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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The little darlings » » Bring My Rabbit, but Leave The Balloons In My Car. (81 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Starrpower
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I don't think balloons cause major problems, but if someone doesn't want me to do them, the solutions is simple: I won't do them!

If someone asks why I don't bring a rabbit, I will explain the risks of kids getting bitten, allergies, and harm to the rabbit from a crush of overexcited children (among other "cruelty to animals" issues). Why? Because my job is to sell the advantages of MY show!

I don't think I ever had someone NOT hire me due to lack of a rabbit. If a rabbit makes the difference, I'd re-examine the quality of my show.
Howie Diddot
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Quote:
On Nov 10, 2015, Starrpower wrote:
I don't think balloons cause major problems, but if someone doesn't want me to do them, the solutions is simple: I won't do them!

If someone asks why I don't bring a rabbit, I will explain the risks of kids getting bitten, allergies, and harm to the rabbit from a crush of overexcited children (among other "cruelty to animals" issues). Why? Because my job is to sell the advantages of MY show!

I don't think I ever had someone NOT hire me due to lack of a rabbit. If a rabbit makes the difference, I'd re-examine the quality of my show.


Mark;

Balloons do not cause any problems, unless a child chokes on a balloon.

I agree with you that if a mom asks about you not having a rabbit, you should endeavor to promote your show by empathizing the strengths of your program and empathizing the inclusion of a rabbit.

If the mom calls you, asks about a number of subjects, says "thank you" and hangs up never to call to book you, you never know why she did not book you;

I own a rabbit and I get calls but no booking, it could be because I do have a rabbit; but it's most lightly that they found a less expensive entertainer.

You've explained your show to me at dinner and in my opinion If the mom has never seen your show, I do not think you have to re-examine the quality of your show.
Starrpower
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Well, you have a point there. A mom whom has never seen my show may not know how good I am. But I don't want to rely on a rabbit in order to sell a show. If I can't sell a show without having to resort to "I have a rabbit", or "I don't do balloons", or my customer feedback relies on a commentary about a rabbit, I'm not doing my job either as a performer or a salesman. Rabbits are fine. I used them for years. I just choose not to have them, so I find other ways to both entertain and sell my show.

I can honestly say I can't remember the last time I was specifically asked to bring a rabbit, or leave balloons. I think we, as magicians, make too big a deal out of them. Copperfield came up at a time when large animals like tigers were common on magic acts but he hardly ever used animals and become the biggest name in magic, maybe the biggest ever. We all have to go with our strengths, and if one uses a rabbit, SELL IT AS PART OF YOUR SHOW! Make it earn its keep!
Howie Diddot
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I don't rely in my rabbit to sell my show, my show sells because of two things; my enthusiasm on the telephone talking to the mom and the tricks in the 4 large cases I haul into the home, plus the Jeff Jones Backdrop I set up.

I set myself apart from the other 400 magicians in the San Francisco area because 90% of the tricks are large colorful stage magic, the show does not have any coin, thumb tips, rope or card tricks and except for the Jokers Tube routine, I never get a comment from the older kids yelling out "I've seen this one before" I have no attache case that I carry in and place on a waiters X stand.

The rabbit is a classic ending to a magic show and it's very exciting for the kids to see and the reason I am there is to present to the kids exciting entertainment

In fact I'm now having an illusion custom built to use along with my live stock cage in my stage shows to expand my rabbit routine and include two rabbits to end my show in what I think will be a very unique and entertaining ending.

And I accomplish all this without blowing up one balloon.
TonyB2009
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Quote:
On Nov 10, 2015, Howie Diddot wrote:
Tony;

Do you even read my posts before you go off on a tangent?


I do. It's a shame you don't think before you post them. I have said repeatedly that no child has died from a balloon model handed to her from an entertainer. And to try to disprove my TRUE assertion, you post a link to a tragic death that did not come about in that way. Read the article you posted. Look beyond the headline and read what happened. It has no bearing on my point.

As for your rude attack on Al Kazam, I googled the very same phrase you claim to have googled, and his name came up FIRST on the search.

