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SamtheNotasBadasIWas

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A new magic theater has opened, not far from me and Saturday I made plans to see my first live magic show. The theater said they were taking precautions for the virus, but the show must go on,or so they said on their facebook page, so I made my plans. Because we are down to one car, which the wife had at work, I walked (well, I hobbled) over to my favorite taco joint which happened to have a bus stop in front of it. Stupid me didn't think about the virus and they only served drive thru and take out orders, so I ended up eating my tacos sitting on a rock out front and froze in the wind as I waited a half an hour for the bus to arrive. Long story short, I got to the location I needed to go, and no show and no magic shop open.

I waited in the wind for awhile and then, gritting my teeth and gripping my cane, began walking home as the buses only run every hour on Saturdays here. It's not really far, maybe a mile and half, but with my old injuries and my newly sprained knee it was going to be a meat grinder all the way. I decided to stop by Steven's Magic Emporium since it was on the way home to see if they had an extra copy of March's Linking Ring for sale so I could see the TMF parade. I made it to the Emporium and Joe Stevens (age 83) the owner was there. He didn't have any Linking Rings, he had it home, but he did have Genii, so I grabbed a copy. A dad and his kid came in and Joe immediately began showing the kid tricks. He did cups and balls, Imp Jar, coin slide, and pencil box. The dad bought everything but cups and balls. Joe and I then spent a very great hour talking about magic and life. He told me his first magic show he saw in 1946. Harry Blackstone Sr. was playing the Orpheum Theater in Wichita and he saw him do the Princess Karnac levitation. He, literally, gets goosebumps to this day thinking about it and he has the poster for the show hanging on the wall of his shop.

I don't have a cell phone (I know, right?) and he kindly let me use his phone in the back to call my wife to tell her where to pick me up. I showed him some of my cups and balls routine and he liked it a lot and he showed me several tricks as well. It was great fun. Eventually, my wife comes to the door, and I see her outside and say, "Looks like my wife is here."

As soon as she walks in the door the old rascal says in a loud voice, "Thanks for buying $300 worth of magic stuff from me today."

As I am leaving, I ask him how much for the Genii magazine and he says, "It's yours, enjoy it."

Well, I couldn't leave it at that so I bought the cups and balls set  that we were playing with for my grandson's magic set I am building for him. I wasn't thinking, or I would have bought more. I'm going back soon and get some sponge bunnies and some more tricks for my grandson's magic set.

My day didn't turn out as planned, but it did turn out to be a lot of fun.


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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #2 
Sometimes good things do happen by chance. I've visited Steven's several times. Joe is very kind. We shared stories about Gene DeVoe, the late owner of The Magic Den in St. Louis. They were close. Joe's son Mark is nice too. I was talking with him about multiplying billiard balls when he suddenly went into the back of the store and returned with a box of all sorts of balls, color-changing mechanical balls and other gems. It was fun to root through.

Sorry you missed the show and because of that, the Saturday Session. Rest that knee and work on something fun today.
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SamtheNotasBadasIWas

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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayJ
Sometimes good things do happen by chance. I've visited Steven's several times. Joe is very kind. We shared stories about Gene DeVoe, the late owner of The Magic Den in St. Louis. They were close. Joe's son Mark is nice too. I was talking with him about multiplying billiard balls when he suddenly went into the back of the store and returned with a box of all sorts of balls, color-changing mechanical balls and other gems. It was fun to root through.

Sorry you missed the show and because of that, the Saturday Session. Rest that knee and work on something fun today.


I was trying not to get angry as I walked home, these are unusual times, but pain, especially a lot of it, makes me irritable and I thought about how I was missing the session and how cold my fingers were and how they could have been better at telling people they were closing, etc. etc. 

But, it turned out ok. 

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The best time to plant a tree was forty years ago. The second best time is today. - Chinese Saying
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Alan Smithee

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Reply with quote  #4 
The world could be a better place even without the current situation, but it's refreshing to know that no matter how dark things get, there's pockets of sunshine here and there.

Incidentally, did you ever find out if the show actually did go on?
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SamtheNotasBadasIWas

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan Smithee
The world could be a better place even without the current situation, but it's refreshing to know that no matter how dark things get, there's pockets of sunshine here and there.

Incidentally, did you ever find out if the show actually did go on?


It did not, although today I found the announcement that they were closing. It was buried in their postings and I missed it because I joined after the post and I was going by what they had up top on their site. Oh well, I will go when they reopen. Who knows maybe I will get to perform their some day. Word has it, I am going to have a lot of free time soon......

