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Profile of FTAMagician
I do free work as a clown/magician (glad I wasn't getting paid for this) and was at a BOWLING ALLY for a gig...mainly just to do a couple funny things if anybody was looking at me and maybe a little magic for any kids. It's a GOOD thing that was the case because a bowling ally is the WORST place you could ever go if you wanted to try and do close-up!!!

I pictured getting paid for this and trying it...very FUNNY!

Today was the second time I'd done this in the last week...and it was even worse as there were few kids and more smokers!!

Believe me! EVERYBODY there is talking and there would be no time between their turns at bowling to start any effect and finish it. Plus...when they aren't bowling, they are watching their friends bowl so it'd be no use to ask if they wanted to see any magic!!!

I've worked (pay ot NO pay) alot of different gigs (even a B&D picnic! That went really well actually!) but a Bowling Ally is one place to saty away from unless you want to bowl and NOT do magic that takes any more than 20 seconds to do!!!!!

No wonder I was the ONLY clown in our group to do this!!!!

Just in case some poor beginner was thinking of doing his first walk-around gig at one!!

("..usually one must go to a bowling ally to meet a woman of your stature..!!")
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Profile of TheNightBringer89
Funny, my magic shop is located in a bowling alley Smile
"Dreams are born of imagination, fed upon illusions, and put to death by reality."

It doesn't matter if you're right or wrong,
If you're not like the others then you don't belong.
john blaze
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Profile of john blaze
Welcome to show biz, FTA
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Profile of vernon
Was booked to do magic for a German group on a big deal...but then it got changed to a bus...Still managed but that has got to be the worst...yuk
MJ Magic
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Profile of MJ Magic
If only I had read this when I started. My first strolling job is in a bowling ally and your right it sucks. Even today I was close to telling the manager thanks but no thanks. And I really need the money.

Help Smile
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Profile of r4bid
Just vanish their bowling ball or their scoresheet. Then you will have their complete and undivided attention (and probably will get a few bowling shoe marks on your face).
Lloyd McDonald
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Profile of Lloyd McDonald
I occasionally visit a friend that is an avid bowler. I spend time entertaining his team while they wait their turn. Next thing I know they have me down at the other end of the alley with a bunch of people.

A great venue...guess it's all in where we see opportunity.
Shawn D
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Profile of Shawn D
I would have to give the roller skating rink my vote for worst place. I did a kids magic show there. Talk about no room to put your stuff and very nosie. I was yelling just so the kids could hear me. I ended up pulling it off and will not rebook a show in that place.
Live and learn
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I have had the same roller skating rink show. The party room was too small for the number of kids at the show so they put us in the main dining area for the whole rink. I had kids all around me and no parents to keep the from acting the way they want. Not to mention all the other skaters that got a free show, which didn't make the parent paying for the show to happy.

When it was all done the manager asked me if I would be willing to do shows for other birthday parties at the rink and I declined. I try not to do shows, especially for kids, where I am not the main entertainment.
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Profile of mtmagic
This may not be the worst, but definitely challenging. I work for a ski resort doing close up & strolling on Friday evenings which is a good gig. They have me come several weekends during the season and perform around a campfire. Most days aren't bad but when the weather turns cold you really have to limit the amount of sleight of hand you do. After performing for two hours your frozen!
ed rhodes
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Profile of ed rhodes
I did a birthday party at a bowling alley once. Didn't get paid, my daughter had been invited to the party and I brought some stuff to keep the kids occupied. They seemed to like it, of course the fact that it was in a bowling alley was just incidential.
"All the world's a stage, but the play is badly cast!" - Oscar Wilde
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Profile of m@t
I have to disagree, the worst by far has to be in a bar and pub whilst England are playing football (UK) same kind of thing as if it was the SuperBowl Final in the US. Any magicians may as well pack up and leave, it's impossible to perform in this condition even at half time.

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Profile of DADE
Funny you should mention about a pub gig, when the football is on. I've been hired on Saturday afternoon to do some walk-around magic at tables etc. I have just realized there is a big game on this Saturday, Celtic vs. Rangers, its going to be very loud, busy and drunk people are going to try to show me a few card tricks(as they usually do). Any advise on how to handle this one?,bare in mind,i cant run and hide, I need the money!!!
Only when you've lost everything,are you free to do anything
Jon Gallagher
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Profile of Jon Gallagher
Gee... I've always heard that bowling alleys are so quiet, you can hear a pin drop.


I'll just be over here in the corner if you need me.

Hey! I'm finally a Dot Com!
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Profile of Vincenzo
I would have thought that a funeral parlor during a funeral would be the worst.
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Profile of FTAMagician
Actually...I'm friends with the funeral home owners here in town and we've talked about me doing magic there!!!

Some good lines are possible like... "watch'll KILL ya...the guy in the casket already saw it!"

FTAMagician ("just a working stiff")
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Profile of joseph
Hey, you took a "shot", but no one had any "spare" time to watch you. Even though you thought this gig was up your "alley", you couldn't "pin" anyone down for over 5 seconds, so just "split" and don't do anymore shows there. Just some g"utter" humor. Smile
"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler." (Einstein)...
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Profile of Chrystal
Haaaaaaa!!! That was very punny Joseph!!! You were on a "roll!!" Smile
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Profile of qenny
Hmm. I think I would spend my time in such a venue producing bowling balls from a briefcase. Except that isn't something that resets easily Smile
Sleightly Twisted
Michael Baker
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Profile of Michael Baker
The funeral home cracks me up! Anyone remember the funeral magic skit on SNL? Hilarious!

I've worked in a bowling alley locker room. That sucked really bad. The benches were screwed to the floor and spaced about 3 feet apart. I had to set up my tables, etc., and work in between them.

I was also hired to do a show years ago when I was doing a full-blown dove act that finished with the production of a big white duck. When I got to the "location" where this group was having their banquet, I found out it was at the far end of a train car that had been converted to a restaurant. Nothing could be wheeled on casters down the aisle... too crowded. Every case had to be picked up and carried over the heads of the people eating at the tables.

Other nightmares include:

1) a Christmas party where my backdrop was a giant (20' wide) projection screen showing the SEC championship game. I'm still not sure if anyone knows I was there.

2) standing on the sidelines in a high school football stadium at the 50 yard line

3) on the trampoline-like floor at a gymnastics competition

4) standing with my heels against the edge of a swimming pool

5) in the 250-seat auditorium of a psych hospital where the 8 people in attendance sat in the back row, except for one guy who sat front row, dead center with folded arms and a very angry look on his face.

My best? I worked the Christmas party for the employees at a local strip club. I got to share the dressing room with the dancers.
~michael baker
The Magic Company
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