policy to allow anything and everyone! There were some awful arguments. On occasion, I did try to calm people down behind the scenes, but it didn't really work. So, I ended up banning a few people and deleting a few posts and then we became just like all the other forums. End of experiment.

As I mentioned earlier, the saddest thing for me is that along the way, so many people like you have become annoyed or upset. I really didn't intend for that. The whole thing was started with the best of intentions.

And please let me defend Roger and Paul. I do not think I ever saw their posts on your forum. As I said, I honestly don't remember any of this. But you really must know that there is not an ounce of malice in Jolly Roger whom I know well. He is playful and silly and perhaps he was over-enthusiastic. If he was getting into shenanigans with Paul, it would have been because he thought it was all a jolly good wheeze. I have never heard Roger express a mean thought about anyone! I don't know Paul as well, but he is similar to Roger in that he is a bit of a trixter and a naughty schoolboy. The funny thing is that though they are quite similar, they really don't get on very well and Roger irritates Paul tremendously!

But look, the long and short of it is that I just don't want the Bistro to be the cause of any hard feelings. As I mentioned earlier in this thread, I have lost friends because of it which is absolutely tragic. You seem to have great bitterness about the place and I would love for you to be able to let it go and not let it cause you any more anger.

So please accept my apology for anything improper that was ever done by Bistro members, or even myself for that matter.

Best,
James [/quote]

Well said James!!! If the USA were sensible like England, and had a monarchy, you would make an excellent King. Alternatively, I think you would also be jolly good presiding over the United Nations as peacemaker!!! JR
:bubbly: :bubbly:
Message: Posted by: James Munton (Apr 30, 2014 06:41PM)
No! It would be World War III within days.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Apr 30, 2014 07:31PM)
[youtube]vo9AH4vG2wA[/youtube]

JR
Message: Posted by: Michael Jay (May 1, 2014 07:20AM)
Thank you, James, for that lengthy post. I'm pleased to put this in the past and recognize that all is forgiven and forgotten. Hopefully our paths will cross one day and we'll be able to have a beer and shoot the stuff. I'll buy!

On a side note to JR:

I've not asked your forgiveness as there is nothing for you to forgive. You might not remember your abuses on my forum, but I have the threads and they are there for anyone to research. So, don't forgive me as I've offered you no apology. I am impressed by your chutzpah though (you'll probably take that as a compliment).

Mike.
Message: Posted by: Police Magician (May 1, 2014 09:00AM)
For me, The Magic Bistro was like a family. I know I did post a lot of things about myself and did not contribute that much to magic. What I did post were the safety shows, con game and carnival game fraud topics that I have been involved with in education of the public.

I loved the podcasts James did and was honored to be among those chosen, although I did not feel I was in the company of those who were much more professional than me, like James, Jolly Roger, Mark Lewis and Paul Pacific, to name a few.

I also enjoyed Michael's articles in "VISONS" each month. I have learned a lot from the many forums I have been associated with.

One of things I love about James is his book, "The Con" and his internet safety show he does for children and teaching them to protect themselves from the criminals who prey on young people.

Mark Lewis showed a side to me that many do not know. He is compassionate and gave me the titles of some books to help me deal with the rage within.

I miss the Bistro and wish it could be resurrected.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (May 1, 2014 09:34AM)
[quote]On May 1, 2014, Michael Jay wrote:
Thank you, James, for that lengthy post. I'm pleased to put this in the past and recognize that all is forgiven and forgotten. Hopefully our paths will cross one day and we'll be able to have a beer and shoot the stuff. I'll buy!

On a side note to JR:

I've not asked your forgiveness as there is nothing for you to forgive. You might not remember your abuses on my forum, but I have the threads and they are there for anyone to research. So, don't forgive me as I've offered you no apology. I am impressed by your chutzpah though (you'll probably take that as a compliment).

