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Ben Morris-Rains

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Hi everybody! 

I am starting a new thread as the other has become decently long and I feel like this post may get lost and it has important information. 

I am now closing the voting and here are the winners: 

The first book will be Close Up Card Magic by Harry Lorayne!!! 

Screen Shot 2017-01-05 at 8.47.05 PM.png    


I am still waiting on my physical copy (Don't order things one day before Christmas....) but I've gone ahead and picked up the digital version from Harry as well so I can get started on a sort of study guide/scheduling guide. I will make this available to everyone and they can use it if they want to. It should be printed and used along with the book so you can jot down notes or thoughts, etc. As mentioned you do not have to use it. 

The next order of business is the matter of scheduling. The two highest ranked choices are Saturday evenings and Saturday afternoons at 12 pm pst, which is the same time as the Saturday sessions put on by Rudy. This time, based on my own experience, seems to work out best for all. 

Screen Shot 2017-01-05 at 8.49.30 PM.pngI am making an executive decision and the first scheduled book club session will be held on January 21st, 2017 from 12 pm - 2 pm PST. The club will meet every other Saturday until we are finished with the book. 

My choice is based not only on experience from attending the Saturday Sessions at that time, but based on the data, Saturday works best for most people and I know that we are still able to include people like Gareth and Chi Han who are on the other side of the world. I know this won't accommodate everyone, but that would never be possible in the first place. 

I am hoping to record everything so anyone that has interest (and the book) can access the recordings. 

When I first posted this, I mentioned it would be laid back, but I wanted everyone to participate. In hindsight, you are more than welcome to join the discussion and just listen if that is more helpful for you. I want everyone to enjoy the book and discussion without feeling pressured to share or perform. 

During the first meeting we will discuss the first two chapters of the book. You are not required to learn or practice every single trick in the second chapter, so don't feel intimidated by it. I would suggest that you read each trick and take notes. Alternatively, those that are going to be there and want to perform could be assigned a trick so not everyone will be performing the same trick. I don't expect us to talk about all 20 tricks in two hours. We can decide democratically which ones should be performed/ talked about over the others. 

The meetings will be held via Google hangouts. Everyone that has voted/has the book/is interested in these meetings, please email magicbookclub2017@gmail.com so I can gather a list of emails for the invite. On your email, please include whether or not you would like to share something from the first two chapters. Please refer to this spreadsheet as to avoid overlap: CUCM Chapter 2 spreadsheet

I hope to have the lesson plan/study guide done by Monday! Basically, it will be a document to allow you to organize your thoughts. I know not everyone needs these sorts of things, but for me it helps keep everything on track and moving. 


Thank you everyone for your participation so far. I had no clue so many would be interested in this and it was a bit overwhelming! I admit, I was expecting maybe 10 at most. I hope this starts an awesome tradition of magic study and is a great way to start out the new year. Magic to me is a lot more than just sleight of hand and trickery. It helps expand our social relationships, intellect, and our critical thinking. This makes us better magicians, but more importantly, better human beings. Some magicians lose sight of the fact that we are people first, magicians second. I believe discussing the ideas in this book and others down the line will help us all in many ways. 


Please let me know if you have any questions, comments, concerns, or things I could do to make this better for everyone. I look forward to talking with everyone soon. 

Thank you,
Ben 
 

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Ben Morris-Rains

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Hi, 

I have been without internet due to Century Link's awful service. Anyways, I am at a Starbuck and here is the Study Guide I created for the first two chapters. If may help some of you and some might not like it at all, but I figured I would make it available if you are like me and like study guides. 

Download and then print from here: https://www.dropbox.com/s/mhylkwqfmobrq2g/CUCM%20study%20guide%20.pdf?dl=0 

I hope everyone that is participating is enjoying the book so far, I know I am! 


Thanks everyone,
Ben 

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Rudy Tinoco

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Reply with quote  #3 
Wow, Ben!! You did a great job with this study guide!

Thanks!

Rudy

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Ben Morris-Rains

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Thank you Rudy! I hope it helps a few people keep their thoughts organized. I look forward to seeing you at our first meeting! 

-Ben 

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Terrific work Ben! Thanks for taking this on.

I wonder if, at age 35, Harry ever imagined magic aficionados--of varying skill levels--would so immerse themselves in his first card book, 55+ years in the future?

In 1962, pop culture was entering a new and defining age of disposability--catering to the latest and greatest. The perception of legacy would become more complex and illusive as information and innovation overflowed. 

What will constitute magical entertainment fifty years from now? Only time will tell. What we do know is that this freshman outing, Close-up Card Magic, has stood the test. It is a bellwether and no informed practitioner can dispute that fact. The book reflected a change in attitude and sophistication--where the intimate performance of conjuring was concerned. It is a zeitgeist, a companion to an evolution of consensus about what would remain relevant... and what would languish in the realm of quaint nostalgia.

One could assemble the tools necessary from these 260-odd pages to spawn a career, to entertain, delight and astonish. Indeed, many careers were launched from this work. The curious were inspired to new heights.

While other notable creators would rise to become the coronated close-up innovators of their respective decades, will future generations interpret their work with similar regard?

