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George's Grumbles

Observations of club nights from one of the SCA'S longest serving members.

George Fitzpatrick

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You had to be there...Wednesday 11th Jan

Magic of the Mind or Mental Magic got under way with President Mike Novak introducing …

Host for the night Sami Allam.

Sami’s first performer was himself, he did a mobile phone prediction via an App, I’m guessing because it’s difficult to see and hear from the back of the room where I reside though a little bird tells me that this might be getting resolved after all these years…..

Mike Archibald opened with an effect using a small Jewel box containing assorted Gem Stones, new prospective member Robert O'Neil was invited to secretly or stealthily remove one of the Jewels and close the box lid while MA looking away. Mike then tenderly slide out a drawer at the bottom of the box and low and behold a replica Jewel matching the selected one appeared, a round of applause followed…Mike continued with another couple of effects.

George F up next performed an ESP prediction effect which also earned some applause though this was probably because he didn’t cock it up…

Newbie Robert O'Neil performed a prediction card effect successfully good for his first performance…. well-earned applause…

Jim Kelly next up did a predictable prediction with the help of David G and a deck of cards to polite applause, I think…

Kenny HURREN up on stage with a fantastic prediction of a selected word from a dictionary with over 200 pages and got it right for a change...

Break and Raffle ticket time…

Attendance only 17 but £46 worth of tickets sold, the Key raffle was £65 and JK unluckily picked the wrong key, awe, more polite applause so key worth £70 next meet…

Denis S next, he performed a comedy Identity effect and a card effect/ trick...take it for granted all performers received polite applause.

Marco‘s turn … a phone numeric effect with the aid of a white marker board to display the numbers which I think was a significant date…

David G next with a Picture Prediction…

Billy Diamond ....A couple of card effects…

Newbie Robert up again … card effect…

A visitor/prospective member called Patrick popped in just after the magic, sorry mentalism was underway so we didn’t get a chance for a proper introduction, he offered to do something which was a numeric effect using a borrowed mobile phone …

Pres Mike closed the show with a prediction which I can’t remember, sorry Mike my bad….

It’s worth mentioning that Ewan ‘mental’ Wilson was conspicuous because of his absence.

NEXT MEETING NOT TO BE MISSED TOMMY TEMPLETON LECTURE….

4th January You Had To Be There....

An attendance of just 14 members unanimously voted Vice-President Mike Novak to be the next President of the Scottish Conjurers’ Association, congratulations Mike, I’m confident he’ll do an excellent job...

Pres Mike’s first job was to inform us that during the Christmas show a visitor innocently filmed and posted the film on the internet unaware that filming performances without permission from the performers and posting on the internet was an infringement of club rules.

In future a statement will be made at the beginning of shows when members of the public are present also members should be vigilant if they see such happenings…

A suggestion by George F at the start of the season regarding a tutorial class was brought up and Jim Kelly volunteered to take the project on.

Tea/coffee break time and raffle ticket sales time.

The second half began with the usual raffle draw which raised £35 not bad considering the low attendance and cost of living situation in fact Kenny and George were heard enquiring if there was an easy payment option for a ticket…

Jim K got the first magic show of 2023 going with surprise surprise, a couple of card effects, plus a Goldfish joke about 2 goldfish one named one the other named two, I’m sure I’ve heard it at the club before but can’t place it !!!

Next up Alan Maskell (Dave) who carried on with a Goldfish tank commander joke, Alan performed a couple of effects or tricks concluding with a Doctor Who mental effect.

New Pres Mike N performed a kid’s type effect he claimed he won in a raffle…

Sami next, using about half a dozen different coloured wallets (I think) he invited 4 members to select a wallet which included a bland note in each wallet except the final wallet which predicted who would pick what wallet i.e. the Specky baldy guy JK would pick the yellow wallet, the Lady (scampi) Moira the blue wallet, can’t remember who got 3rd wallet, the trick went down quite well….

George F performed the Easy Magicians Card Trick without any cock-ups for a change, to wild applause…..