Mike. [/quote]

Michael, you are simply wrong on this. I never abused your forum, so I have not got a clue what you are talking about. It is also not true that the threads are there for anyone to research. I, for one, am not allowed to research them because I am unable to gain access to yout forum. Having said all that, I have no doubt that you are a wonderful divine spirit moving through the murky waters of planet earth in one of many lifetimes, so you have a false perception of things sometimes, as we all do. Now..can we please all move on? Jolly Good!!! :dancing: :magicrabbit: JR
Message: Posted by: MickNZ (May 5, 2014 01:19AM)
[quote]On Apr 30, 2014, Jolly Roger wrote:
Well said James!!! If the USA were sensible like England, and had a monarchy, you would make an excellent King. [/quote]

They wouldn't allow a King who dressed in a baseball cap. Or one in a green dress, for that matter.
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (May 5, 2014 07:17AM)
Was magic ever discussed there? From what I saw it seemed like members used it to vent and talk about everything else but the business of magic or entertainment. That was my first impression with two minutes of visiting with a member trying to have me join.
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (May 5, 2014 08:01AM)
Yes, Mindpro, a lot of magic was discussed, particularly in the family magic section.
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (May 5, 2014 10:22AM)
Was it then mostly kids and family performers? I was directed there because of the mentaism and business areas, but they really seemed lacking and non-supported. At least these were my thoughts, maybe others would disagree.
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (May 5, 2014 09:25PM)
The mentalism section was rarely used, and didn't have much of use in it. It was kids and family show performers who dominated the Bistro. And some good insights were shared.
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (May 6, 2014 05:08PM)
I also was dominated by a LOT of non magic talk and ego problems within the ranks.

I am not saying that is a bad thing, it just was.
Message: Posted by: Ken Northridge (May 7, 2014 07:25AM)
^This is true, but again, in my opinion this is what made it special.

How many times do you see a post here at The Magic Café by someone you have no idea who it is? Therefore, you don't know if it should be taken seriously? I mean, how many magicians tell you what you should do to be successful and yet they are only successful in their in minds?

At the Bistro, we really got to know each other. What our background was, yes, even what our religious and political views were. It gave credence to what we posted about magic. And make no mistake about it, there was great information shared at The Magic Bistro.
Message: Posted by: Donald Dunphy (May 7, 2014 10:02AM)
Just today, I listened to a Magic Bistro podcast that I had downloaded a while ago (but hadn't listened to yet). It was the Great Zucchini interview. Thanks James.

- Donald
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (May 7, 2014 07:02PM)
Ken, that is exactly how I remember the Bistro. And because of that it was fun to post on.
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (May 12, 2014 07:07PM)
[quote]On May 7, 2014, Ken Northridge wrote:
^This is true, but again, in my opinion this is what made it special.

How many times do you see a post here at The Magic Café by someone you have no idea who it is? Therefore, you don't know if it should be taken seriously? I mean, how many magicians tell you what you should do to be successful and yet they are only successful in their in minds?

At the Bistro, we really got to know each other. What our background was, yes, even what our religious and political views were. It gave credence to what we posted about magic. And make no mistake about it, there was great information shared at The Magic Bistro. [/quote]

I get what you are saying and if that was where it stopped the place would most likely still be running. But when you let ego go unchecked and people start to just blast away at each other for old reasons it goes downhill fast.

James to his immense credit tried to strike a balance. That line is the width of a spiders web and it is so hard to see. That is the problem.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (May 30, 2014 05:09PM)
I am delighted to report that The Magic Bistro has just re-opened: www.MagicBistro.com

JR
Message: Posted by: TonyB2009 (Jun 4, 2014 04:43PM)
Same username and password, or do we have to rejoin?
Message: Posted by: Ken Northridge (Jun 5, 2014 05:58AM)
Rejoin Tony! Its all new.
Message: Posted by: James Munton (Jun 5, 2014 01:29PM)
Yes, it is true. The Bistro is back... but very different.

If you were a member of the old Bistro you will need to apply to rejoin. I have already rejected a couple of people who didn't use their real names. I want this to be a place for grown-ups to talk about magic and performance in a calm, productive way. There is a separate room for non-magic talk which people can opt into or avoid altogether.

It might turn out to be terribly boring or it could be fabulous! But there won't be any silly bickering.

To give an idea... I posted a card routine of mine that uses the Shapeshifter change. Marc DeSouza and I then discussed some of the finer details of his wonderful move. In another thread Ian Kendall and I expressed our opposing views about asking a group if they would like to see magic in a strolling situation. And there is a good thread about costuming for kids shows. I'll start up the podcasts again soon.

It is very early days (literally the first week) but I like the tone so far. If this sounds like your bag, come over and check it out.

And if you want lots of silliness, I highly recommend applying for Jolly Roger's fabulous Facebook group, the Jolly Jammers.