Again, that is up to posterity to determine.

Today, Harry Lorayne is a Babe Ruth, a Charlie Parker, a Warhol of the art form we addicts call home. His longevity, relevance and continued contribution enhance his legend. But... his debut puts him in a rare and exclusive fraternity of important change-makers.

I hope all who choose to immerse themselves for the first, or hundredth, time in Close-Up Card Magic, will heed the author's original intent and follow through from first to last in an effort to wrest their own passion and--beyond that--move their beloved art form fiercely into the next fifty years.
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Ben Morris-Rains

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Reply with quote  #6 
Hi Everyone, 

I hope your reading has been going well! I still have quite a few tricks to go over in the next few days! I have performed one of my favorites twice now with a decent amount of success. I will discuss that further on Saturday. 

I purchased the G-Suite so that I have more control over the events and I will be recording everything with quicktime so I can upload it to Vimeo with a private password later. 

I sent out invites for Saturday. Those of you who have emailed me should have received that invite that has the link where we will be discussing the first two-ish chapters. If we don't completely cover all of it (or if there are certain aspects we need to revisit) we will do so next time. 

If you have not emailed me but you do want to participate in the discussion, please do so at Magicbookclub2017@gmail.com so I can get you on the list. Those that are not going to be at the discussion will be able to view the recordings, but I will need proof you own the book. 

Thanks again everyone! 

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Barrett S

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Reply with quote  #7 
Thanks for the management and great work. email on the way.
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luigimar

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Reply with quote  #8 
Already sent the e-mail. Thanks!
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Ben Morris-Rains

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Please let me know if you are not receiving the emails or the invites. On the 21st, please follow the link on the invite. You may have to copy/paste it into your browser. I'm still trying to figure out this process, so bare with me for a bit! Thanks again! 
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Stevie Ray

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Reply with quote  #10 
The link works. Thanks again and see you Saturday.
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luigimar

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Reply with quote  #11 
Got the message. Thanks Ben... and now to continue reading, getting ready for Saturday...
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Ben Morris-Rains

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Reply with quote  #12 
I have to admit I have quite a bit to get through tonight and tomorrow. If we cover everything I will be pretty shocked! 



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Ben Morris-Rains

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I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who made it. There was lots of great discussion! 

There were a few technological bumps, but I am working on making this flawless for next time. 

There will be recordings of majority of what was discussed. A few things might have gotten left out due to some storage issues on my computer. 

If you have the book but can't join in on the conversation, please send me a photo proving you own it and I will send you the password to the new Book Club section on the site where you can discuss the tricks and sleights openly. 

The recorded video will also be posted there. 

Thanks again everyone! 

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Ben Morris-Rains

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Reply with quote  #14 
For those following the Book Club or perhaps if you wanted a way to take quick notes when reading CUCM, here is the study guide for chapters three and four: https://goo.gl/GWsaJg

T
hanks!

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Harry Lorayne

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Reply with quote  #15 

    Hi Ben: Thanks for all!  I glanced over all real quick - and, no problem, all fine, but a couple of points stood out for me - I'm sure nobody else would notice or care. So, not important at all, but ... CLOSE-UP CARD MAGIC  and C-UCM should be hyphenated as shown.

     Statement that Three Times & Out is not a sure-fire method is not true. It IS a sure-fire method (if "sure-fire" means to have a strong ending).

     My title is FOURTITUDE not FORTITUDE. (Has to do with FOUR cards - that's the point.)

     The F in Force of The Lorayne Force should be capitalized.       So; as I said, not very important - just something I can't help; it's my compulsive proofreading.  Thanks again, Ben.   Best - Harry L.


 

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Ben Morris-Rains

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Lorayne

    Hi Ben: Thanks for all!  I glanced over all real quick - and, no problem, all fine, but a couple of points stood out for me - I'm sure nobody else would notice or care. So, not important at all, but ... CLOSE-UP CARD MAGIC  and C-UCM should be hyphenated as shown.

     Statement that Three Times & Out is not a sure-fire method is not true. It IS a sure-fire method (if "sure-fire" means to have a strong ending).

     My title is FOURTITUDE not FORTITUDE. (Has to do with FOUR cards - that's the point.)

     The F in Force of The Lorayne Force should be capitalized.       So; as I said, not very important - just something I can't help; it's my compulsive proofreading.  Thanks again, Ben.   Best - Harry L.


 



Hi Harry, 

Thank you very much. I sincerely appreciate it and will be making the necessary edits today. It is pretty awesome that the person who wrote the book can take a look at your little study guide you threw together and call out a few corrections. The internet really can be a fantastic tool. 

Thank you again! 
-Ben 

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Reply with quote  #17 
Can't believe I missed the first session. Hope I can get to the next one. I really want to join in on this.

Kingman

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Reply with quote  #18 
Hey guys, I too am interested in these sessions. Hope to make the next one.


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Ben Morris-Rains

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Hi, 

Kingman and Trini, please PM your email address so I can get you on the list of invites and the password to the book club section of the forum. 

Thanks! 

