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Tricky
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108 Posts

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Dude, how red must you have been!
james Smile Smile Smile
Pokie-Poke
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Bensalem, PA
883 Posts

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I would have made everybody switch to their other hand, what are the odds of having someone missing their left arm. and if you get caught both ways, have them sit next to each other so thay can clap Smile
ok, bad taste, but I used to ski with a guy with one arm and he would have loved it.
www.pokie-poke.com
The Adventure cont...
NickW
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Derby, UK
66 Posts

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Not much in comparison, but performing Twisted Sister out of doors at a barbecue turned out not to be much of an idea when the wind suddenly got up enough to spread the tabled cards...
Ross W
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Inner circle
UK
1703 Posts

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I reduced a spectator to tears by doing the TT cig vanish in her shawl. Just as I was about to put the cig in, she shrieked and grabbed it VERY nearly causing the cig to burn the shawl... I persuaded her to let me continue. At the climax, everyone else laughed and applauded - except her. She was in tears and told me that the shawl was handmade, one of only two in the world, was worth around £3000 - and was borrowed for the evening. Yikes! Could have been much much worse!
Author.
Twitter: @rosswelford
www.rosswelford.com
Telemus
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Everett WA
128 Posts

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Elks club hall, 300 people very formal. Cue music, cue lights, cue curtains. Notice dancing cane gimmic is quite hung up on my new unrehearsed Tunic. Hundreds of beads and red crystals had been painstakingly set by hand. I tore it away spewing beads on the floor, and the gimick did break. Now I have almost 3 minutes to fill. And a Stick with no reason for it.

I remembered I had a TT and silk, In my pouch (medieval act) so I used the cane to wave around the silk like a pennant. The silk became tangled. so I just danced for the next 2 minutes an Irish Jig kind of thing I got an applause! Then went on with the show. Then for the closer, I found my silk bloom deployed transit. So I closed by singing a song. I was physically ill at the end of the show.

What made my day was a lady I had used as a volunteer asked for my autograph at the end of the show. My first autograph! I got booked again for the following year.
What a rollercoaster. I learned not everything that goes wrong is a bad thing.

Red faced and heart racing from just recounting the story
Telemus
Logan
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Inner circle
2280 Posts

Profile of Logan
Oh boy, lots of stories here... but mine always makes me cringe just thinking about it!

Ya see, it was like this, I was performing for a girl, quite recently actually, who I've got this HUGE crush on... she's fair... beautiful eyes and lovely hair... but anyway, I got kinda nervous when she was actually LOOKING at me... I mean... I couldn't stop looking at her... whats more is what I was actually DOING! I wasn't really paying attention, I smiled like a goofball as I did my card tricks... hands were shaking like I was being electrocuted. That wasn't the bad part... nah... the bad part was when I became over-confident... I wanted to do the Impossible Location with 3 cards with my standard deck... she only had one friend... we needed one more person and this guy (her friend) came along and she grabbed him and told him to participate... I was kinda glad that she was actually into this stuff. So, they selected their cards and I started dealing the cards face up and face down... telling them that if they saw their card, to call 'stop' - they're not supposed to see their card... but nonetheless... a 'stop' was called out... I glared at the guy (who called stop...) and I said, "Your card came out?" and he nodded with a big grin Smile "YES!" and I was like... Smile

I saidd, "Ok, nevermind that trick, I'm not too good at that anyway" and I decided to do a card metamorphosis... so I show the guy a card... and I put it in my pocket and I show him another card, to which it enters his sandwiched palms.... then...I couldn't palm the top card... I just couldn't... I think my palms were sweaty or sumthin.. I just couldn't.... no matter how hard I tried... and she was just looking at me... with all smiles like an angel Smile and I was just like this Smile

I decided to improvise and say, "Alright, check your hand... you have my card!" and sure enough... he did... and I continued with the tricks... which all... failed... miserably... and she left saying that 'She had to go'.... I was sooo annoyed with myself... Smile

But I sort of have my own rules to which I follow... everytime I perform and it doesn't work out or someone isn't impressed... I'll make a mental note of that... and get back to them later on and SHOW them something else that will make them do this Smile not because I'm proud and don't wish to me downsized... but because I feel that to those that don't get amazed, are those that are left out... and besides... magic is for the people... not for ourselves...

Don't worry fellas... I got something planned real good just for her.... Smile

But honestly... think about it... where would magicians be without spectators? Smile

Take care all... hope to see more accounts here!

Cheers,
Logan
You've been hit by, you've been struck by, a smooth criminal.