Right, that's the last time I will mention the Bistro here or on any other forum. I don't want to step on any toes or upset anyone.

Best,
James
Message: Posted by: charliecheckers (Jun 14, 2014 01:29PM)
I just signed up. Glad to see it is back.
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (Jun 14, 2014 06:24PM)
I knew this would be back relatively quick. My question is..is it really any different? Is it still a kids performers forum? Is it still a lot of talk about anything but entertainment? Is it still the cop magician posting every other thread? Is it still former scorned Café members bad-mouthing the Café? Is there any mentalism included? Any non-kids/family performers areas? And is there any sections related to the business of entertaining? I guess even the former if I recall had some of this but still without much focus due to all of the kids performers.

James seems to have so much to offer but it never seemed to come through in the former forum as I recall, so I'm wondering is it really different now and how? Seems like most of the same old guys getting excited about recreating the old Bistro.

Is it worth taking another look at for consideration for pros? Charliecheckers I value you opinion, any thoughts?
Message: Posted by: charliecheckers (Jun 15, 2014 01:11PM)
I joined to see how the new Bistro can provide a new and different outlet. On one hand I believe James is capable of creating a site that is very interesting. I really like his way of thinking and his own materials. In fact, I feel cheated in life, never getting to see a "James Wand" show as a kid because I was a card carrying member of Spy University and I know I would have loved it.

That being said, I too wonder how this will be different. I think it would be very hard to create a better TMC, which is what it seemed the last Bistro attempted unsuccessfully. It appeared to be a subset of the same topics, with fewer (but the same) participants. Often people were creating duplicate threads at both sites and the responses were duplicates as well. I hope James changes format and content completely. The podcasts were good, but better pull through into discussion would be of interest. Deeper discussions and/or debates on an opinion, website, strategy, performance, etc. would be one aspect I think could be approached in a different way.

In joining, I hope to hear how this new site will be a departure from that which is already out there and the thinking behind it. I wonder what the motivation behind this is for James. It seems a big time investment. I hope he shares that as well. It seems many who are responding to the new Bistro favor discussion on topics outside the performing and business aspects of a blog site. This may suit them well, but is not of interest to me. In fact, I chose only to dine in the main dining room of the Bistro. If the other areas are the focus of this site, it will not have value for me.
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (Jun 15, 2014 02:33PM)
[quote]On Jun 15, 2014, charliecheckers wrote:
I joined to see how the new Bistro can provide a new and different outlet. On one hand I believe James is capable of creating a site that is very interesting. I really like his way of thinking and his own materials. In fact, I feel cheated in life, never getting to see a "James Wand" show as a kid because I was a card carrying member of Spy University and I know I would have loved it.

That being said, I too wonder how this will be different. I think it would be very hard to create a better TMC, which is what it seemed the last Bistro attempted unsuccessfully. It appeared to be a subset of the same topics, with fewer (but the same) participants. Often people were creating duplicate threads at both sites and the responses were duplicates as well. I hope James changes format and content completely. The podcasts were good, but better pull through into discussion would be of interest. Deeper discussions and/or debates on an opinion, website, strategy, performance, etc. would be one aspect I think could be approached in a different way.

In joining, I hope to hear how this new site will be a departure from that which is already out there and the thinking behind it. I wonder what the motivation behind this is for James. It seems a big time investment. I hope he shares that as well. It seems many who are responding to the new Bistro favor discussion on topics outside the performing and business aspects of a blog site. This may suit them well, but is not of interest to me. In fact, I chose only to dine in the main dining room of the Bistro. If the other areas are the focus of this site, it will not have value for me. [/quote]

Thanks for your thoughts charliecheckers. I'm very confused by your sentiments about James Wand as I've seen his show for years and it is anything but child-appropriate. Not sure about this.

The bottom line is if it's going to be the same people as before it will generate the same thing as before with the same results as before. When I checked it out previously it was a lot of talk and silliness about almost everything but magic or performing. This is why I was wondering. Some of the available forums were never given the proper attention to achieve what it could've been, which is why I too have wondered and questioned its purpose and new desired direction. I also remember there were also some guys saying things and passing them off as fact that in reality were far from any truths but just skewed opinions

It seems to do little good to just re-do what was already there, but who knows. I also agree that there was little depth to anything I remember seeing which is why I asked is this something for more amateurs or hobbyists or a place where they are seeking pros to hang out and share? Is it about performing and the business of entertaining or just casual or frivilous conversing?