Mike N again with a twin wine glass transposition of cards as once seen on a Paul Daniel show…

David G close the show with a Jumbo 6 card trick the cards glued together and a card deck strike vanish ….

President Mike informed us that a few hours after our Christmas show in December there was an incident in the club rooms when sometime after midnight a rogue stray helium balloon activated the alarm system the culprit is believed to be one of the puppets playing a prank on custodian Malcolm who I’m sure saw the funny side when he got the call from the police got out of bed shouting …..

Ho Ho bloody Ho..

You had to be there….

Christmas party night 7th Dec 22
You had to be there......
Acting President Mike Novak opened the Christmas party show with a few club notices first being Magic Den was unable to take part in tonight’s show because he was not feeling too well though I don’t think we got a sick note from his mum, I hope he recovers and is able cover his Christmas party shows as there’s nothing worse for a performer than letting a customer down….

Pres Mike reminded all of Past President Harry Gallagher’s passing, a one minute applause followed by a one minute silence was held…

Host David Gallacher got the show going by introducing John Rossi, John who is like a Tommy Cooper tribute act though not loud and in your face did one of his excellent comedy magic routines he did about half a dozen different effects though it would be pointless if they weren’t different, he concluding with his now famous Cups and Balls using 3 full size waste bins and a 12in round balloon just as well he doesn’t travel by bus…

Next up we had George F who some off beat stuff got a few laughs and ended with a bill switch, changing an old Scottish one pound note to a new £50 note..

Jim Kelly then took to the stage and with the help of a volunteer entertained with a Sponge Ball routine.

Jim then invited Geo F to join him and the volunteer on stage JK then did his annual moan for a few minutes about the time 10 something years ago he volunteered a £10 note (although through the passage of time it’s now risen to a £20 note) for a Just Chance effect which used a shredder and 6 envelopes as luck would have it or bad luck in this case his £10 was well and truly shredded, you had to laugh as many did after they got over the shock or it might have been the other way round …..

Back to the show, Jim proceeded to perform a Poly Water filled cups routine which is usually performed by a magician and a vulnerable volunteer this time Jim added his good friend Geo F to the line-up, the trick ended with Jim turning a water filled cup onto his baldly napper and he stayed dry!!! The Volunteer did likewise and to the amazement of the audience he stayed dry!!! Cocky GF then with a water cup on his head inverted it and to the howls of laughter he got soaked by a full cup of cold water…Ho Ho Ho bloody ho…. JK then held up a notice which read PAY BACK TIME…..

Interval next with lots of party eats and a bit of table magic by Gerry Mac and Josh Tevendale...

Second half kicked off with the raffle which made a grand total of £71 this should help the treasurer with his energy bill, the key raffle £85 was not won DG being the loser couldn’t happen to a nicer guy…ho ho…

Back to the magic which restarted with relative newbie Billy Diamond (wonder what his fav suit is), dressed for a Xmas occasion Billy did 3 table top card effects which went down very well the problem with table magic is without a camera and screen some in the audience can’t see what is going on but Billy performed it well…

Alan Maskell who some refer to as Dave (don’t know why) got a couple of kids up on stage and did some nice magic stuff with a bit of comedy Alan could probably do with being miked up as the back of the class were struggling to hear some of the dialogue and lost out on his soft style humour…

Sam Allam, I don’t know whether to call him Sam or Sami no doubt he’ll put me right on that entertained with 3 effects culminating in a very very funny handcuff release …

Lastly just time to cram in a spot by pro magician Josh Tevendale who did some magic using a couple of un-faked Rubic cubes and Mario Gs’ son Dario…

It’s worth mentioning couple of kids Rowan who really looked like she was up for some fun and Mario’s son Dario him with the nice smile (got to keep in with Mario you never know when you need a train in a hurry) were nice additions to the night’s entertainment…. All in all I think most of the audience went home to their cold houses with a warm smile on their faces…

You had to be there….

