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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » Whats offensive? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Kozmo
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People are often offended by a lot of stuff...think about it, really

Gathering a crowd you might say, "sir, come and watch the show or I'll pick on you about that shirt". Some might find that offensive...It's obvious that things like "son I'm your real father" is crossing the line...But what if some ole lady hears you say that first line and finds it rude!! And she complains, and then you are gone...Easy for a juggler. It's show time! Come and watch I'm gonna ride that big bike.....Or a tumbler who is doing hand stands...It is obvious...But you as a magician have a problem, your show is interactive, and you have to open your mouth...I often cross the line and ,I know this and do it anyways cause its worth the laugh even though you pay for it in the end. Gazzo the same thing only more...What can people say about your show, that's offensive?

Anything?....You are *** right they can even though you might find its harmless...And is it true that because you are a magician that its more likely that the audience will be offended just because you are interacting....**** right

You might think that just doing strong magic will work on the streets but you are wrong....DEAD wrong....You want the big hats you need to interact and what are you going to say that not offensive....Twisted bible pounding people will find about anything offensive

I lost my cool this weekend and called a guy a jerk...He was but so was I for reacting...Watched a little of my show and walked away, after I insulted a member of my audience. Where you from? Ah, I'll go slow. WOW!! Big insult...So he says to me I'm go do something worthwhile and then I responded, what a jerk! And his wife came up to me in front of 75 people and gave me crap while this putz handed me a flyer which I didn't look at that turns out was a flyer on why I'm a sinner and I better get on the right path...I didn't read, had no clue what it said and chucked it to the ground...at which point the jerk told me I was going to hell for that!!! *** You have got to be kidding me...

Its just not in me to be g rated...and I loose great gigs because of it but I don't find the real good street guys doing g rated material...pg-13 maybe

So I may end up chasing a pitch like the greatest of us are currently doing...wishing I could just settle for crap hats and play it safe NOT!! I try but its just not enough...Because sometime down the road someones gonna find you saying Jesus is great offensive.

koz
JoeJoe
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I live in the bible belt and find similar flyers all over the place, I tear them up on a regular basis. If you end up in hell, you can bunk with me koz. Smile

JoeJoe
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Kozmo
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Yea well, it sucks when you work your #$% off and loose a gig because someone thinks that you are offensive....I can do 200 people shows all day and then have one person say something bad, and BAM! I'm out ****es me off! I don't do kids shows and I'm not going to lame %^& magic. Just not going to do it, so this might be my price.

koz
Kozmo
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I cant beleive no one is replying to this.....this is good stuff...

so I say to the lady, sign your name on the card and your number right below....
oh yea, you need a pen.....so I reach into my bag and pull out a pen with the little chain like they have in the bank and say "yea, got this at the bank, they were just laying there...they should take better care of this stuff...they must be free with the checking account....offensive, why because you are teaching kids to steal come on fellas
koz
Jim Wilder
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JoeJoe-
The funniest post I've read in a while.

Kozmo-
Some people are going to be offended at anything, period. That is their hang up, not yours. Don't be what you are not. If you get lip service, maybe you deserve it in some cases, maybe not. Don't worry about it...
ed rhodes
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OK, _some_ people can get offended at _anything._ Is there something we can agree on that would be _objectivly_ offensive under any circumstances?
"He was born with the gift of laughter and a sense that the world was mad." - Rafael Sabatini, Scaramouche
Steve V
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Don't worry about it Ted, I've hit people who have done less so you are still ahead of the game.
Steve V
drwilson
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Ted,

I really go out of my way not to be offensive. I don't have a problem with rough street performers like Gazzo, it's just that my character is from a period during which rough entertainments were being cleaned up for women and children, everything about my act and language is done with Victorian propriety, although I slip occasionally in a fairly restrained way.

This hasn't prevented me from having people attempt to be offended at what I am doing, though. Once I was doing rope through body (Actually Hang 'em High by Bob Sheets) on the street, and I ask these two women to help me. I am polite and very persuasive, but one woman holding the rope is looking away the whole time. I pull the rope through my body, a guy up front just about loses it (it looks great!), but the women holding the ends of the rope don't react at all. One of them is looking away and the other is watching her. The guy who is reacting says, "Wow did you see that!" and the woman who was looking away says that she is a Christian, and believes that magic is evil. So what can I say, I let them go, obviously they don't tip, and I cut that show short.

I'm just telling you this story to show you that you can be as polite as a nineteenth-century deacon, but you are still going to get people who are offended by the existence of magicians on the street. How a rope trick is going to make me burn in torment is beyond me.