I always have liked what I know about James, but must say the forum seemed to be a contrast and even conflict to his professional course and products. Maybe the podcasts were more along the lines of business but I never heard them, only have heard of them being referred to, but again, mostly about kids performers with the exception of Paul Pacific I think I remember hearing about, but then I was told he then got banned. I'm just not sure.
Message: Posted by: charliecheckers (Jun 15, 2014 07:30PM)
[quote]On Jun 15, 2014, Mindpro wrote:
I'm very confused by your sentiments about James Wand as I've seen his show for years and it is anything but child-appropriate. Not sure about this. [/quote]

Are we talking about the same thing? http://www.jameswand.com
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (Jun 15, 2014 07:43PM)
Haha, no we are not. This James Wand has been around for years and was what I was referring to:
http://hypnotism.com/performers/hypnotists/jim-wand/
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Jun 15, 2014 08:09PM)
Thus summing up the magic bistdo. Everyone talking about something completely different.
Message: Posted by: James Munton (Jun 16, 2014 01:32AM)
Good grief, fellas, you do overthink things, don't you?! It's just a place for a few friends to hang and chat.

Not trying to be anything more than that.
Message: Posted by: Devious (Jun 16, 2014 05:37AM)
[quote]On Jun 5, 2014, James Munton wrote:
Right, that's the last time I will mention the Bistro here or on any other forum.
Best, James [/quote]
Hmmmm?

I would have to concur with Mindpro's opinions on this.
What's new from the previous model?
Message: Posted by: Ken Northridge (Jun 16, 2014 07:46AM)
Mindpro, there is only one way to find out if its different. JOIN! If you join at level one you will not be including in the "silly nonsense" forum which includes the political and religious talk. I wish you would join because your advice is always fantastic, but you will have to use your real name, which I don't have a clue what it is.
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (Jun 16, 2014 08:17AM)
Thanks Ken. There is a "silly nonsense" forum? Hmmm. And my real name is Mindpro!
Message: Posted by: MJE (Jun 17, 2014 08:21AM)
Having been to the site a few times, I assure everyone that it's not hard to get to. It sounds like several people want lots of questions answered before they reach all the way over to the keyboard or mouse. Mr. Mindpro actually posed 10 questions in the space of about two inches.

I fully understand the difficulty in doing one's own work. I see that in my kids every day. I promise that if you simply go to the new site, it won't take you long to determine if you like it or not. If you do, stay. If you don't, leave. Pretty simple.
Message: Posted by: Mindpro (Jun 17, 2014 09:47AM)
Not quite so simple. There's really no point of it is just going to be the same as it was. Also other important questions come into play such as is this forum Googlable? This is extremely important for any forum that is requiring users to use their own name. No professional I know would want to be inclined to openly share their thoughts when anyone could just have access to it. Why do you think many of the pros here have used screen names (Maven, Derren Brown, Kreskin, Burton, Blain, Angel, etc.)?

There is much more to it than many kids performers or those serving consumer markets may have to consider. Again, if it's just for kids and family performers that may be different.

Also I was under the impression you couldn't "simply go to the site", that you had to first register, be accepted, and so on.

No one has still addressed the question several have asked as to why it was brought back? Many things to consider before I would consider being part of any community.
Message: Posted by: MJE (Jun 17, 2014 10:42AM)
With all due respect, I'm not sure it matters WHY it was brought back. Maybe the guy enjoys it. In this era, web sites start and end daily. No one really has to justify the decision to start one. All it takes is time and usually some money. I know a woman who started a site for her dog. I can't imagine that anyone would say that she needs to justify doing it, as dumb as it may be.

On another matter, I noticed the mention of James Wand. I, too, was thinking of the hypnotist and had a hard time believing that he was doing kidshows. I'm not sure, but I think the lesser known James Wand is the guy who has the Bistro going. Why he would choose a name that is so well-known for something else, I have no clue. Although, I am considering changing my pro name to Clint Eastwood. I'm sure it won't confuse anyone.
Message: Posted by: charliecheckers (Jun 17, 2014 01:58PM)
[quote]On Jun 17, 2014, MJE wrote:
On another matter, I noticed the mention of James Wand. I, too, was thinking of the hypnotist and had a hard time believing that he was doing kidshows. I'm not sure, but I think the lesser known James Wand is the guy who has the Bistro going. Why he would choose a name that is so well-known for something else, I have no clue. Although, I am considering changing my pro name to Clint Eastwood. I'm sure it won't confuse anyone. [/quote]

In the area he serves where he targets moms and scout leaders, my guess is the number of people who confuse him with Jim Wand is less than 0%.
A google search of " James Wand" will tell you he has nothing to worry about.
Message: Posted by: MJE (Jun 17, 2014 02:12PM)
I suppose that's probably true, but he sure does get around. The moms and scout leaders may have seen his hyp act in a grand theater or at a flea market. Or just about anything in between.

