Saturday, October 18, 2003

It's funny that magic should be cool again. (Some of these slang words just keep on keeping on, how come 'cool' doesn't go out of fashion?)

I like the exposure of psychic frauds, but then I enjoy anything that destroys dangerous illusions (delusions) like the false over-importance people give to religion, money, politics, etc. Unfortunately, many of the methods are (of course) the same. It is hard to stand by and hear co-workers talking as though David Blaine can levitate, and REALLY hard not to go 'it's just this!' [Warning:spoiler: don't go there if you prefer the illusion]

Everyone knows David Copperfield doesn't claim to levitate, he is a stage illusionist who can appear to fly...but I saw actors flying (live) on stage in Peter Pan when I was about 6 (1952). Mr Copperfield does a beautiful job of it, but it's nothing new. Blaine was walking in that dangerous territory that Geller took over (not just allowing people to be mystified, but implying even more). I saw a South Park with a David Blaine cult which was spot on. People wanna believe. There's little we can do about it. Silly explanations like 'The Masked Magician' stuff is OK, but dull. Trying to stop people falling for obvious cons and false claims is well-intentioned but almost futile (ever argued with a fundamentalist Christian about whether the Old Testament is actually the Jewish Torah? - I mean, I just say 'look it up' but I bet they don't.)

You can still get thrown out of the Magic Circle though, either for exposing tricks, or for claiming 'special powers' (although that's a fine line for mentalists and the Derren Brown's of this world). Here's an Angry Magician reviewing a rather crap program called 'Secrets of Magic' and here's the story of the Magic Circle asking the people who produced it to resign.Look at Sept 21st.

And, in passing, I find it hard to feel sorry for Roy after getting mauled by the white tiger. My cat used to scratch me sometimes, if I touched a nerve, (nothing personal) so if you own really big cats and then tap them on the nose with a microphone, it's kind of your own fault, in my opinion. I feel more sorry for the tiger.

So Mr 'chubby' Blaine doesn't seem to have died...most people are sure he is swapped out when the cherry picker goes up to clean the box. It's probably 'agents provocateurs' who throw the eggs and paint balls anyway (otherwise they would have no excuse to take a cherry-picker anywhere NEAR the box). Put him in the self-publicist performance art bracket and I say 'well, good luck mate' but "magic"? Naaaah...

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