6Alex Proctor, Mark Junnor and 4 others

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Highland fling Night 11th Nov 22

 

 

Highland Fling Night

For those who missed the Highland Fling night here’s a wee taste of what you missed or didn’t miss, there wasn’t a mass display of tartan, no one was wearing a kilt one simpleton was wearing tartan trues..

The program was excellently hosted by an English person Alan Maskell or Dave to his friends there were 15 members present and a new 14 year old junior member Kai McCullough, Kai to friends..

First up to perform was Marco an Italian person who claims to have Scottish blood but we’ve yet to see it.., Marco did a card effect with the aid of a cannon an Italian copy of Mons Meg the One o’clock Gun….. you had to be there to see it …

Next up was the first Scottish person I think David G who struggled with the Pat Page Jam Jar coins routine but brownie points for trying I think it was a Chinese copy without the Jam Jar … you had to there to see it …

I’m winging this a bit but I think next up was Kilsyth’s Scottish entertainer and bingo caller Kenny Hurren, Kenny performed the Glass of whisky from a Tartan Egg Bag … you had to there to see it …

Up next I think was Drumchapel’s own Scottish Barber who told me he was wearing tartan underpants so proof he’s Scottish, he proceeded to murder a Robert Burn’s mentalist book effect but fair play he returned later and cracked it after he found the instructions…..you had to be there to see it …

Finally President Magic Den did something unforgettable that I can’t remember but if you ask him I’m sure he’ll tell you how good he was…but you had to be there to see it …

Host Alan/Dave did some neat Scottish effects in-between introducing the acts including a faultless presentation of the Tartan Jam Jar coin effect I think DG was in the toilets being sick at that time… you didn’t want to be there !!

Mentoring night  17th Nov 22

SCA mentoring night…..

SCA mentoring night….. I would like to say you missed a great night of magic, unfortunately, an ok night would be a fair description….

I believe Sami was scheduled to host but for whatever reason he wasn’t in attendance…

President Denis deputised for Sami and if it was a card game you could say Denis did his best with a poor Haun…. the fact that Jim and George were the stars of the night says it all…

A total of 19 members and 1 visitor saw Denis open the program with an elastic band effect called Stargazer well ltz haw….. Den then did a packet card trick which was again a struggle for members see, if it was a very small room it would’ve been great ..

Den then mentioned a card effect called the Anniversary Waltz Trick ideally performed for a couple/partners, Jim Kelly mentioned to Den that he has his way of performing it both discussed their differences forgetting that there was an audience waiting to be entertained until someone suggested that they should both perform the bloody thing, Moira and Billy then played the happy couple.. I still don’t think the body of the hall learned anything, which unless I’m mistaken was the purpose of the mentoring night.

About this time Jim Kelly demonstrated a card move which regular members will have been familiar with and pleased to see it explained…

Eventually it was the afore mentioned stars of the show Jim and George formally known as the cock-up twins and for good reason which I won’t go into here although Jim did describe one of our famous Faux pas I’d sooner forget even though I wasn’t at fault….

To lift the spirit of the room Jim and George performed a version of what is popularly known as the Holy Grail of Card Magic the ACAAN (Any card at any number) they did a CAAN version or something like that….

The effect went something like this….

A spec was handed 5 cards numbering 1 to 5 on one side and 6 to 10 on the other side the spec mixes the cards any way they want and when totalled in this case the number arrived at was 20, nae forcing nae nothing ….

Two Decks of playing cards had been placed on the performer’s table before the number was known, one deck stacked with a playing card at a number only George and a Fairy knew this deck had been secured in a reinforced metal box. The other deck a mini jumbo deck was shuffled by JK placed on the table and fairly cut…

Billy Drummond was invited to come to the table and assist, he cut the Jumbo deck then when the sealed deck was opened Billy counted down to the 20th card turning each card face up to show each card was different which disarmed some of the cynics who would be suggesting a forcing deck.. the 20th card was then placed face down, JK took the jumbo deck fanned the cards face out towards the audience to show one card was reversed this card was removed and placed face down on the table, after an enthusiastic foot drum roll you could sense the excitement in the room George displayed his card the 10 of Diamonds….Jim turned over the Jumbo card and the look on his wee sonsie face told us all was not right, his card the 9 of diamonds was as near an exact match as is possible, good if you like near matches some members clocked the twist others thought it was a Jim and George bog standard cock-up, after some great acting by both a nearby envelope was notice and opened by JK, 6 sheets with a William Topaz McGonagall type poem was read out by Jim clearly stating that the trick was meant to show that the cards would be OOT BY WAN ….

