The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The little darlings » » Crazy mom, public show (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page 1~2~3 [Next]
JamesinLA
View Profile
Inner circle
Los Angeles
3399 Posts

Profile of JamesinLA
Okay, here's a new one for me.
I'm doing a public show at a kids space I do twice a month. Very crowded this day so I have to be on top to keep control. I also had a staff member to help with the kids.

One little 3 year old girl--looked more like two--came up and stood next to me. We got her down again, but she kept coming up. Finally I tell a joke I learned from a Kidbra dvd which is great and always gets a laugh as well as the message across to the parent. So the little girl goes to her mom, who has been told in a joking way to hold her daughter.

30 seconds later, the kid is back on stage. I look to the mom and say I need help here. Mom says she's 3 and she can go where she wants. The staff member helps with the girl and we continue the show.

The little girl comes up again. I turn to the mom and ask her I could really use some help. Again, she's only three and she's having a good time. Staff member helps again.

The girl comes up again. I look at her and say in a jovial and joking way, "You're back." 5 seconds later the mother is 5 inches from my face cursing me out, using the f word in front of the other kids. "Don't you ever f-ing be sarcastic with my daughter!"

I stopped the show, went to the boss. He deals with the woman. I'm totally shaken up. Go back not knowing if I will continue show. But when I get back I say, "Let's continue the show." The audience claps. We finish the show. Afterward, 6 or 7 parents come up and appologize for this "crazy mom." One dad tips me a $10 and another a $5 just for having to experience that parent.

That was a first. Anyone else had something like this?

Jim
Oh, my friend we're older but no wiser, for in our hearts the dreams are still the same...
Jestnjoker
View Profile
Elite user
440 Posts

Profile of Jestnjoker
Some people just don't belong in normal society. I mean really. Some people have zero awareness of the way normal people around them function. Good on you for handling it.

I had a gig last weekend. I have a show that I do that is legitimately an hour long (in a very good way), and I have lots of audience interaction, cues for different responses, sounds, etc. Well there was this one girl in the front row who, regardless of my prompt or what every other sane human being in the room was doing, would do that terrible shrill scream that only little girls can do. Then she would giggle about it until she felt like doing it again. Eventually she was just randomly doing it. She was a completely normal, functioning child, she just felt like showing off or something. Her mom tried to stop her twice and I tried to play off of her a couple times, I even used her in my show, but eventually I just stopped doing some of my prompts because my ears were bleeding.
Jeff Wright
www.WrightEntertainment.biz
Voted Best Party Entertainer in Cleveland, Nickelodeon Parents' Picks Awards
Matthew W
View Profile
Inner circle
New York
2456 Posts

Profile of Matthew W
As bad as the child interrupted your show, the mother one upped her by reacting the way she did and only embarrassed herself and her child. Some kids can do no wrong in their parents eyes. This three year old was only being a three year old, but her mother was simply not being a mother.

The only way to handle this situation is calmly, as calmness only amplifies the other parties actions. Successfully handling a situation like this makes you look like a hero and the tips you received say you did it perfectly.
-Matt
Starrpower
View Profile
Inner circle
4070 Posts

Profile of Starrpower
I have decided against using those children in the show. I know many magicians feel that if they give the kid the attention he/she is seeking, they will stop their behavior. I disagree. All it does is reinforce the notion that bad behavior has positive results. I do not see the justice in giving nasty kids extra attention when the nice ones are doing as they are told and not getting the chance to be on stage. That's the problem with out world; the nasty, pushy, obnoxious types are allowed to have special treatment because they have learned that people feel it's easier to appease them than to put them in their place.

