Here is Rant Numbah THREE!!!
Why am I stuck In Magician Hell? #3
Written by: Bizzaro. The Optical Illusionist
What do you magicians and blondes have in common? They are easily distracted by shiny things. If it's new, hip, fresh, and all of them other yuppie-like words, then many magician hobbyists flock to it like a murder of crows. (Better than a flock of seagulls... same bad haircuts tho'.)
While working at some local magic stores, I have seen some of the most useless and overpriced crap being released into the magic world. Much like that retarded cousin your aunt keeps chained up in the basement, it was hard to get rid of and we usually kept it out of sight. Anyone remember Silver Shifter? In my opinion, it was 100% crap. 50$ for something that you could just as easily perform if you had any modicum of skill. As magicians, we release new magic into the world that is the newest sensation for a few months, capitalize on the ignorance of the teenage youth, and then regroup for our next onslaught. (I'm looking at YOU Jay Sankey and Henry Evans).
The internet is a breeding ground for misleading demos and flashy editing. In todays world the new stuff has NOT been audience tested for long enough. it just looks good on camera and that's all that matters. I personally never buy ANYTHING without seeing it performed first. Once bitten, twice pissed off. In a brick and mortar shop you know yer getting an honest fib. Camera's lie. Any person with a home computer, two brain cells, and no morals can make even a plastic bag and deck of cards look good. (And then charge you out the wazoo for it.)
On the upside we have online forums to get honest and un-biased opinions about the good, the bad, and the garbage. That is, if your definition of un-biased is a buncha kids and middle aged bachelors bickering at one another about who has the right to perform this and who came up with that. Used to be you had to go to a local magic shop or club meeting to get that kind of interaction. Now anonymity has made people brave and lazy. You know who you are.
Magicians create new effects and moves to fool OTHER magicians. How many new sleights are we bombarded by daily on magic sites that allow video uploading? Sometimes a gem comes along and it's all the rage. Anyone remember the Revolution Vanish? Looks great.. unless you like to dress nice or happen to be a skirt wearer. (Think of all those angry kilt wearing magicians). Then yer screwed and out a good chunk of change you could have saved for something important, like food... or a lap dance. If your personality and character is strong enough, you won't need the latest greatest fooler dooler. Real people in the world don't care how you do it as long as you CAN do it and do it well. Of course most of you would know nothing about that would you? Yer too busy kissing Daniel Garcia's ass for his products. Unplug from the intarweb, get out of the house, and go perform for some real people.
In the olden days you had to find the originator of a new move or prove you had some assemblance of skill to get taught the latest and greatest effects. Sure people sold their secrets and tricks in books and magic shops, but your worth as a performer was not judged solely on your parent's credit card number. We have become a soft capitalist group of consumers. A giant mass of un-informed sheep who would rather buy their art than create it themselves. It makes me want to line each of you up, get a running start, and slap each and every one of you in succession. Twice. Sure I sound bitter and perhaps a bit jaded...and I am. I know bitching about it isn't gonna change anything on a grand scale. However if I can open just ONE person's eyes... If I could get some of you to take the red pill and see what's in front of you, then this will not be a wasted effort. Don't be fooled by slick editing. Don't let the flashing lights and promises of greatness distract you. Learn to see through the BS, and you too can become a better magician. For those of you who choose to remain blind... I have my smackin' hand all warmed up.
Time to fall in line... which one are you gonna stand in?
(Stay tuned for another tomorrow in the evening and then the last one on the 11th with our anniversary contest!)