Friday, February 17, 2017

And we wonder why...

Why is it kids don't go to magic meetings or conventions as much as they used to? It's a mix of things. One of those reasons is they don't need those meet-ups to have meet-ups. With skype and facetime and other video medium they can share their creations immediately with each other. They don't have to wait a whole year to see and share what they have been working on. (Whether that's for the better or worse is a whole other post)

The other reason kids avoid these places are the grumpy old fucks who just want to dole out "advice" in the form of close minded rhetoric. Advice when delivered objectively is great. When it's delivered as law and nothing but this or that is right and you are wrong is not advice.

"Well how do they know that's gonna happen at a magic convention or meeting?", you ask? Simple. It's because they get this treatment online in the magic groups and forums. It happened to me. It happens to others.

A younger magician put out a utility device recently. It's not a bad piece of kit. Yes it bears some resemblance to some other gimmicks on the market but his is indeed different enough to justify it's existence. The problem comes in when the "experts" think something is similar to something else (even when it's not) and start saying shit like this:

"Be careful with that 100% claim.....any slight similarity puts it down to at least 90%."

"Has anybody NOT figured this out immediately?"

At this point they are just poking at the kid with sticks for no reason.

"But the lay people will want to examine the cards!" (Ah the mating call of the common amateur in the magic market place. The creator then explained he goes over how to have the cards handed out and examined and then got the following response...)

"Just because they don't ask doesn't mean anything other than you are too detached. You are cheating them out of a magical moment by leaving them with an unsolved puzzle. No more free lessons from me...get out your checkbook." 

Another "expert" decided to chime in with this:

"It is the magician that gets the (stronger) reaction, not the cards. I would love to meet you and prove my point. I can follow you with the two card Monte and get a stronger reaction than any of your four routines."

Dick move old man. The younger follows up with this:

"That's a bit harsh. You're basing your opinion on my skill as a perform off of a trailer. You've never seen me perform at a gig. To assume that you could easily get a stronger reaction is ignorant."

To which he gets THIS reply:

"Sorry. I wasn't talking about you as a performer but about the trick cards. (Nice backpedal there but you totally did.)  Makes me wonder why you still (7 years doing the trick) feel a need for trick gadgets?" (Wait didn't you just challenge this kid to a duel with 2 card monte which is a gimmick?)

As the final insult, after constantly comparing his gimmick to another one that is NOTHING like his, the younger magi put his foot down. The "wiser" guy replied with this:

"Yep, I was expecting a personal always happens with those who have no other retort." (It wasn't a personal attack by the way. Just being told he was wrong was enough to feel it was)

Why am I sharing the details of this you ask? It's because I don't want ANY of you to becomes these kind of people. I can already see the guys who are going to be these other people when they are in their 60s and 70s. They are pumped up full of ego and bitterness. They have "retired" for whatever reason and now ride a computer chair doling out advice (yes I recognize the irony of me typing that so shut up) in a world they haven't lived in for some time. 

This kind of stuff makes me mad and no one can/will speak up because you will get the same treatment. In the end, the worst offender of the two messaged the kid, called him a fool, and then blocked him. Sure would make me want to go to a place full of guys like that eh?

This is all I hear when I read stuff like this online


  1. Bizarro - While I can't, in any manner, disagree with your sentiments, I think you do a disservice to us old farts. I'm not sure which group you're alluding to, but it smells like SME. It has an enormous collection of self-centered, egotistical douche bags with minimal intellect and even less courtesy.

    I do, however, suspicion most of them were that way at age 25, as well as, 75.

    They must carry a punch list of stupid comments and choose among them like a Chinese menu - Read Tarbell - Buy The Book - It's All About The Entertainment - I'm An Actor - In My Professional Act - Thinking Like A Magician - It Flies Past Laymen

    I'm getting mad just writing this. The sad thing is, damn few of them are any good at their craft.

    It's also interesting the many of these discourses end with the "pro" getting offended and indignantly riding of into the sunset. Always, seemingly, having sounded like a total baffoon - even to himself, I suspicion.

    I can't blame the younger group from searching for other avenues - why put up with this?

    This quote from George Carlin is little trite, but says it so well:

    “Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.”


    1. That's why I made sure to be specific. I didn't say ALL older magicians are ass hats. I know plenty who are awesome and helpful.

      Why put up with it? The younger guys are told to and find out the hard way there are damaged people in positions of power who shouldn't be.


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