Singapore's Hairiest Corporate Comedy Magician!
RiffClown
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Yorktown, Virginia (Previously Germany)
1579 Posts

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Short Version. There is nothing more embarrasing than accidentally forcing the wrong card. It kind of spoils the ending. I accidentally forced a joker once by forgetting to wipe the 2 from the deck. It kind of spoiled the intended effect. I didn't realize my mistake until the end of the trick when the audience all agreed that no it was definitely a Joker. Fortunately the smile is painted on so I could play it off pretty well without showing my mistake too badly. I usually keep the jokers in the box on top and bottom to protect the corners of the rest of the deck. Smile
Rob "Riff, the Magical Clown" Eubank aka RiffClown
<BR>http://www.riffclown.com
<BR>Magic is not the method, but the presentation.
Greg Arce
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It's good to know I"m in this kind of company. Let's see: I did escapes in my youth and almost drowned in my friend's pool when the wire pick I had in my mouth floated away... I was down to rebreathing my own air before I was able to shuffle the pick back with my foot so I could reach.

It feels like a real Houdini story now, but I was looking at death for a moment or two. I also had one of those pool experiences at a cast party where the only thing to bind me was someone's shoelace... but it was made of leather and starting binding real quick... did I mention I'd also been drinking at the time? Don't drink and drive or do escapes.

I had a bird practically die on me as I was performing in a really hot theater that had no a.c. When I produced it I had to shake it around so it looked alive... it did recooperate, but it wasn't pretty for awhile. Actually, I just realized that particular bird out lasted all the others... he was a real trooper.

Almost set fire to the curtains in a theater when I decided to make a bigger finish by loading my home made vanishing birdcage with more flashpaper. When that thing went up I backed up... they still talk about that at my Ring in Miami.

I set my bed on fire while practicing a new fire to silks pan. I went to slam the lid on the pan and hit it off my hand by mistake... the pan turned over and splashed all the now burning liquid onto the bed... I was twelve and pretty stupid with fire at that point.

Okay, and now the topper which I will know in advance that you guys will never let me live this down. As I said, I started loving fire magic about twelve or so and was pretty much of a daredevil about it. One day I got this brilliant idea that it might look cool if fire shot out of my nose. (Okay, I can hear the giggling starting.)

So, like the brain that I was, I rolled up two pieces of flashpaper and gave them the shape of two comets with tails. I pushed them up my nose with the tails sticking out... stop laughing until I've finished... I lit the tails and snorted out.

One problem: I had packed them in my nostrils so tight that they didn't come out. I can now say I'm probably the only guy to scorch the inside of my nose. You don't even want to know on what level that pain reached. Okay, everybody, deep breath... start laughing.
Greg Smile Smile Smile Smile Smile
One of my favorite quotes: "A critic is a legless man who teaches running."
Michael Rubinstein
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V.I.P.
4198 Posts

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When I was in the third grade I received a svengali deck as a gift. I brought it to the talent show tryouts, and started by showing the class that all the cards were different. They weren't - they were all aces of spades. No matter how I turned the deck, they were still all aces of spades! I didn't get selected for the show, and gave up magic for several years. Now, I only do coins. - Michael Rubinstein
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Mr Phil
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Tilton, New Hampshire
160 Posts

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Hello,

I have one from my early days doing twisting and magic. I would take a steak knife from the table and insert it butt first into the animal balloon. It was so cool looking (I thought). Well I was pushing in the knife and pattering away when my finger slipped, and the knife flew out of the balloon and stuck in the wall 8 feet away. Of course i acted like that was the trick, but the waitress at that table never trusted me again, Smile

Mr Phil
Mr. Phil & Co. Quality Family Entertainment, Guaranteed! (603) 286-3029 WWW.mrphilandco.com Snail Mail to: P.O. Box 31 Tilton, NH 03276
RiffClown
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Yorktown, Virginia (Previously Germany)
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I have to admit, I'd be pretty hesitant as well. Do you still perform this?
Rob "Riff, the Magical Clown" Eubank aka RiffClown
<BR>http://www.riffclown.com
<BR>Magic is not the method, but the presentation.
Mr Phil
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Tilton, New Hampshire
160 Posts

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Hi Riffclown,

Cool Picture. No I never did it again. I do not wish to impale waitresses. it affects the tip. Smile

No it scared me silly

mr Phil
Mr. Phil & Co. Quality Family Entertainment, Guaranteed! (603) 286-3029 WWW.mrphilandco.com Snail Mail to: P.O. Box 31 Tilton, NH 03276
WR
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Utah
945 Posts

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I was invited to do a church party. I did the usual effects and came to the rope through body effect. For this I use 2 1" thick water skiing ropes. Well I made up a mock legal doc. From the office of Burton, Copperfield and Houdini. It was blank except for the place to sign. I told them to sign it and that I would fill it in later (I learned this from my Brother-in-law the used car salesman.)