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Anthony Vinson

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Reply with quote  #6 
Caveat: I am not directing these remarks at Sam, but posting them on this thread because they're relevant.

Folks, the current situation is potentially dire. It's not media hype, it's not a conspiracy, and it's not to be taken lightly. Even so, far too many are not approaching it without the proper gravity and attitude. Please, unless it is necessary, and sometimes it will be, remain at home. When you do go out, protect yourself through social distancing and heightened hygiene. Sanitize when you return to your vehicle after shopping. Do not attend events where there are large numbers of people. 

Get your news and information from the scientists and doctors on the front line, and not the talking heads. Follow the guidelines on the CDC and WHO websites, and trust them for the latest news, information, and critical updates on COVID-19. It's serious. 

Thanks, and stay safe.

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chris w

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Reply with quote  #7 
Sound advice, Anthony. I'm going out for groceries and solo walks through uncrowded areas (taking care not to touch anything) and that's about it.

I'm glad you were able to turn things around a bit with the visit to Stevens Magic, Sam. Outings without a car or cell phone can be quite an adventure, as I know from being in a similar situation myself. I've often wondered what kind of day I could have if I headed out on foot with no money or phone and only a deck of cards, showing tricks to whoever I encountered along the way. Would I make new friends? Would good things come to me in return? If I did "yes, and..." to whatever followed from sharing moments with people, who knows what might come of it?

Of course, these are musings from back when strangers were still getting within six feet of each other.
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SamtheNotasBadasIWas

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Reply with quote  #8 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anthony Vinson
Caveat: I am not directing these remarks at Sam, but posting them on this thread because they're relevant.

Folks, the current situation is potentially dire. It's not media hype, it's not a conspiracy, and it's not to be taken lightly. Even so, far too many are not approaching it without the proper gravity and attitude. Please, unless it is necessary, and sometimes it will be, remain at home. When you do go out, protect yourself through social distancing and heightened hygiene. Sanitize when you return to your vehicle after shopping. Do not attend events where there are large numbers of people. 

Get your news and information from the scientists and doctors on the front line, and not the talking heads. Follow the guidelines on the CDC and WHO websites, and trust them for the latest news, information, and critical updates on COVID-19. It's serious. 

Thanks, and stay safe.

Av 


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The best time to plant a tree was forty years ago. The second best time is today. - Chinese Saying
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Tom G

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Reply with quote  #9 
Hanging with Joe was probably better than the show.
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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #10 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom G
Hanging with Joe was probably better than the show.

Amen
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Robin Dawes

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Reply with quote  #11 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "Anthony Vinson"

...
Follow the guidelines on the CDC and WHO websites, and trust them for the latest news, information, and critical updates on COVID-19. It's serious.

Thanks, and stay safe.

Av 




A couple of other sites with solid info:

For general and specifically Canadian information, the Public Health Agency of Canada has a COVID-19 site:  https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/coronavirus-disease-covid-19.html

For raw data:

Johns Hopkins University https://www.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/bda7594740fd40299423467b48e9ecf6      - gives up-to-the-minute visual and numeric information about the world COVID-19 situation

Our World In Data - https://ourworldindata.org/coronavirus - the number of graphs and charts here is overwhelming, but here is a particularly useful one: Total Confirmed Cases of COVID-19.  It's just over half-way down the page.  It's a little hard to read but it is reproduced on this page in a larger format: https://www.visualcapitalist.com/infection-trajectory-flattening-the-covid19-curve/  (Note: the VisualCapitalist site contains advertising)   This chart shows the progress of the outbreak in all countries with more than 100 cases - it is useful for predicting the upcoming growth rates in countries where the virus is just getting established.

For summarized data for US:

Business Insider has detailed US information on the situation in all States of the Union:  https://www.businessinsider.com/coronavirus-in-us-chart-shows-daily-cases-increasing-2020-3
  (Note: the Business Insider site contains advertising)
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SamtheNotasBadasIWas

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Reply with quote  #12 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom G
Hanging with Joe was probably better than the show.


Could be, it certainly was enjoyable for me.

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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #13 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SamtheNotsoMagnificent


Could be, it certainly was enjoyable for me.


Sam, I've posted it elsewhere on the forum, but one day I was in Magic, Inc. in Chicago and asked if Jay Marshall happened to be in.  He was and we had a wonderful time, chatting about people we knew in common, his health, etc.  Wasn't too long afterward he left us.

If you go back, introduce yourself to Mark.  He is a super-friendly guy.  They had a guy on the counter when I visited Stevens and he was also very nice.  I think his name was Shawn, but that was probably 10 years ago maybe?
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