Of course, most will remember that they saw "a hypnotist." Same as us. As much as we try to nail that name recognition thing, about half the time we were "a magician."
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Jun 17, 2014 05:31PM)
There is an excellent discussion over there at the moment about Reincarnation as it relates to those in the entertainment profession. Go check it out!!! :rotf: JR
Message: Posted by: James Munton (Jun 17, 2014 11:14PM)
Not sure why Mindpro is so troubled by the Bistro! It is very odd to have so many questions and concerns about a place he has no intention of visiting! Very odd! I thought I had covered pretty much all his questions when I said it is just a place to hang and chat with friends.

Mindpro, old bean, if you are truly concerned about it, just call me and I can answer all your questions so you don't have to stress about it all any more. No need to keep making snide remarks, especially about people I like and care about. I am sorry the existence of the place causes you to spend all this time typing out so many words.

As for the James Wand / Dr. Jim Wand... It is funny - when I first came up with the idea over ten years ago, I did a search and the only thing I could find was a porn star named James Wand! I always felt a bit bad that I snapped up the domain name and possibly hurt his marketing efforts. I don't know if he is still working any more! Perhaps someone interested in that kind of thing could do some research. I wondered at the time whether I might get some mistaken calls to do some porn, but I never did.

As for the a Google issue, Mindpro does raise a good point. Neither the old nor new Bistro can be indexed by search engines. If you do a search, the only thing you'll find is a restaurant in El Paso and this thread! Plus, you have to be a member and logged in to read the forum.

But really, people, why does my little site generate so much speculation? It really isn't that interesting or mysterious! And I am a very accessible fellow. You can email or call me for a chat any time.
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Jun 17, 2014 11:43PM)
Quite right James!!! I find people can be very odd sometimes..............especially magicians!!! :) JR
Message: Posted by: Jolly Roger (Jun 18, 2014 09:46AM)
I don't remember even filling in a registration form. One day, I simply arrived as if by magic. Then I lost my password but James was most accommodating in supplying me with a new one!!! :dancing: JR
Message: Posted by: James Munton (Jun 19, 2014 12:36AM)
I thought he had already closed his group. It doesn't show up on my FaceBook any more.

Thank you for your good wishes marjochan.
Message: Posted by: Destiny (Jun 19, 2014 01:59AM)
There's still a handful of us there talking about the weather - despite everyone's best intentions we were just never able to stay on topic.

Mark is harbouring an ambition to lure Mindpro to Busker's, but let's keep that to ourselves or Mark will kill me for repeating it.
Message: Posted by: Ken Northridge (Jun 19, 2014 07:11AM)
You know you've made it the magic world when you have people pleading with you to jion their various forums. Well done Mindpro!
Message: Posted by: jeremymar (Jun 25, 2014 06:10PM)
I am actually a member of the Buskers Café and can certainly confirm that it is an excellent place to be. It has all the things that Mindpro wants and even Danny Doyle is there too. Most of the members are full time performers and we even have a funeral undertaker to advise on dying a death as many performers do on stage as well as off. Do not be put off by the name. In actual fact although there are certainly a few buskers there the emphasis in recent years is on mentalism, trade show magic, hypnotism and of course Mark Lewis who has been there for years and never been banned. There is indeed an active kid show section but since this type of entertainment is the main money earner for the vast majority of performers naturally there has to be a section for that too.

Bob Cassidy is a member as is Flip. We have a Harry Lorayne section too although Harry is never there because no doubt he has forgotten his password. We also have a Richard Osterlind section..

But virtually EVERYBODY goes out performing for money. I sense that is the sort of thing Mindpro is looking for. If he is interested he should shoot Danny Hustle an e-mail. He can be contacted at www.buskerscafe.com