You can't please everybody!

Yours,

Paul
cfrye
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You weren't offensive...you ran into someone who actually wanted to hijack your crowd to get their own message across but didn't have the guts to take you on. It happens. Sorry it happened to you.

Curt
BroDavid
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And I have offended people by talking about God. It is part of my show, and I warn them up front, and then I talk about God throughout my act.

And sometimes, I have people who don't believe in God, take me to task for what I said, and sometimes I have "CHRISTIANS" take me to task becuase I didn't do or say what they wanted me to do or say.

In either case, I really don't care.

Who I am, is what they see. No more, no less. If I am going to do my act differently, it is up to me. Not them.

I never want to offend any body, any more than is necessary.... But some will be offended, no matter what you say or do. And yes, they can get you kicked off your pitch. But at the end of the day, you will have entertained far more than you have offended, so the scale balances in your favor. And you have to be yourself.

I have heard "harder lines" than that from Koz, and most of the audience enjoys it for what it is, good natured ribbing and part of the act. So I think I agree with Curtis, in that your offense was that you got people to listen to you, when the other guy wasnt able to do that. So he wasnt so much offended as he was jealous.

Don't worry Koz (I know you really aren't worried.....) but whether or not you go to hell, has absolutely nothing to do with whether or not you litter. So at least on that point, you are safe Smile

BroDavid
If you stand for nothing, you will fall for anything.
Skip Way
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Long before I knew what a "street magician" was, my grandad gave me my first real magic set. I performed for my siblings. I performed for my neighbors. I performed for the old couple who owned the motel and the four St. Bernards across the street. My hometown (Sandusky, OH) had beautiful downtown gardens and an old fashioned popcorn & peanut cart on one corner that always attracted me (and every other kid) like a magnet. I hopped on my bike, rode to the gardens and started performing magic next to that wagon for anyone who would watch...12 years old...a fearless kid on a new adventure...those were the days. Just for the sheer joy of it. Was having a blast until two older ladies approached me and started all these questions about my church and religious training...then pointed out that magic was sinful and "your parents should be ashamed of themselves." The cart operator came up to me as I was putting my stuff away and told me to ignore the old busybodies. His words..."They're so busy living everybody else's lives that they've lost theirs. You live yours, son." And so I have. I wish I could find him again to thank him and tell him what those few words meant to me.

Be yourself...you will ALWAYS offend someone...sometimes just by breathing. Let that be their problem. If your act entertains, draws a crowd and creates general good will...the few complaints that arise will vanish like so many farts in a hurricane.

:o) Skip
How you leave others feeling after an Experience with you becomes your Trademark.

Magic Youth Raleigh - RaleighMagicClub.org
BAH1313
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If being myself is found offensive, so be it. I find it to be mind over matter. I don't mind because they don't matter.
I am truly blessed to have a job where people are laughing all the time and everyone believes in magic....Come to think of it, I'm blessed to even have a job.
drwilson
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Skip,

Words to live by, to be sure! I have fond memories of trips to Sandusky as a youth (Cedar Point).

And let's not forget, as we think about the little hurts that we suffered on the street, that we do have some of their cash. The paper that it's printed on does have a nice way of soaking up the tears...

Yours,

Paul
BAH1313
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Nicely said Doc. Skip, quite a life's lesson for such a young buck. It makes me remember things my Grandfather said to me when I was young. I think I'll visit his grave and say thanks. Hopefully he hears me.
I am truly blessed to have a job where people are laughing all the time and everyone believes in magic....Come to think of it, I'm blessed to even have a job.
Kozmo
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If your act entertains, draws a crowd and creates general good will...the few complaints that arise will vanish like so many farts in a hurricane.

well if you are working anywhere where you are being paid then it becomes an issue,,,,because they have the money...i have done 2 festival in the last 2 weeks and got ccomplaints form both...yep, I'm offensive but its funny man!...no kidding its strong and I know it and it took me years to get it that way and I just don't want to change it BUT it limits where I can work ...

the point is if you are interacting it creates the oopportunity to find something wrong in what you are doing....my friend bro talks about jesus in his show, I wouldn't listen to the message but would watch the show...my mmorality is mine and my views are mine and I do beleive in god but I don't want to hear about it....no offense bro, I still love you....but I think that if people are offended then why don't they just walk away, what gives them the right to inforce their views on everyone,,,,change the channel...because they so strongly beleive in their morality that they think they have the right to change yours...to inforce their will...its crap!.....