You say that you never claim to be the best in San Francisco, yet for a long time you marketed yourself as "Voted the best ventriloquist in San Francisco." I asked you about it in the ventriloquism forum here and you admitted you made it up. How does that square with your needless attack on Al?
Howie Diddot
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Tony;

Concerning my website claim;

You looked at my website at the time; did the website say I was the best magician in San Francisco? as Al is claiming he is the best entertainer in Perth? NO!

The answer is very simple and I explained the reason to you at the time; at the time I had that claim on my website, I was THE ONLY "ventriloquist based in San Francisco." with an office and a business license and since I was receiving positive feedback, I had it on my website; when another "ventriloquist" based his business in San Francisco, I removed the claim; at the time the statement was a true statement;.

About your post here, you have twisted the truth again. I NEVER admitted I made it up; when you first asked, that's is what I told you; I don't know why you have the need to misstate a fact; Why can't you post the complete explanation? you omit the whole explanation which I find to be despicable?

Concerning the balloon deaths;

When you write that no balloon twister has ever caused the death of a child, I still don't agree that you are making a true statement.

You reference the first link on the single death. why don't you not comment on the second link that states 3.000 children die in the USA because of choking on balloons?

Can you still say that not one of the other 3,000 children's deaths mentioned on the second link was not handed a balloon by a balloon twister?

Does it matter to you how a child dies? as long as the balloon is not given to a child by a balloon twister, let kids die?

Concerning you defense of Al Kazam;

My question is, why are you defending Al?

Can't Al explain his own actions?

I will answer your question anyhow.

I did not attack Al Kazam; Al decided to snoop around my website and ask the same question he asked a few years back.

My question is, why is he so interested in how I run my business and why does he feel he has the right to question the prices of my shows?

Now that I did the same thing he did, questioned something on his website. you call it rude. why are you not asking AL why he is claiming to be the best?

why don't you ask Al why he has no charitable program on his website.

Why don't you ask Al why is he questioning my business practices?

I am not rude, I believe it's fair, Al opened the can of worms; he asked me to explain a program, I asked him to explain a claim.

As far as his "giving back to the community that supports him, he reply was that "I trust him"

Concerning your Google Searches;

As far as you cutting and pasting the best entertainer in Perth, I see you don't know much about Google searches.

Google results have nothing to do with who is the best, it matches the phrase on a website and because the more popular magicians in Perth do not place untrue claims on their website, Al Kazam came up first.

If you paste a phrase into Google the phrase will come up first on a search, this does not mean Google agrees with the claim.

Al Kazam has made a claim on his website; if you cut & paste the wording into Google the search will match websites.

To search for the best entertainer; it is necessary to click on the links of the websites that compile votes of the best entertainers in Perth.

When you have the website open, you will see that parents that voted on the website DID NOT vote Al Kazam as "The Best" Al Kazam was way down the list of the BEST magicians in Perth; Customers that hired the magician voting on a website determines who is best; a Google search does not determine who the best is.

Have I made myself clear?

The bottom line is; a Google search only tells us that the phase is best matched to a phase on a website.,

I posted on my website that I was the best ventriloquist because at the time I was the only ventriloquist in San Francisco with at the time the best positive feedback.

Balloons are dangerous, but I do not post that balloons be banned as you posted in the past that rabbits should be banned from magic shows and the only use for a rabbit is on a dinner plate.

By the vote of the parents in Perth, Al Kazam was not voted the Best Entertainer In Perth;
TonyB2009
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Quote:
On Nov 11, 2015, Howie Diddot wrote:
You reference the first link on the single death. why don't you not comment on the second link that states 3.000 children die in the USA because of choking on balloons?

Can you still say that not one of the other 3,000 children's deaths mentioned on the second link was not handed a balloon by a balloon twister?

Does it matter to you how a child dies? as long as the balloon is not given to a child by a balloon twister, let kids die?

I did not comment on your second link because it is not pertinent. My claim was, and still is, that balloon modellers have not killed children. You cannot dispute this because it is true. You can quote irrelevant statistics all you like but it doesn't change the truth of my assertion.

