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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Everything old is new again » » Your wand is an underachiever. (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Sardonicus
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The Left Coast, USA
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While reading a book entitled -Hocus Pocus Junior- by T. Harper and published in 1635, (found at http://www.marianotomatis.it/biblioteca/......lang=EN) I was motivated by an illustration to do some research into the history of the wand, specifically to learn when the "modern" version with a black body and white ends came into vogue. Naturally enough, I discovered that the topic had been discussed here before...and interesting reading it is, too.

But I also discovered something else: our wands are toys compared to their predecessors. This is according to a website that sells wands of the New Age variety. I thought of sharing it here because, well...it was laugh out loud funny at first. But now I'm posting this as food for thought, or as just a bit of a diversion for some of us. I won't link to it; you can cut, paste and search for it if you must, but there's really nothing else there other than the sage advice to refresh your "Crystal Wand" monthly by bathing it in the light of the full moon.

They say:

"There is archaeological evidence, which suggests that the origins of the magic wand dates back 50,000 years. The oldest dated wand made of rock and mammut eyeteeth was found in the New Guinea Jungle in Africa. It is believed that the first homo-habilis nomad wizards used this wand to conjure fire and water as well as to transform dry desert land into a lush jungle forest and that it was also relied on to put animals to sleep before attacking and killing them."

I want one. And a back-up.

My wand doesn't do anything other than misdirect. Well, unless I wield it in an unsafe manner and poke my eye.

The many and glaring errors in that text intrigued me, so I dug further. I learned that for the most part, this bit of copy was apparently stol...excuse me, "lifted" from an online Harry Potter fan-fiction site, of the sort where one person writes some fiction, then the next provides some more and so on. (We have an example of that here at the Café.) To be fair to the original author, when the wand seller lifted this text from the original they changed it slightly and magically made some substantial changes to our geography. My research also happily led me to discover that "mammut" is the genus for mastodons. So, for example the American mastodon is "mammut americanum". I learned a little, and thus this wasn't a total waste of time.

Anyway, there are some things to discuss or comment on here...or maybe not. As for myself, I found it interesting so I share it with the readers.
"Books break the shackles of time. A book is proof that humans are capable of working magic." Carl Sagan, Cosmos
Dick Oslund
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Inner circle
8097 Posts

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I remember (which in itself can be a challenge, at my age!) my first wand. I made it from a drum stick, some black, and, some white paint! I used it for a couple of years. (It "worked" just fine.)

Then I saw the late STUART ROSS, my first mentor, do the "basic" vanishing wand in 1946. I made a new wand! from a dowel stick, (and a pair of t*P's from the rest of the same dowl.) Stuart showed me how to roll up pages from LIFE magazine to make the "necessary", and, how to "darken" them with liquid black shoe polish.

That wand vanished at every show, for a couple of years! It worked "good". I still have a suitcase full of the "necessaries", for sale (cheap).

Old buddy TOM LADSHAW wrote up HIS routine in his book. (It's FUNNY and GOOD.) Tom & Billy McComb had been discussing "tricks seldom seen". Billy said, "Vanishing Wand." Tom did a bit of brain storming, and he gets "mileage" from the VANISHING WAND!

Maybe Tom still has a few copies of his book.

His routine can run five minutes (!!!) and, it meets ALL OF MY CRITERIA!

P.S....Greg Bordner (Abbott's) usta make a great little prop, which I've NEVER seen anyone DO. He called it "TANTALIZING WAND". It's a FUNNY, "perverse" gag, with a "VANISHING" W--D finish.(Lots of nice laughs in the basic routine, and a HEKKUVA LAUGH, at the blow off!) I've used it. (I made a very slight change to the "vanish". Instead of rolling it in a piece of newspaper, I use a silk (like the OLD van. candle.)

Enough of this reminiscing! (I use THAT word a lot, these days.)
SNEAKY, UNDERHANDED, DEVIOUS,& SURREPTITIOUS ITINERANT MOUNTEBANK
Slim King
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Eternal Order
Orlando
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If you've seen my lectures at the past Leakycons ..(now Geekycon) you'll know that my wand is not an underachiever .. Wizard Warz
https://www.facebook.com/wizardwarz/
THE MAN THE SKEPTICS REFUSE TO TEST FOR ONE MILLION DOLLARS.. The Worlds Foremost Authority on Houdini's Life after Death.....
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