It's so easy to say what I would have done, since I am just an armchair QB here. I honestly think that after the 4th or 5th time, I would have stopped the show, apologized to the audience, and made it clear that if the Mom could not control her child I would be unable to continue the show (which is essentially what you did.) It's not fair to the audience for this little person (and her mother) to continue interrupting and spoiling the event for others.
MichaelCGM
View Profile
Inner circle
Oklahoma City
2262 Posts

Profile of MichaelCGM
Right on the money, Starrpower. Also, letting the "boss" handle the lunatic was good thinking, Jim. I've had only a few obnoxious kids to deal with over the years, but parents - like the one you describe - are usually at the core of bad-mannered brats. Myself, I might have whispered to the mother, "Ahhhh... now I see where she gets it," before ambling off to get the boss. Smile Again. though, you handled it well!
Magically Yours,

Magical Michael

MagicalMichael.com Smile Laus Deo!
Matthew W
View Profile
Inner circle
New York
2456 Posts

Profile of Matthew W
I should make myself clearer. I don't mean calmness will make them react more, it will make them look worse. Remind the person that they have a bunch of people looking at them. Sometimes people forget they are in front other people.
-Matt
Potty the Pirate
View Profile
Inner circle
4617 Posts

Profile of Potty the Pirate
How abojut this one: I did a show a week or so ago, and had the Birthday kid up helping. As the routine progressed, I noticed that he was no longer wearing the hat I'd given him to wear. so, I told him the magic wouldn't work without the hat...and put it back on his head. A few moments later, I saw his Mom taking the hat off again, and throwing it on the floor. I carried on for a few seconds, and then replaced the hat, telling him he had to wear the hat, in order to make the magic work. Within less than a minute, the mom took the hat off again, and threw it on the floor again. OK, I thought, forget the hat....so I carried on with the routine. then, the mom grabbed the kid, and pulled him into her lap. I gave her a bit of a dubious glance, and said to the kid that he needed to be standing up to do the magic. I made him stand up, and a few seconds later, the mom pulled him back into her lap. "Well, you really can't do the magic sitting down", I said.....hoping that the mom would take the hint. He stood up again. This kid was enthusiastically participating with the routine, and was a great assistant. But of course, a few seconds later, mom had grabbed him by the waist again, and made him sit in her lap!
In exasperation, and trying to figure how to deal with this (the routine just wasn't going to play if the kid was sitting in his mom's lap, where almost none of the other kids could see him), I said "I need you to stand up to help with the magic." Neither he nor his mom made any comment, they just stared at me. So, I ended up choosing another kid to finish the routine. Of course, I had everyone applaud the kid for what he'd done so far. But I never figured out what was going on. Did the kid have a medical condition, but the mom was too embarrassed to tell me? If so, why hadn't they told me in advance, so that I was aware?
Bloody strange, and I felt sorry for my little helper, who was so keen and great fun, but who, as far as I could tell, was being "mothered" and manhandled, because his mom seemed to imagine that I was perhaps belittling him in some way? I have no idea, really. It was one of the most peculiar occurrences I've ever had at any of my shows.
Potty Smile
Mary Mowder
View Profile
Inner circle
Sacramento / Elk Grove, CA
3647 Posts

Profile of Mary Mowder
I could understand the hat thing. Lice can be a problem and the parent has no idea if you clean your props. But coupled with the second problem I'm doubting it was about lice.

Ya' gotta wonder (cause that's all you can do).

-Mary Mowder
TonyB2009
View Profile
Inner circle
5006 Posts

Profile of TonyB2009
Potty, I would have said something to the mother. She was the problem, not the kid. Sometimes we can be far too polite to the headcases. And Mary, the mother's problem was not lice. She kept throwing the hat on the floor. She just had behavioural problems.

At a halloween show once for pre-teens (not young kids) I did the knife through arm. This had been agreed with the booker beforehand, and all the kids were reacting well. It was a great show. Then one mother began screaming, and rushed forward and tried to block me from their view. She screamed so loud she set off some of the children, and suddenly the atmosphere changed. Is spoilt the whole show. Absolutely not my fault. I have a very humourous style, and none of the children were in the slightest frightened until the banshee began to roar.
RJE2
View Profile
Veteran user
383 Posts

Profile of RJE2
Hehe James, it sounds like you definitely met one of the weird ones.

I have never had it happen in a show, but during a social event many years ago, I found myself rooming with a couple that had a 3 year old over a weekend. This kid was a terror and the parents did nothing about it. At one point, while we were out, the kid starts kicking some man (a stranger in fact) in the shins repeatedly and the mom and dad just ignored it The man had to hold the kid by the wrists to keep the kid from kicking him. I was appalled.