As to the last part of your ridiculous statement quoted above, of course I care how kids die. I am a parent and am not in favour of kids dying at all. But I don't feel guilt for what I am in no way responsible for. Balloon modellers don't kill kids, except in your head. And from your postings, in your head seems to be a strange country.
Howie Diddot
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Tony;

I think since you posted that I was rude to answer Al on this thread, Will you post on this thread your comments about Al's claim about being the best entertainer in Perth?

Since the websites that compile votes of who is the "BEST" voted Al Kazam with a 7.2 on one website and another website placed Al Kazam at number 7 on the website and no independent website that compiles votes from parents that hired magicians voted Al Kazam as the BEST entertainer in Perth.

what are your thoughts?

Should Al remove the claim from his website?
Howie Diddot
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On Nov 10, 2015, Karen Climer wrote:
"when has a performer ever given out a a deflated balloon?" Every once in a while, someone will ask for an uninflated balloon, usually it's a teenager. This is not during a show, but if I'm doing line work. I always tell the teenager that I can't give him an uniflated balloon because it's a choking hazard. Of course, this drives the teen crazy. Obviously he is old enough not to choke on it, but it's fun to use that as an excuse. The real reason is that I'm not a balloon store. I'm a balloon entertainer. I don't provide balloons. I provide entertainment. Somehow that wouldn't be as much fun to say to a teenager.

In any case, Tony, you are right. If we thought of every possible problem that could possibly happen, we would all be out of business. The people would not even be able to get to our shows because it's possible that they could get in a car accident on the way to the show.


Karen;

I looked at your website and it looks like you are a very accomplished balloon twister.

You mention in your post in this thread that you "perform a show" and you twist balloons for children in line.

I understand the "line work" but I was wondering what type of show you perform as an entertainer?
Starrpower
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"According to the National SAFE KIDS Campaign, each year over 100,000 children under age 4 are treated in hospital emergency rooms for toy-related injuries, and 17 children die. Approximately one-third of the deaths result from choking; and one-third of the choking deaths result from latex balloons. "

Let's look at that. 17 die. 1/3 from choking, so that's about 5-1/2 kids. 1/3 from latex balloons, that's 1 child and part of a child.

Now, we don't know the circumstances. Was the child left unattended, maybe have a latex allergy that added to the choking (caused the throat to swell), etc.

So if I can find ONE child a year who dies from animal-related cause, should we stop using rabbits? It just seems like an overreaction for a relatively small likelihood of happening. The birthday child is more likely to die from running into the street waiting for than magician to arrive than from a balloon, so maybe we should stop arriving in vehicles.

LOTS more people die in traffic accidents, but we still drive our kids in cars. More die in airplanes (among the safest mode of travel), but we still fly. It illogical to stop using balloons based on such insignificant numbers.
TonyB2009
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Starrpower, thanks for the reality check. Hopefully some here will read that and cop themselves on.

Howie, you claimed that you had been voted best ventriloquist in San Francisco. A lie - there was no vote. Al never made the claim that anyone voted him best.

By the way, as a pure matter of fact, the second link you asked me to read (which I did and you apparently didn't) mentions 17 deaths, not 3,0000. Why do you keep wasting our time? Were you starved of attention as a child?
Howie Diddot
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Quote:
On Nov 11, 2015, Starrpower wrote:
"According to the National SAFE KIDS Campaign, each year over 100,000 children under age 4 are treated in hospital emergency rooms for toy-related injuries, and 17 children die. Approximately one-third of the deaths result from choking; and one-third of the choking deaths result from latex balloons. "

Let's look at that. 17 die. 1/3 from choking, so that's about 5-1/2 kids. 1/3 from latex balloons, that's 1 child and part of a child.

Now, we don't know the circumstances. Was the child left unattended, maybe have a latex allergy that added to the choking (caused the throat to swell), etc.

So if I can find ONE child a year who dies from animal-related cause, should we stop using rabbits? It just seems like an overreaction for a relatively small likelihood of happening. The birthday child is more likely to die from running into the street waiting for than magician to arrive than from a balloon, so maybe we should stop arriving in vehicles.

LOTS more people die in traffic accidents, but we still drive our kids in cars. More die in airplanes (among the safest mode of travel), but we still fly. It illogical to stop using balloons based on such insignificant numbers.