I had a volunteer come up on stage. I had two assistants come up. I did the regular jokes "1, 2, your not nervous are you... Anyone know the # for 911..." Etc... well when it came time to pull the ropes through the body something got twisted and instead of going through the body they tightened. The helper Let out a "UGH". as it did. I smiled and said that sometimes tricks don't work. Everyone laughed and thought it was a joke. I said I was sorry to the guy a million times that night. The next day in church I said I had fixed it and offered the same guy to do the effect with a thin wire... I NEVER used a helper for this effect again..

MOst magically yours,
WR Smile

It was TWO one inch thick Water sking ropes.
Smile
"Tell Em WR sent Ya."
J R Thomas
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Champaign Illinois
138 Posts

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Thanks for all the stories.

I will start with the Nacho incident. I will save the 9 year old slumber party girls in their pajamas grabbing at my crotch for later this month.

I was working a restaurant. I had been there about a year. A new couple walks in. The order drinks, an appetizer and dinner. The drinks are served and I start performing while the wait for their appetizer. I do my strong opening set and basically get nothing. I decide to try the John Bannon 8 ball effect ( force a black eight, fail to find it and produce a black pool ball.) I used a super ball eight ball.
The nachos arrive.
I produce the ball and manage to drop it. It bounces on the table and lands smack dab in the center of the enormous dollop of sour cream on the top of the huge pile of nachos.

Time froze.

The couple looked at the plate and then each other.

After about a 5 second eternity I regain my ability to speak and offer to bring them a fresh order.

The man looks me straight in the eye and say" Don't touch it....We spent all day moving and have been on each other's nerves since this morning. THis was just what we needed to break the tension."

The super ball has been gathering dust in my case ever since.
Those who hear not the music

Think the dancers mad
Dennis Loomis
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1943 - 2013
2113 Posts

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Many years ago, I was doing the full evening show: Magic-Capades for the third year in a row in Caldwell, Idaho. We always had to perform in a High School Gymnasium in that town. We arrived to set up and the same janitor let us in. We had four vehicles with the show, the largest being a Ford 9000 Disel Semi with a 48' trailer which housed all of our props, costumes, curtains, sound equipment, and still had a couple of tiny sleeper rooms for the roadies.

In those days we always arrived about three hours before the show. Actual set up could be done in two hours, but we didn't like to have to rush. We set up a line of curtains down the middle of the gym floor as our backdrop, Set up our P.A. System, and set up the 16 or so major illusions and dozens of smaller props we were carrying. Our curtain time was to be 7:30, and by 6:15 we had almost completed setting up.

That's when the high school students who were on the basketball team started to arrive. They asked what we were doing, and we told them we were giving our show there that night. They wanted to know where the basketball game was going to be. I was sure there was some mistake and that they were supposed to play elsewhere.

At 6:30 the coach arrived and started to rant and rave and scream when he saw all of our stuff all over the gym floor. He was especially upset over the animals: about a dozen doves, 4 ducks, 3 rabbits, a white peacock, and a South American Miniature Horse. It turns out that our sponsors, (The Lions Club) had changed the location of our show and never thought to let us know.

The janitor knew us from before and just figured that the administrators just hadn't remembered to tell him that this was the night for the annual magic show.

With the help of the basketball team, we just moved everything outside and then broke stuff down, reloaded the trucks, and drove across town to the other venue. Before we even loaded everything in, the audience started to arrive. We made a quick decision to cut out some of the harder to set up pieces, and to start the show with a lot of the smaller stuff that I could do out front, while the assistants set up the illusions behind the curtain. Rest assured, I always double and triple checked the location after that.
Itinerant Montebank
<BR>http://www.loomismagic.com
knightmagic98
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Frisco, TX
142 Posts

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Ok...here goes....

I had a moment of downtime in a Sunday morning brunch. I was practicing a move where a card flies out of the deck...try as I might, I could not get it to happen. When it finally did, it was beautiful...it shot out of the pack...spinning gracefully through the air...on its return, it went wide...finally coming to land in a woman's freshly served eggs benedict.