I do say things I shouldn't, so does gazzo and well a lot of us do...its funnys and on the streets most will like it...if they don't they can just walk away...but when you are getting paid you represent the morality of whos paying you....and that kind of sucks!...gazzo is chasing pitches his whole life and its getting harder...hes here then hes gone cause they don't want to hear the complaints....i think hes brillant, we all do...but I don't want to not have a place to be in a few years...i don't like to conform but I might have to,,...and I just don't like it

I'm going to work in this place that pays me so darn well and I know that there will be a complaint even if I pull the real harsh stuff out....and I'm going to because its just that way...people like to complain


koz
Jerrine
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Some people will find something to be offended about and people like to complain. This is true.

My main goal is to entertain folk, sometimes with laughter. I'm not looking to stretch any envelopes, I'm not the shock Magician. Rickles is still Rickles and I'm not. I'm looking for smiles, genuine laughter, and amazement, and that's what I get. I'm not trying to walk any fine lines. If someone wants to give me the business about Magic being evil, etc. well I guess I'll have to take that one in stride. After all I'm a Magician and we Magish. plain and simple. I'm not however going to say or do anything that rubs the wrong way or slides against the grain of sensibility. Funny exists without making someone the fool, calling anyone out, risque material, foul language, etc. No really it does. Don't let modern comedians, movies, Comedy Jams, Howard Stern, and the like fool you. It does take more talent, intellect, and research. My opinion is its worth it.

No matter what your act, who is watching dictates its appropriateness, not you. You get to decide what your going to say/do, but they get to decide if it's going to fly or not. If your getting plenty complaints then it's time to either move to a more appropriate venue or listen to the audience. You can adopt the, "I'm going to do what I do." attitude and stay true to yourself and not be a sellout blah blah blah. You also, as with all things in life, get to be accountable for that decision. Sometimes that manifests itself in the form of, you don't get to play here anymore or they simply walk.

To answer the threads question, What's offensive? Listen to the audience and your conscience and you will know. Some all time favorites to divide a crowd.
Politics
Religion
Ethnicity
Sexual you name it, i.e. acts, preference, technique, even calling a little girl a little boy because you couldn't tell
Regional Humor, i.e. talking bad about Nascar down south, Yankee go home stuff up north etc.
Becoming too friendly with some dudes babe. Once again, he gets to decide what's too friendly, not you.
The 21 card trick

Y'all play nice now, ya hear?
rikbrooks
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All this talk about Gazzo. If any of you get the chance to watch him you should watch his face as he jokes. Sure, the jokes themselves could be offensive, but the look on his face, that half-grin, the cocked eyebrow - all tell a different story.

OK, some people will certainly be offended by Gazzo from time to time but his body mechanics make it clear that he's playing.

Gazzo is no fool. He doesn't just go out there and insult people. I suspect he's given a lot of thought to how to calm down what might be regarded as brusque.
TheAmbitiousCard
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Coordinating the jokes with the proper facial expressions is an art.
Currently, I'd probably get shot attempting this sort of thing to any extensive degree.
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Skip Way
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<< Well if you are working anywhere where you are being paid then it becomes an issue,,,,because they have the money... >>

Well, Ted...it seems to me that the options here remain yours. Rule No. 1 in any business is - Money Talks. If your client is concerned about the complaints he/she receives to the point of withdrawing you from the lineup then you can either choose to modify your character to meet the expectations of your client, find another client who respects your skills and persona "as is" or continue to gather complaints and hope the client backs you up. As Grandaddy used t' say...If you continue to run at a brick wall hoping the wall will step aside at the last minute...you're in for a nasty shock.

Paul..I lived a few blocks from the Cedar Point Ferry. My first time on stage with a real magic show was in the CP Ballroom with the local SAM Assembly in the early 70's. My first job was at "The Point"...I had my own broom and scoop, even! :o) Just before running off to join the circus, I was promoted to Frontier Riverboat pilot ("There's ol' Trapper Dan...Dan! Seen any injuns about?"). Never, ever thought I'd actually miss those politically incorrect days! :o)

Skip
How you leave others feeling after an Experience with you becomes your Trademark.

Magic Youth Raleigh - RaleighMagicClub.org
drwilson
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Skip,

So there! You had a job that some people, admittedly not in your audience, would have found deeply offensive.

I bet I would have had some fun on your riverboat, though, if you can imagine Dr. Wilson in short pants and a propeller beanie.

Yours,

Paul
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