I had a conversation with a mom about making sure I only used my rabbit and that no balloons were part of my show because of an allergy issue with her child.

My intention in this thread was to focus on a conversation between the rabbit VS balloon subject with magicians using balloons and magicians using rabbits.

I wanted to discuss with members here on the Café if it was true or false that while a magician was having conversations with parents,

A. If more parents are choosing performers using rabbits and not hiring magicians using balloon because of a danger of a latex allergy and choking.

B. If more parents are choosing performers using balloons and not concerned with a latex allergy or a choking hazard.

There is a allergy issue with using either a rabbit or balloons.

It was a simple premise; I was looking for an intelligent exchange of dialog; then Tony posted that he did not approve of the subject of the thread.

Quote:
On Oct 29, 2015, TonyB2009 wrote:
Howie, we had a pointless and futile discussion on this topic that went no place, and now you are bringing it up again just a week later. You are doing it to be vexatious. There is no other purpose to this thread. And we all know that, despite what you may think.


After his rant, the thread was progressing normally until Al Kazam decided that his question which had nothing to do with rabbits, or balloons had to be asked.

Quote:
On Nov 8, 2015, Al Kazam the Magic Man wrote:
I took a peek at Howie's website, (link in a Howie post a couple above this) and to say I'm confused is an understatement.

I can't figure out your rational for the cheap (maybe free) show option you offer. Doesn't seem like a good strategy to me. Then again, I'm just sharing my opinion. Then the continual plugging of giving away rabbits to everyone is also interesting. Adopting them,,,,buying them, have the family come on stage for the presentation of the give away rabbit to the birthday child etc etc. All very interesting.


Al Kazam was correct one point, he is a confused man.

Then I asked Al Kazam a question, that Al Kazam has not replied to, so Tony answered in Al's behalf.

Tony posted that I was rude asking his friend Al Kazam a question about the legitimacy of his claim.

I answered both questions and now what I hoped would have been an interesting conversation is totally off topic.

Quote:
On Nov 11, 2015, TonyB2009 wrote:.
Howie. Al never made the claim that anyone voted him best.


Seriously, that’s your defense?

Why didn't Al Kazam just proclaimed himself the best entertainer in the world…LOL

Starpower,

The thread is dead; I won't spend the time answering your comment in your post.

The thread is confused, the thread has gone way off track; members with positive comments are no longer posting and because of Tony a member that sells a DVD on swallowing balloons, he will defend balloons at all costs because of an income stream and Al Kazam, a member that thrives to be confrontational the conversation is now totally destroyed.

I really am looking forward to Al Kazam's answer to my question in this thread,

My goal of the thread has not been achieved.

Members on the Café did find out two things from this thread;

1. Tony knows nothing about a Google search

2. Despite Al Kazam's claims and Tony defense of Al's title; Al Kazam is not the best entertainer in Perth.

but if Al Kazam can legitimately defend his claim of being the best entertainer in Perth, I am very interested in reading it.
jay leslie
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In a national survey, I was voted best magician in the world by 3 out of 4 people

I asked my mum, my dad, my brother and a hometless guy standing on a corner

But at least I have a survey to back me up Smile
MichaelCGM
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Quote:
On Nov 10, 2015, TonyB2009 wrote:Michael, no one has been able to produce a single instance of a child dying as a result of an entertainer giving out a balloon. That is what I am saying. I am not saying it is impossible, just that it has not happened. Of course it could. And a child could swallow a sponge ball and choke. So do we ban those? A chair suspension could fall and hit a prone child on the head and kill him. Do we ban that prop? Or do we use common sense? Balloon modelling has been going on since 1939. 76 years, and we are still awaiting Howie's doomsday scenario.


First, let me be clear. I use balloons in my act and have for over 30 years. And I will continue to use them. So I am not against balloons. I am simply addressing your untenable claim, specifically that, " child has died due to a performer giving him a 260. It has not happened." So the sponge ball example is irrelevant. This is simply opinion and not fact.