Members were on their feet punching the air with joy and relief or maybe it was just polite applause …..You had to be there to see it…

When George calmed down he proceeded to perform and explain his no Thumb Tip bill switch, he changed an old pound note into a US dollar bill… great stuff worth the cost of admission someone was heard to say..

I think Mike Novak was scheduled to go on next but Mike always keen to perform reneged,...maybe the stars weren’t in the correct position with the moon….

Gerry McKendry then informed members that he would be available in the tearoom if anyone would like to learn any card sleights that he excels at, unfortunately no one took up the offer…

Moira then updated members about the Xmas party at the Drum and Monkey, members were sorry to hear that the cost of meals had increased from £21 to £28 due to inflation, energy cost and staff wages no surprise there..

Half time, members retire to the tearoom and remained there where a bit of mentoring and chat lots of chat took place also a successful raffle was completed…..

NEWS FLASH

CLOSE UP COMPETITION POSTPONED!!

We have decided to change the date of the close up competition and next week will be Sucker punch night.

Tricks with gags, sucker effects and comedy.

We will hold the close up comp at a later date.

Members are more than welcome to comment or correct anything I got wrong, English especially commas are not my forte so make allowances plz…

Sucker punch night   23rd Nov 22

Sucker Punch night 23/11/22

Sucker Punch night opened with 15 members present later to be joined 4 others….same attendance as last week…

President Denis open the evening with the sad news that he will be standing down as President siting various personal and private business reasons…

I have be a member of the SCA for well over 30 years and in that time there have been many Presidents and I have to say Denis is up there with the best of them and I, like every member is sorry to see him stand down and wish him well in the future…

After being proposed by Mike Archibald vice-president Mike Nowak was elected our new President…

New President Mike’s first job was to deputise for Ewan Callisson who had to call off siting…. I haven’t a clue they tell me nothing.

Scotland’s own barber to the stars Jim K got Cons and Scams going with a measuring /observation challenge using a pint beer glass, he then performed a nice 3 card monte routine I’ve seen him do many times and I still find it entertaining…

Host Mike N filling in between the stars did a couple of things including the beer glass a twisted hand/arm illusion.

Motherwell’s own Mike Archibald was on next, Mike explained how during the covid pandemic he occupied his time building a flea circus, as he had run out of fleas or maybe the fleas had run out on him he went on to talk about the enjoyment and fulfilment he got working out and building the circus. The tricks a common-or-garden flea might like to perform in the circus included a Tightrope, Trapeze, Roundabout/Carousel and probably other things I never picked up, the whole constructing looked the part and it was an enjoyable presentation by Mike, looking forward to seeing it in operation with the fleas taking an active part….

Sam Allam took to the stage with the intention of performing a card effect but a crucial white dot he needed appeared to have vanished, he proceeded with an effect using a Yale type key Batman and a phone app…nice

The one and only thank god Gerry Mac performed 3 yes only 3 packet tricks his first trick called Imagine is a particular favourite of mine, Gerry was excellent as usual with a nice touch of humour as usual….

Host Mike filled in with a coin glass balance challenge

John Rossi, Tommy Cooper’s Italian son he didn’t know much about, think it was a wartime romance say no more, continued the family tradition with a cod type 3 Aces routine then the Shawn Farquhar book test both excellent…

Host Mike next fill in was a balloon over a lit candle challenge… methinks he’s just showing off….

Rosalind’s dad Stuart Chalmers with one of his too rare performances did a card sandwich type effect….nice

Comment of the night for me was JKs… SuperSex

You had to be there to see it…

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