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Richard Kaufman
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This month:
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines "piffle" as "to talk or act in a trivial, inept, or ineffective way." Synonyms MW gives are:
balderdash, baloney (also boloney), beans, bilge, blarney, blather, bosh, bull [slang], bunk, bunkum (or buncombe), claptrap, drivel, folderol (also falderal), folly, foolishness, fudge, hogwash, hokeypokey, hokum, hooey, humbug, humbuggery, jazz, malarkey (also malarky), moonshine, nonsense, poppycock, rot, rubbish, senselessness, silliness, stupidity, tommyrot, trash, trumpery, twaddle.

All of this seems related to what magicians engage in during their performances. But here we are concerned with just one, whose name is Piff and the words "silliness, balderdash," and perhaps even "hokeypokey" apply. His name, however, is not derived from "piffle," even though his mind-reading Chihuahua is "Mr. Piffles." No, Piff comes from Puff, changed for reasons of familiarity and, likely, copyright protection. Did you know that Piff's dad is Pop? Played by Penn. Perfectly. (My wife is yelling, "Keep your Ps to yourself!" Not sure what to make of that.)
Anyway, Piff the Magic Dragon is on our cover. I interviewed Piff twice over the course of two days in Frisco, Texas, and then sent the whole thing off to Jared Kopf, who transcribed the interview and then wrote his own piece as an introduction. Piff then hijacked the interview (during his fact check) and pulverized it. I think it’s both funny and revealing.

Our columnists this month, following the article on the grumpy British dragon, are:
Hannibal, who gets lost under in Mexico.
John Bannon, who takes the Mexican out of Elmsley’s "Mexican Prediction."
Jonathan Pendragon, who has performed in Mexico, but that's not what he's writing about this month in "Panmagium."
In Martin Lewis's final Genii column, he spins a top on a bunch of ESP symbols before fleeing to Mexico.
Mike Caveney writes about that Nazi *** Kalanag, who did not follow the heads of the Third Reich through Mexico to South America.
Todd Karr brings us all the news in "The Eye," John Guastaferro touts three tricks in "Magicana," and Jon Racherbaumer slings another "Slant" our way. Tricks, videos, and books are reviewed by Danny Orleans, Nathan Coe Marsh, and John Lovick.
At the top of p.11 there are audio columns by John Lovick (who interviews Piff, politely) and Jon Racherbaumer (who referred to himself as The Perpetrator in his peripatetic youth), and some junk from YouTube that I found. Placate your pals by putting on a party!
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