The study cited in the Journal of the American Medical Association, that was referenced in the Times article I linked to, listed proven statistics that support the argument that latex balloons are a choking hazard. The statistics did NOT break down what type of balloons and under what specific instances the choking occurred. For that reason, one cannot rule out 260 balloons, since they are, indeed latex. One can also not rule out, with any certainty, that a 260, given out by a balloon artist, did not later break at the child's residence and create one of the choking instances cited. So, both the 260 argument and the magician/performer argument are moot, because the study and available statistics do not address the specific source of broken or uninflated latex that caused the danger.

However, the study does, indeed prove that broken or uninflated latex balloons post a choking hazard – which has been Howie’s argument all along. To claim that choking from a 260, provided by a magician "as not happened" is completely unsupportable - ergo, opinion or speculation. That is what I'm pointing out, as well as pointing out that Howie’s assertion that balloons pose a choking hazard is, indeed well documented and supported. In fact, Howie clearly stated, "I don't post this warning to prevent other magicians and balloon twisters from giving out balloons, I post a warning here to warn other members to be observant and use caution when giving out balloons." So this is not about banning balloons or any other possible hazard from our shows. Rather it is a simple statement of fact about balloons being a choking hazard.

With respect,
Magically Yours,

Magical Michael

MagicalMichael.com Smile Laus Deo!
MichaelCGM
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Back on point. I've only been asked to not use balloons once in my entire career. It was for a Children's Hospital. They mentioned the latex allergy but didn't mention the choking hazard. I've never been asked not to use my rabbit. However, I stopped using livestock when I moved to a briefcase act, not just because of the space restrictions, but to eliminate the maintenance and upkeep of livestock. Balloons don't eat quite as much and are better potty trained. Smile
Magically Yours,

Magical Michael

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Rook
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Since my wife raises rabbits, I'm stuck with the upkeep anyway, so I might as well use them Smile. I've been asked not to bring the rabbit/dove on a few occasions. On occasion, the organizer would be concerned regarding health codes or potential allergies of the attendees. Once or twice, the client had moral objections to the use of animals in entertainment.
Those who don't believe in magic will never find it.

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Howie Diddot
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Rook; Rabbits will drive the children to a frenzy and I always end my show with the rabbit production.

A word about the USDA Licensee; it is necessary to have a licenses to perform with a rabbit in a magic show; the penalty is steep

The only number I have is the California region, calling this number will get you to the proper person.

The cost is only $40.00

Buzz
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TonyB2009
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Howie, you make a great secretary. You have found your vocation. Thank you for repeating this whole pointless thread.

Michael, I agree with you in large. There is a miniscule chance of a child choking on a burst modelling balloon. It hasn't happened yet (we all know that the publicity surrounding that would have brought it to our attention). It may happen in the future, but it may also happen in the future that a rabbit will trigger a fatal asthma attack in a child. My point, and everyone bar one agrees, is that we soldier on as we have been, because it is actually safe.

What Howie's point is - aside from being divisive and argumentative - eludes me.
MichaelCGM
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Quote:
On Nov 11, 2015, TonyB2009 wrote:

Michael, I agree with you in large. There is a miniscule chance of a child choking on a burst modelling balloon. It hasn't happened yet (we all know that the publicity surrounding that would have brought it to our attention). It may happen in the future, but it may also happen in the future that a rabbit will trigger a fatal asthma attack in a child. My point, and everyone bar one agrees, is that we soldier on as we have been, because it is actually safe.


I agree that we agree, pretty much. I also agree that the risk is minuscule. In fact, in one of Howie's links, that you referenced in one of your responses, deaths attributed to toys was, indeed 17. Only one third of the deaths were the result of "choking." or 5.66. And only one third of the choking deaths were balloon related or 1.88. So the risk is minimal. Of course, the link I provided cites the AMA as listing balloons as the #2 cause of choking deaths in children. Our ONLY disagreement is whether anyone can say that none are the result of modeling balloons, based solely on the publicity aspect. Other than that, we're on the same page.
Magically Yours,

Magical Michael

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Rook
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Good point regarding the USDA license. It's an added benefit that my magic rabbit, Hope, is becoming certified by Pet Partners (formerly the Delta Society) as a therapy animal next week.
Those who don't believe in magic will never find it.

-Roald Dahl
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