As to the lice, I never thought about it until recently. We do a routine that uses baseball hats on 3 kids and they switch them around as a type of monte. Anyway, my wife brought up the concern of lice and now we use cheap dollar store shower caps in the routine. Each kid puts on a shower cap before they put on the baseball hat. They keep the shower cap at the end of the routine, so they're never used twice. This keeps parents happy and I get a couple of extra gags out of the shower caps.
professorwhut
View Profile
Inner circle
Posts R US sold me
1342 Posts

Profile of professorwhut
There was a restaurant owner here in the U.S. recently banned children from his place.
He cited it was because of the parents, not the kids. Idiot parents who refuse to control their children.
After much soul searching about a signature, I decided not to have one.

TG Pop [aka ProfessorWhut]
Futureal
View Profile
Inner circle
1557 Posts

Profile of Futureal
Quote:
On 2011-09-17 11:47, Starrpower wrote:
I have decided against using those children in the show. I know many magicians feel that if they give the kid the attention he/she is seeking, they will stop their behavior. I disagree. All it does is reinforce the notion that bad behavior has positive results.


Agree. I've tried the whole "I'll give his kid a bit of attention in the show and that'll give him what he wants and he'll be good for the rest of the show" idea, many times. I don't think it's ever worked.
Danny Hustle
View Profile
Inner circle
Boston, MA USA
2393 Posts

Profile of Danny Hustle
Jimmy,

This happens a lot if you do a lot of public shows with tons of kids and no stage. Some parents even encourage their kids to go up which I really do not get. When it first happens I react surprised/scared, "Oh my gosh! how did you get here! Are you a magician? You appeared out of nowhere!" I then say [u]with good humor[/u], "Where are your big people?" Because sometimes the kid is not with mom or dad but perhaps grandparents or family friends. When the kid points out who their big people are I walk the kid back to them and I say to the entire audience, "Ladies and gentlemen and little friends, if I do not invite you on stage I have to ask that you stay with your big people. To the big people I ask that you please keep track of your little people as I do not want to accidentally fall over on one of them. I am a pretty big guy, not as coordinated as I used to be, and it is a safety hazard - more importantly I am not insured for it. Yeah, I know, but that's only funny till somebody ends up with a squashed kid - I'm speaking from experience here."

99.99999% of the time that does the trick but every once in a while you will run into someone - like the lady you describe. Sadly there is no real protection against crazy in our business. Sounds like you handled that end of it just fine.

Best,

Dan-
Image

"MT is one of the reasons we started this board! I’m so sick of posts being deleted without any reason given, and by unknown people at that." - Steve Brooks Sep 7, 2001 8:38pm
©1999-2014 Daniel Denney all rights reserved.
Alan Munro
View Profile
Inner circle
Kentwood, Michigan, USA
5700 Posts

Profile of Alan Munro
Quote:
On 2011-09-17 20:15, professorwhut wrote:
There was a restaurant owner here in the U.S. recently banned children from his place.
He cited it was because of the parents, not the kids. Idiot parents who refuse to control their children.

I can't blame the restaurant owner. Some parents have no common sense and no regard for the rights of others.

I think that crazy woman would have been more angry if her kid stepped in back of the performer and he fell on top of her. It happened during a birthday party show once. A toddler was allowed to roam into my performance area and I fell backwards over her. Luckily, she was only startled. That's the reason that I don't allow unauthorized kids anywhere near me when I perform. I have limited ability to move my neck and because of my height, I have huge blindspots where a kid can hide.

If I were in that position with a parent not restraining her child, I would have the other parents show their support for what I'm telling her to do. Peer pressure is a necessary tool that needs to be used, sometimes. Sometimes, as in a comedy club, a member of the audience may need to be ripped a new one, but without the profanity.
TommyJ
View Profile
Inner circle
Foxboro, MA
1749 Posts

Profile of TommyJ
Wow Jim, what a story. You did everything right by trying to be polite about the situation and look what you get. I had almost the same experience without the vulgar language. I was told by the mom "She just wants to be part of the fun." My response was "So do all the other kids."

