Mike Rogers – Flying Solowith Opinions

Columnist:
Mike Rogers

Flying Solo with Opinions

Once or twice a year, for reasons that make little sense, I feel compelled to express a few opinions. Normally this drivel causes me more pain than pleasure. Every time I do it I end up wondering why I subject myself to so much flack. Alas, I still can’t resist. So the firewalls are down and all flames sheepishly accepted. Readers have the last word. I am flying solo.

  • There are few things more irritating then having to watch Sponge Balls while trying to eat a salad in a nice restaurant (or even a bad restaurant for that matter), especially if the sponge balls need to be washed.

  • Being a “Professional Magician” has nothing to do with the quality of ones magic performance. Moreover, being a Professional Magician has nothing to do with ones knowledge of magic.

  • Many magicians, especially the sleight of hand close up magicians, tend to look down on the kid show magicians. This is quite sad. There’s nothing degrading about doing kid shows. In fact few magicians can effectively do kid shows. My guess is most of us got our first exposure to magic by being a kid watching a kid show magician.

  • Some of the world’s best magicians are amateurs, while some of the worst magicians are professionals.

  • A magician is NOT an actor playing the part of a magician. Most magicians know very little about acting skills. Conversely, most actors could easily play the part of a magician if cast in such a roll.

  • A true gentleman is a guy who does card tricks and promises not to do any. (I first heard of this as a guy with an accordion.)

  • A person leaving a message on an answering machine need only to speak clearly, slowly, and spell confusing words. There is no need to repeat anything. Remember, the answering machine can be played back as many times as necessary to hear something twice.

  • A person leaving a message on an answering machine should not make idle chitchat about the happenings in his life. The guy retrieving the message may be doing so from a pay phone at the Rome airport. The idle chatter just costs him money. Finally, how about the guy who leaves a message saying to call such and such number? Then when you call you discover he has caller ID blocking and you can’t get through.

  • I’ve never understood the phrase “A Classic in Magic.” Does it mean the effect has endured the test of time? If that’s the case does it mean it’s a good effect? How about all the bad tricks that have also endured the test of time? Are they also Classics in Magic? One of the most ridiculous statements used in advertising new effects is, “This trick will become a classic in magic.”

  • I think magic could easily become a self-supporting art form just as model railroading and radio controlled airplanes. By that I mean most magic could be done just for other magicians. Magic is almost there now.

  • I’ve never understood the phrase “It’s Good for Magic.” I especially don’t understand it when used in conjunction with a terrible public show given during the so-called National Magic Week. Other than magicians, has anyone ever heard of National Magic Week? How many can even say when it is?

  • Years ago the rule of the thumb regarding attire was to always dress better than the best-dressed person in the audience. Today I’m not sure that’s necessary, especially with almost every major company having weekly casual days. That’s not an excuse to look tacky or goofy though.

  • Feather flowers have never looked like flowers, and no one has ever been fooled into thinking they are flowers.

  • The Silk to Egg is still one of the greatest effects ever. People never forget it and kids love it. The same might be said for the Sliding Die Box. Incidentally, no one will ever manufacture a Sliding Die Box to equal those made by the late John Dahms.

  • Most layman viewers, when seeing animated effects such as Rising Cards, Chinese Sticks, and so on, simply write it off that the magician is pushing a button.

  • The best magic words I’ve ever read are found in the comic strip Wizard of Id. It’s also one of the best comic strips ever written.

  • If the Disney Company ever decides to produce magic shows in a big way the rest of us may as well pack it in. Nothing is more magical than a Disney production. Consider the Haunted House for instance.

  • Can anyone explain to me the value of the various law suites against the IBM? I doubt it.

  • Can anyone explain to me the value of carrying a membership card in a magic organization in your wallet? I doubt it.

  • I wonder how many magicians can accurately say how many times in his Chop Cup routine Don Alan played, “In my pocket, or under the cup.”

  • Many amateur magicians work more than some professional magicians.

  • I have often wondered why we never see anyone perform Ralph Hull’s Tuned Deck as described in Greater Magic. It’s a wonderful routine.

  • Watching Biro do card tricks is akin to Medieval Days when torture was the purpose.

  • When you pick up the phone and dial 316 683-9582, Stevens Magic Emporium, can you tell me how the person on the other end will answer the phoneIn other words, what will he/she say?

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