I was doing a Church show...giving my testimony while doing torn and restored newspaper...a routine i had already done twice that day...at the end of my final performance, the newspaper opened beautifully, and the load fell out the bottom. Luckily, I quickly said..."and the sin fell from my life!"

I was performing for an insurance company's end of the year banquet. They SPECIFICALY asked me not to do card tricks. But, being young, I thought "I have to do the Insurance Policy" So, I practiced a new method of forcing the card...which messed up in the show. I went to reveal how my insurance takes care of me...WRONG CARD!!

In regards to an earlier note about being in league with the devil...my sister-in-law ran an ad for my shows in a local Christian paper. She got a NASTY letter from a lady saying that I was obviously the Prince of Darkness...yeah, Satan is gonna mess up the Insurance Policy trick...I dont think so
Smile
mrbungle
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Something pretty stupid happende to me 2 years ago. I was at this friends house at night and he had handcuffs. He told me not to put them on because he didn't have the keys.

I thought he was joking and did it anyway. Of course, he wasn't and started laughing as I tried to get them off. After a few screwdriver and paperclip tries, it didn't work out. ... The store were he bought them was stil open, so I drove to the store with my handcuffs on.

I walked in and everyone in the store was giggling, the owner let me try every single key, but they didn't fit. ...hmm. I ended up going to a bar and the bartender opened them in seconds with a clothing hanger and I was free! I swear this is a true story.
Grandia Enterprises inc. 1974
BroDavid
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America’s North Coast, Ohio
3176 Posts

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I am rolling on the floor over many of these stories.

Mine are not as intersting, but they are real life.

I was talking with two Pastor friends about an outreach in their neighborhood, all was good until I said that I would use a few magic illusions to draw folks in. These guys have known me for about 6 years, and I have attended their church, and they have been guests at mine, so I was shocked when they both - almost on key - exploded!

"The Bible says ....." I tried to reason with them and even referenced Haddon Robinson (Radio School of the Bible, noted author, whose Preaching instruction books provide some of the most demanding, but fully Biblical Pastoral training) and they were not going to hear it.

So I said. "I can see that you are uncomfortable about this." So you pray and I will pray, and you let me know if you would like me to be involved. I never heard back on it, and the date has come and gone. Oh Well.

Another was a first time public performance for an 11 year who had worked hard on a variety of effects, but was particulary good with D'Lite's having even created a nice new move with it. So we decided to do a two man D'Lite routine in a Cafe setting. I was on stage with a d'Lite, and as part of the routine "threw it" to Jarrod. He grabbed it an went into his move, and a girl at the table in front of the stage started choking and coughing. She went on for several minutes, and naturally all eyes were on her. I watch carefully to be sure she was getting some air, and she was, and finally was able to stop coughing.

And at that point. The routine was pretty much dead. Poor Jarrod! He just stood there.

I nodded to him, hoping he would go on, and he was lost. So then I went back into the routine, and we got through it, but the disruption just destroyed that young guy.

Afterwards, I spent some time with him, and was pleased that his attitude was "Next Time!" we will get it! And we will, and He will.

In spite of the awkwardness and interruption, he was already thinking about what he would do in that case in the future, and how to be more open to a change in plans.

Experience is a good teacher. And a Bad Experience is the Best Teacher!

BroDavid
If you stand for nothing, you will fall for anything.
Devils Advocaat
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London
248 Posts

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Years ago I was doing the 'Electric Sawing Thru' and the power saw shoe-plate was not at a perfect 90 degrees. As I 'sawed-thru' the gaff on the side of the Bosch ripped through the topside edge of the stocks. The thing was brand new! Aaaaaaaagh!!! This was one of Peter Diamond's models - the best in the UK. I cried all the way home. Smile

Frank.
"My Karma ran over my Dogma..."
Payne
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Inner circle
Seattle
4572 Posts

Profile of Payne
Once had a kid pass out in the middle of my final routine. Watched him as his eyes rolled up to the top of his head and fell to the ground in a crumpled heap like a rag doll, his head making that horrible empty watermelon sound as it came in contact with the hard earth.
Needless to say the show ended there.
He turned out Ok though they were never really sure why he fainted, the doctors attributed it to him not having eaten for a while.
On a lighter note had a deer run through my set once which got a great reaction and would have been perfect misdirection for the effect I was doing had I know it was going to happen.
Just a couple weeks ago had a six year old helping me with my cut and restored rope routine at the Mediaeval faire I have been working for twenty years now. When I asked him if he was helping his father plow the fields, a question that usually elicits either a yes or no this kid responds "No, I don't have a father, he's dead".
Not much you can do to cover that!
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
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