Danny, I like how you handle the situation. In a nice way (like Jim) you're asking the big people to control the kids.
"Keep the Kids Laughing!"
https://www.tommyjamesmagic.com/store
Sam Sandler
View Profile
Inner circle
2485 Posts

Profile of Sam Sandler
Hey jim

you did good! join the club of meeting parents beyond belief!

I too have had some similar situations over the years.
however as one of the last of a dying breed those of use who don't give into political correctness I did this

the kid like you kept coming up and he was about 4 or 5 years old. he was just being a kid and having a great time. I had used him earlier in the show for a trick and I guess thought he was now the show

any who he kept getting up and I kept picking him up and putting him back on the floor in his seat. the parent was not doing anything so I took matters in to my own hands.

after like the 8th time I looked at the kid and threatened to Duct tape him to the floor if he got up again. he actually sat there for about 7-10 minutes but must have thought I was bluffing as he got up again. I grab my roll of duct tape and took a huge piece and rolled it and put it on the floor then grab the kid and ploped him on the tape. the audience was screaming and laghing it was a riot. I just stood there for a moment very proud of myself. with a big grin. watching as the kid was trying to get up and could not.

just as I was about to start the show back up the kid broke loose but the wad of duct tape stuck to his but and as he walked up to where I was the audience roared with laughter.

at that point dad stepped in and grab the kid and with a huge amount of applause the kid vanished with dad.

it was a really funny moment.
the show went on and a great time

no its not always the way to handle things but I did it that time.

yup some times I just have to question parents. its the new world and I frimly believe half no make that more then half the problems we have with kids today is driect result of lack of parenting.

if it were my kid that was doing this I would have been there right away and held on to her.

good luck in the future.

sam
sam sandler- America's only full-time DEAF Illusionist
http://www.samsandler.com
http://www.deafinitelymagic.com
Alan Munro
View Profile
Inner circle
Kentwood, Michigan, USA
5700 Posts

Profile of Alan Munro
Sam,

Remember, it's easier to tape them to a chair than the floor. That way you can wrap the tape around something. Use gaffers tape so that the tape doesn't leave a nasty residue, after you hand over the gift-wrapped kid to his parents. Smile
Sam Sandler
View Profile
Inner circle
2485 Posts

Profile of Sam Sandler
Alan- LOL yes Gaffers tape good suggestion!!

this happend when I was performing in Puerto Rico and the chairs were only for the parents in the back!
it was really a funny thing.

sam
sam sandler- America's only full-time DEAF Illusionist
http://www.samsandler.com
http://www.deafinitelymagic.com
Ryan Price
View Profile
Special user
winnipeg, MB, Canada
641 Posts

Profile of Ryan Price
A daycare worker here in Winnipeg got fired for actually attaching a child to a chair using duct tape.

A had a mom give out goodie bags during the show yesterday. Some people don't get it.
Alan Munro
View Profile
Inner circle
Kentwood, Michigan, USA
5700 Posts

Profile of Alan Munro
Quote:
On 2011-09-18 17:19, Ryan Price wrote:
A had a mom give out goodie bags during the show yesterday. Some people don't get it.

I had it worse. A mom started serving the cake during a show. I hope she doesn't vote! I had to declare an intermission. Some people make a tree stump seem intelligent, in comparison.

Quote:
On 2011-09-18 15:00, Sam Sandler wrote:
Alan- LOL yes Gaffers tape good suggestion!!

this happend when I was performing in Puerto Rico and the chairs were only for the parents in the back!
it was really a funny thing.

sam

Why is it that so many adults in Hispanic cultures talk over the show, if it's for kids? I'm starting to see that in all inner city shows, where parents are present. Then, they wonder why the kids show them little respect or act out. They show no respect for the kids.

I'm not one to be in favor of restricting freedoms, but I can understand why some would be in favor of having the population on Norplant, until they can show that they're capable of reasoning.
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The little darlings » » Crazy mom, public show (0 Likes)
 Go to page 1~2~3 [Next]
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2019 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.29 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL