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Al Schneider
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Did some research and found this:

https://youtu.be/srG2XoHqobk

It seems to me he is using the add style.

Then there are those that favor cutting the rope into three pieces enabling the use of the three count such as the Mongolian bit.

This brings be back to my question. Which has more impact end, add, pull, whatever and is it worth the effort to use the pull method. Then it depends on the trouble you are willing to go through. Karrell Fox mentioned he finally got his act to fit into a cigar box except for his bang gun. Then, to the extreme, Del Ray did not fly to gigs so he could take some very large props for his close up act. Thoughts?
Magic Al. Say it fast and it is magical.
funsway
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Quote:
On Apr 27, 2016, Al Schneider wrote:
Funsway
As usual, you claim I said something that I did not.


You seem to resemble that remark. Everyone knows I was joking because of the Smiley Wink.
If you feel "dissed" it doesn't mean that I "dissed" you. That is projection.

It did seem curious that you limited the options to three and then discounted the first two to support your favorite -- possibly to support sales of your mentioned book.
Because of your reputation and pedantic style some newcomers might infer there are no other options to consider, roughly speaking.

The majority of my post was about the concepts of "ends apart" and "support of the pull method."

Yes, I feel they are "improvements" but not necessarily "better than" for everyone.
In fact, I recommend that everyone get your book first, and mine only later if they have learned the basics.

My eBooks have been available for years (NeckLacy and Remcut)." I purchase your books ... Smile again

The real issue is how well any C&R effect plays today -- method employed a distant third for me. Second most important? Appropriate to the setting and other effects in the routine

I agree with your earlier assessment, Al, that a "normal" person might show the pieces separate after a cut,
but how many people today have ever actually ever cut a rope at all? or know what a clothesline is?

Last time I did the "Shoelace Knot" a kid asked his mom what a shoelace was.

I did a C&R with a metal chain with medallion using wire cutters that went over well -- broken links flying all around,
but not sure if they liked the magic of the restoration, the uniqueness of the materials or the violence.

Note: I cut the chain, removed the medallion for some "single coin" effects, placed it back on the chain to be restored and handed it out;
thus, the restore was non-sequential to the cut and my hands free in between. I felt this combination enhanced the magical impact (Virtual?)

Not implying any superiority here -- just attempting to fuel discussion on alternative methods and props.
I will never be half the magician you are, Al, but can be creative.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst



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Sealegs
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The subject of the effectiveness and magical strengths of the basic methods; (end, add and pull) is an interesting one. I think I'd also include 'magnets' and 'hide' as two aldditional basic methods. Magnets I think is self explanatory and 'hide', would be where you actually do cut the rope in two, at or about the middle, and in the restore the centriazed cut is simply held and hidden.

While it seems natural to assume that being able to hold the two pieces apart from each other after a single piece has been cut would be a magically strengthening factor I'm not sure that one can make that conclusion.... Despite how appealing and straightforward that sounds. I think the structure of a routine has more to do with the magic robustness and strength of the effect than any individual elelments.

For instance take a routine using the end method where the script emphasises the importance of producing two equal lengths of rope from the cut... In such a presentation it seems to make more sense to keep the cut ropes in one hand, next to each other, in order to make such a comparison easier.

I think this example nicely illustrates that the effectiveness of being able to hold the ropes in separate hands is only more effective if there's cause for suspicion that things weren't handled naturally, or to put it another way, that they weren't handled in a way that one would naturally expect them to be handled.

This gives rise to the question... 'So... what is the way that one would naturally expect things to be handled?'

Cutting a piece of rope or string into two is something that people will be familiar with but it will also be something that isn't part of most people's everyday experiences. So what consititutes natural handling and what doesn't might not be something readily distinguishable.

It seems like common sense though that the actions that show the ropes separately ought to be more robust than those that don't...But magic isn't just about doing things and the actions we make..... It's about more than that.... It's about stories and narrative and scripting.

So if separating the ropes slowed down a routine that might actually in turn make the magic less entertaining. And the entertainment factor can add hugely to the effectiveness of the method. When people are engaged in the concept of what's being presented as happening, rather than being engaged with trying to work out what is actually physically going on (and I believe the former is more likely when an audience is being entertained) the entertainment factor can be thought of as helping hide the method. It draws the audiences' focus away from the 'how'. The 'how' might get dealt with, maybe, later but by then their own memories start to fool them possibly as much, or even to a greater degree, than any of the magicians actual methods.

So I think that in assessing the strength of any cut and restored routine one has to look at the whole picture of what's being presented.

One also has to bare in mind that an audience hasn't got anything against which to immediately compare what they are seeing. So while within a given presentation the 'end' method might be seen as being weaker than the 'pull' method both might be equally effective for an audience that isn't in a position to compare one method with another.

The last rope routine I worked on combined multiple methods. Such an approach can add yet more layers of robustness.

Ultimately I'd have to say there's no definitive answer that determines that, this method is more effective than that method.... I think one has to look at each routine on it's merits and determine if there's a better method for what is being achieved within the context of the routine. And if, say, there are definite benefits from using, say, the pull method over something else, one also has to determine whether the extra work entailed warrants the end result?

That of course will be down to the criteria an individual lays down for themselves. Smile
Neal Austin

"The golden rule is that there are no golden rules." G.B. Shaw
Al Schneider
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Sealegs
I appreciate your comments. The methods of achieving the restoring can be expanded. What about cutting a rope in half, putting in into a change bag, and pulling it out restored. I am not in favor of that but there are those that get 10 minutes out of it. While I also celebrate the pull method my intention on asking the question was to elaborate on some problems with it. For example, Dougini throws it to the audience to restore it. Karrell Fox would toss the rope into the air and catch it restored. I think that this can possibly obscure the magic. I visualize a system in which the method is done slowly in the hands. I believe it can appear a rope is cut in two, shown separate, and the ends apparently touched together and the rope is whole. Then, as you have pointed out, how much trouble does one go through to accomplish the magic weighed against the effect on the audience.

I think a significant advancement in rope routines is the Mongolian routine. With two cuts, the ropes can be shown to be separate without any other hardware. The real pro might say, "Well you need new rope after each performance, that is not professional." Then, is it not professional to try and do the best magic possible for your audiences? Some say no, just get them laughing and loving you. The magic does not really matter.

In wrestling with these problems, I came up with "Fusion." In this routine the rope is already cut. Four pieces of rope are shown separate. They are held in one hand and instantly change to a single solid piece of rope that can be examined. This is an additional method. It can be reset. Nothing is damaged in the routine. The pro might say, that is not good enough, I want it reset immediately.

Here is another question. Often the wizards of wisdom scream, it doesn't matter how you do it, it is the ENTERTAINMENT that counts. What say you? Is the method worth creating a magic event or is entertainment the driving force. In my opinion, you can forget about entertainment and focus on magic effect. A good magic method presented with clarity and well mannered behavior will tip an audience brain out of position. They won't care about entertainment. They will want to see more.

I have wrestled with these questions for 50 years. I am not suggesting a solution. The Mongolian concept is a significant advancement. But it is a significant advancement in method not necessarily entertainment value. That depends on the operator. Presented by a competent worker that shines his shoes, it will go over very well.
Magic Al. Say it fast and it is magical.
Ray Pierce
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Al, I always love your thoughtful thinking ( is that redundant?). I think even tackling the subject of what is the best of anything is an exercise in futility. As an example, a carpenter would never think of entering a discussion of what is the best saw. These are simply tools and there are many of them for many different and very specific tasks. Yes, if you were to reduce it to a very specific type of saw we might debate the relative merits of quality of steel and sharpness. In that way, I have very specific favorites when it comes to a specific move or technique for cutting a rope to get to a specific position. I have my personal favorites when it comes to different types of restorations of the same form. On the other hand, to question a macro effect under the term "cut and restored rope" is contingent upon so many personal requirements and what personal entertainment value you can bring to each option. I have honed and developed my personal favorites over these 50 years and even though I constantly seek new options, unless they can transcend an existing method, I will keep doing my best to polish and perfect the ones I already use.
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Al Schneider
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Ray Pierce
It is strange you use carpenters and saws for an analogy to the task at hand. I was a carpenter summers when I went to school. Actually there were many discussions about saw technology. I remember many times standing on the deck of a new house this subject came up. Of particular interest was the guards used on saws. Many carpenters thought a guard on a saw was more dangerous than a saw without a guard. One guard was of circular type. A lot of carpenters put a wedge in it to disarm the thing. Often during the use of the saw, one had to hold the guard with one hand while the other hand held the saw. That hindered the use of the saw. Some guards flipped back while the saw cut the wood. That appeared to be a handle one could hold the saw to guide it. If you wrapped your fingers around the guard in the process and the blade hit a knot, the saw could kick back and cut four fingers off. Perhaps you should rewrite your post with a different analogy.
Magic Al. Say it fast and it is magical.
Bill Hegbli
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Al, I have tried many times to actually start a discussion on the Café. It is impossible, and have given up that the café can be a discussion group and forum. It is just to much of an opinion forum, as I can only assume that there are very few that have actually went past leaning one method for a trick, or opened the package and put thought that is to easy, and put it in a drawer, without even reading the paragraph of the instructions.

Although, Al, you need to open up and see their side of a post, and at least acknowledge their viewpoint. One can find exceptions to everything or even make up an exception to just they are right. I would suggest you not fall for this, it is repent all over the Internet and the news. Taking any little thing totally unrelated, and make it sound like the truth.

It is all about buying the latest new magic trick, in this generation, they don't want old anything, they would rather buy the old method in a new package, and pay $200 for it, then to read it out of book for $25.

I can't comment of the Vishnu Rope trick, because I never read it, I only have the 1st 5 Volumes of Tarbell.

I have heard there were other forums that tried discussion topic, and deleted comments not on topic. The people that were deleted got angry and not long after the forums shut down. People have no control on the Internet, and just want to cause trouble and destroy everything.

Just my thoughts as I read these this topic getting out of hand.
Vietnam Veteran 1967, Sgt. E-5

Graduate of Chavez College of Prestidigitation and Showmanship

"Magic With A Twist Of Comedy"
funsway
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I spent a fair amount of time as kid watching houses being built. Back then floors were built with criss-cross boards and not plywood -- laid down and cut off by hand.
Power saws were hardly used at all. Many of the carpenters had a favorite saw, but one older guy was special.

He carried a cross-cut saw in a sheath on his back and no one else ever thought of touching it. When it came to framing his skills really came though - especially fire-breaks.

He would stand back and eye a space between uprights, then pick up a scrap 2X4 and hold against his knee. Out came the saw and with a single stroke he would cut it to length.

No measuring or marking. Then he would toss it to another carpenter to nail in place. Actually, he could keep three other guys busy. Maybe he saved them from cutting off fingers.

It was very magical to me. He made something possible that I didn't even know was impossible.

Most anyone can cut a board, just as anyone can do a magic trick. Most people never took the time to watch the show. I later learned that this crew did nothing but floors and walls,
and that each carpenter had a magical specialty. I also learned that more magic can happen when watching than talking.

....

Al's story makes me think of the magicians who do not follow the instructions provided by the creator -- looking for an easier way, or just not caring for the reasoning behind the design.
When an effect fails to produce the desired response they blame the trick or props or creator.

I often use a knife instead of scissors for C&R. The audience seems fascinated by the flashing blade -- possibly hoping I will cut off a couple fingers by mistake.
The return of the knife to sheath on my belt also provides a cover for steals and ditches. Never thought of using a saw Smile
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst



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Al Schneider
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Bill Hegbli
I am well aware of which you speak.
You are a fool if you think I am not.
I have talked to several good people that have attempted to bring sense to this forum.
They have walked away because it is not worth it.
Because of that, the fools remain in control.
However, there are those silent readers that value some of what they read.
When I have expressed the idea of not contributing, some have said that they value what I have offered and want more.
I view the forum as a microcosm of life.
I find the microcosm interesting to practice the game called life.
Magic Al. Say it fast and it is magical.
Bill Hegbli
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Al, okay, it was puzzling because you responded to the fools, and I did not know if you had realized their game as of yet.
Vietnam Veteran 1967, Sgt. E-5

Graduate of Chavez College of Prestidigitation and Showmanship

"Magic With A Twist Of Comedy"
Al Schneider
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Bill
Your post makes my day.
Magic Al. Say it fast and it is magical.
Ray Pierce
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Quote:
On Apr 29, 2016, Al Schneider wrote:
Perhaps you should rewrite your post with a different analogy.


I have been a carpenter for years as well building all of my sets and illusions for the past few decades. Yes, the guards on table saws are very frustrating in spite of the fact that a kick back messed up my left finger to a fair degree as I was building some huge cases for one of David C's Illusions years ago. Live and learn! I think your post was exactly my point. It is not possible to say that one saw type is "best". It depends on your use and application. Even the lowly cross cut saw has it's time of need. They are all necessary tools that contribute to building something great. All should be considered and have ready for the right application. Rope cut methods are the same. Then again, I teach something called dynamic creativity which utilizes a fresh approach to each problem and not relying solely on past techniques or methodology. We tend to stagnate when we use the same creative pathway to a solution time after time. But that's just me Smile
Ray Pierce
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Al Schneider
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Often creativity requires knowing that which has gone before to know when a new path is established.

My effort in this thread has been to list the present technologies.

And also describe the subtleties associated with each.

Then, one can consider new paths.

I was attempting to get the readers to do that.

Unfortunately the fools get in the way of this path.

I am a person of intuition not logic.

This means I will often not follow a path of logic.

Intuition is a fusion of things known to things not known.

True intuition is a fusion of things not known to more things not known.

Then the path of creating complexity that leads to order that again leads to complexity and on and on unfolds.

Then things that never existed come into reality.

This is my life.

I am often shunned.

But I can make a better C&R
Magic Al. Say it fast and it is magical.
funsway
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It is interesting, Al, that you consider anyone getting in the way of "my effort" to be disrespected. Your way or the highway, right?

Now you would label anyone "a fool" if they point out your view of reality (this path) is incomplete as to "present technologies." Others also can "make a better C&R"

Considering "paths" others than chosen by you as important are not "new paths."

It seems that your, "knowing that which has come before" is for others than yourself. Perhaps your genius should allow for a different set of rules --
but that does not justify a lack of respect for other's ideas, or any thought another is posting for any reason other than to inform and enhance magic as an art.

You feel you are "shunned." That doesn't mean that others have shunned you, however.
Maybe it is not your "way of thinking/creating" that is the problem, but the way that you choose to treat others that is "less than respectful."

I value your opinions, Al, but they are just opinions. As one older than yourself, I foolishly suggest "toss a little class into your act."
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst



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Dick Oslund
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Thank you, Ken!

You saved me a lot of time with your remarks above to MISTER Schneider.

BTW: Bob Ellis was no fool! (nor Jay Marshall, either!) Bob's VISHNU cut is not intrinsically wrong, (here comes the "but": But, IMHO, Leon Maguire's is simpler, because Leon "changes the moment". As Jay would say, "It's a matter of personal taste, and, small consequence."

When I showed the "convincer count" to Fran Marshall's "hard shell" lecture group in Chicago, 20 years ago, they STOOD UP AND APPLAUDED. I'm certainly not a genius. I found the count in an old magazine (Genii? Sphinx? --1930s)

I've been doing a C&R rope (various methods/routines) since 1946. I've even written a book on knot tying for the Boy Scouts!

Denny Loomis and I "invented" a routine somewhat similar to Pop Haydn's Mongolian, in the late '60s. We used the Germaine idea, Ken Allen's "I'll do it again" routine,and, Slydini's cut which produced the Nightmare lengths. It "finished" with a "bluff" restoration, BEFORE, the CONWAY, was published. We both used it for about 5 years. My presentation of it "fit" my HIGH SCHOOL program, and, it played STRONG!

I've read through Pop's routine. He arrived at his, independently. --We've never met. Frankly, I LIKE HIS, BETTER THAN DENNY'S AND MINE!

I wrote up my notes on C&R rope in the book, with full credit to Jack CHANIN, and Dr. Daley. I never met Dr.Daley. Keith Lingley showed me Doc's knot in '52. Jack shared a "million $'s worth of presentation concepts in two hours. (He was not only a maven! He was also a mentsch!)
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Sealegs
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Al wrote:

"The real pro might say, "Well you need new rope after each performance, that is not professional."

" The pro might say, that is not good enough, I want it reset immediately."

I guess it's possible for anyone to say anything but my experience of pro acts is they are interested in obtaining the maximum effect from the magic they present and preparation and reset times are way down the list of negative aspects of reasons for not adopting any possible method. (I'm thinking here in terms of cabaret and stage performances... I guess close up performers might think differently but I don't know any close up magicians that perform a cut and restored rope as part of their repertoire) The inconvenience that a particular hook-up may have on, say, one's costume or how it might affect other aspects of a performance is more likely, in my experience, to be the thing that puts a performer off adopting a "better' method.

Al also wrote:

" Here is another question. Often the wizards of wisdom scream, it doesn't matter how you do it, it is the ENTERTAINMENT that counts."

" In my opinion, you can forget about entertainment and focus on magic effect. A good magic method presented with clarity and well mannered behavior will tip an audience brain out of position. They won't care about entertainment. They will want to see more."

" What say you?"

Regarding the two positions, ... 'it doesn't matter how you do it it's the entertainment that counts'.... and ... 'entertainment doesn't matter it's the method and clarity of a well mannered presentation that counts' .... I would say I that I think it 's unlikely that I would want to watch anything from any performers that held either of these two views of performing magic. The latter sounds dull for its lack of entertainment and the former sounds dull from its shallow and hollow basis.

In my opinion this magic vs entertainment is a largely false premise to start with. I don't see these two aspects of a magic performance as being the antithesis of each other. Of course both positions can be taken to the extreme and in this case they look like they are opposites... but between these extremes I believe they can act to compliment and enhance each other. Indeed I would say part of the skill of a good magician is, as a performer, finding the sweet spot where there is both a;... maximum enhancement of the entertainment from the robustness of the method... and;... a maximum enhancement of the magic from the context within which it is presented. This will of course be different for different performers' personalities and stage personas.

If an attitude of, "well it's entertaining the way I'm doing it" is used as an excuse for not using a ;'better' method then the magician could be thought of as short changing themselves and their audience. Equally if a method is adopted purely for it's robustness without consideration for how it impacts the way it's presented (and maybe the way other routines are, as a consequence, presented), then the magician could also be thought of as short changing themselves and their audience.

Some of what should have been the strongest magic I've seen, hasn't been because I felt I was having to endure it and suffer it because the performer failed to entertain and engage me while they were presenting it. I have also seen, what should have been some great magic, ruined by performers' desperate attempts to 'add entertainment' into their performance.

But maybe these are just the views of a fool?
Neal Austin

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Dick Oslund
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Hello Neal!

I like your thinking!

Dr. A.M. Wilson (editor of the early "SPHINX") had a "wise saying" in the masthead of his "op/ed" page: "MAGIC IS AN ART THAT SOMETIMES INSTRUCTS, OFTEN AMUSES, BUT, ALWAYS ENTERTAINS."

I read that, when I was 14 (70 years ago) and I BELIEVED the good doctor! After several years of reading books like Maskelynne & Devant's "Our Magic", and Fitzkee's trilogy, and when I had a bit of performing experience, I realized that he was mistaken! MAGIC IS NOT INHERENTLY ENTERTAINING!

We magicians can make magic entertaining, if we use good presentation! Certainly our technical skills must be "up to par"!

When I stepped in front of 1500 high school students, with only a length of rope and a pair of scissors, I had to not only entertain them, but, also fool them! --Without making fools OF THEM!

I had my share of encores and standing ovations! (Otherwise, I wouldn't have had repeat engagements!)
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Ray Pierce
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A rope effect is the first real magic trick I learned in '66 and it is still a feature in my show. I have created new and original methodology as well as using George Sands Sandsational Rope as well. Yes, It has been a fulfilling journey leveraging my original routine as well as my new "Long Rope Cut" I have used in 7 different countries around the globe. My 3 rope routine was a key training tool for all of the magicians at Caesars Magical Empire when I was the Magic Director for that project. It was an object lesson in misdirection and so many basic magical skills. I'm so happy that rope magic will always hold a very special place in magical history.
Ray Pierce
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Dick Oslund
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YUP Ray!

A "hunk" of rope is a most PRACTICAL PROP! Next to a pack of Bikes, it has almost ultimate potential!

Rope EFFECTS are VISUAL, the PROP is VISIBLE, RECOGNIZABLE and PACKS SMALL & LIGHT. (In your pocket!) Rope EFFECTS are generally VERSATILE (play for almost any audience)and ANGLE PROOF, NEED NO TABLE, and, are SPOT ADAPTABLE (opener, middle, or closer!) Further many rope EFFECTS require little or no set up! PLUS!!! ROPE TRICKS ARE USUALLY WINDPROOF! (If you've ever worked a state fair grandstand show, you KNOW!

We owe a lot to those old timers, like G.W. Hunter, Ralph W. Hull, Harry Kellar, Karl Germaine, Harlan Tarbell, Milbourne Christopher Leon MaGuire, Edward Victor, Bob Ellis, George Sands, Bob Carver, Harold Denhard, ET AL! (I KNOW I've left someone "out"!!!) Oh yeah! Stewart James (SEFALALJIA) AND __________________(other(s) whom you may know of!) --OOOOPS! another Charlie Miller! --I used a preposition to end a sentence WITH!
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Josh Riel
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So, as a nobody who is noted for little more than people I've irritated, I'd like to go back to the OP.

Not minimizing the saber rattling and jocular Crowscockery of the last few pages...

Quote:
What do you think is best (or your favorite) for today's more savvy audiences?


The same as were for yesterday's audience: The ones that are good!
I don't need to say anything else, yet I will.

I'm cool like that.



I like Pop's "Mongolian Pop Knot" and Michael Finney's "Lady Rope Routine"
However, I like Michael Finney, he's a good magician, his magic is good because of that, not because of his groundbreaking "new" pair of trick scissors or gadget or never before heard of cut.
Pop, whom my wife and I had the extremely wonderful pleasure of watching his close up at the Magic Castle, and his stand up at the Magic Monday in Santa Monica this last weekend... Well Pop Haydn makes magic good magic simply by performing it.

I am in no position to tell you if the Mongolian Pop Knot is groundbreaking, as I am not a magical historian. But as a Person who LOVES magic, I would put his routine, his presentation against any other out there.

What makes magic good anyway? Not to a magician, we are too often the worse people to ask about good magic, per capita. (Now about the newest trick you can buy under $20...)
Have you ever tried to WOW your audience by telling them "Enter noted magician to other magicians" thought this next trick was good?
Would they be standing in ovation to your legitimate claims that no magician ever knew about the new principle you are using until recently when you bought it?
Would they tell their grandkids about the performer who did the tricks that JUST CAME OUT on Amazon and Penguin?

Were you aware that cutting a rope in half, tying it into a knot and slipping the knot off the end will blow a LOT of peoples minds if you are completely silent? Actually I've seen it ruined a lot of times by the *** magicians "patter".

Now, it's been a while since I've posted here, but I am going to be a mentalist here and predict that less than 10% of what I wrote was even read by any one person, and that I'm one of 5% of people who even reads anything here that read all the posts.
Magic is doing improbable things with odd items that, under normal circumstances, would be unnessecary and quite often undesirable.
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