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Ben Morris-Rains

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Hi Everyone, 

I look forward to seeing everyone in about 45 minutes! Let me know if you can make it and are not on the invite list! 

Thanks,
Ben 

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Reply with quote  #21 
Hi Ben, 

I will be lurking while (unfortunately) working. Looking foreword nonetheless. Just might not be in the best position to contribute today.

Steve
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Ben Morris-Rains

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Hey Steve, 

No problem man! I hopefully will have the recording up by tomorrow night so you can view it later. I honestly didn't get super far into chapter 4 so it should be interesting. 



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Reply with quote  #23 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben Morris-Rains
Hi Everyone, 

I look forward to seeing everyone in about 45 minutes! Let me know if you can make it and are not on the invite list! 

Thanks,
Ben 


See you soon!!

Rudy

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Just got home and it says the videocall is full... [frown]
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Reply with quote  #25 
Not able to join today, but looking forward to the video.

Have fun,
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luigimar
Just got home and it says the videocall is full... [frown]


Me too. I think there must be a limit of 10.

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Rudy Tinoco

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Reply with quote  #27 
It was a fantastic time!

Thanks to all who attended and thanks to Ben for facilitating our time together!

Rudy

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Ben Morris-Rains

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Reply with quote  #28 
Hey guys, I apologize I didn't see this sooner. Something must be wrong because I pay for the ability to have more than 10 at a time. I will figure this out. Sorry again for those who couldn't get in. I will get the recording up ASAP. 

For those that were there, thank you again. My allergies were driving me crazy and I wasn't on top of my game, but thank you to the great discussions. There was some cool stuff shown and I think the recording will be definitely worth watching. 

Next time we will be diving into chapter four. We did cover a few things but these chapters are huge so no way we could get through it all. I will see you then! 

Thanks again! 
-Ben 

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Reply with quote  #29 
Thanks so much Ben for arranging the call/recording etc, really enjoyed the book club this evening, looking forward to seeing what everyone makes of chapter 4 next time.

Cheers,
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Ben (and bookclub members) -- Hello! I too could not enter the session today due to login issues -- the screen just froze up for me at the login (although I was a few minutes late due to a family emergency and that might have had something to do with it). I'm glad to hear the meeting went well and I'm looking forward to reviewing the video. Thanks again -- I know this must be a lot of work for you. Please keep me on the list -- looking forward to the next meeting -- johnny
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Mike Powers

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Reply with quote  #31 
I missed today too. Looking forward to checking out the video.

Mike
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Ben Morris-Rains

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Reply with quote  #32 
The second session recording is up in the Book Club section of the forum for those that were interested. It's about 2 hours but if you have the time there are a few nice things discussed and Rudy showed some cool ace cutting stuff! 

Let me know if you need the password (and you have the book). 

Thanks again,
Ben 

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Rudy Tinoco

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Reply with quote  #33 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben Morris-Rains
The second session recording is up in the Book Club section of the forum for those that were interested. It's about 2 hours but if you have the time there are a few nice things discussed and Rudy showed some cool ace cutting stuff! 

Let me know if you need the password (and you have the book). 

Thanks again,
Ben 


For those interested in where I learned that "Spectator Cuts the Aces" routine, it's from the Easy to Master Card Miracles series.

Here's Michael performing it along with Frank Garcia's, "Anytime 4 Aces".


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Ben Morris-Rains

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Reply with quote  #34 
Hi Everyone, 

Invites have gone out for the last chapter of Close-Up Card Magic. I hope to see many of you there! Feel free to bring up anything from the book during this last session, especially if you missed or did not get an invite last time. I apologize for the technical errors and invite mishaps the last time. 

It is scheduled for 3/11/17 at 12 p.m. PST. Thanks again!

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Ben Morris-Rains

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Reply with quote  #35 
Hey guys, 

See you in about a half an hour. If you didn't get an email and want to join, here is the link: https://hangouts.google.com/hangouts/_/modernconjurer.com/benmorrisrains 


PM me if you have troubles getting in. 

My allergies have been terrible so please bear with me. 

Thanks! 

Ben 


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Ben Morris-Rains

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Reply with quote  #36 
Thank you everyone again who attended today. I really had a great time and it was awesome talking magic with you all. The recording will be up by Monday. It is a two part process with rendering the huge file and uploading another huge file and I have to do it overnight as I work online. 

We are trying to figure out the next book. A few things will be changing regarding schedule, but we will get that figured out soon. 

I had a blast with this and I hope to make things smoother technology wise for the next round. 

Thanks again everyone,
Ben 

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Reply with quote  #37 
Ben,

What you did ain't easy and I know we all appreciate it. I was unable to participate today, but I could watch and listen to it on my IPhone, as I had to do other things. (Getting old sucks big time, but Blue Tooth enabled hearing aids are kinda cool).

I look forward to hearing the choice for the next round and the revised scheduling. None of that is simple.

My thanks to you and the participants.

i/m

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Mike Powers

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Reply with quote  #38 
Missed again! Drat. I was at Abbott's Close Up over the weekend. Michael Ammar and Bruce Bernstein were the lecturers. Great stuff.

Mike
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