Saturday, July 14, 2007

Busker du Jour

street performer, originally uploaded by Alkiol.

at the Santa Monica 3rd Street Promanade

Shawn & Denise Wedding Part II

I’ve been so caught up in working and unpacking that I forgot to finish up the Grand Canyon story. Denise looked beautiful. Both she and Shawn shared the warm glow of a couple in love. Polly was enlisted to do Denise’s hair. Toni (Denise’s best friend) was relieved that she didn’t have to do it and Polly was happy to lend a hand where it’s needed. She looked very pretty. We shot some fun candid video interviews while she was getting ready. She told the story of how she and Shawn met, a charming story, you’ll have to wait for the edited version to see and hear that story.

I really like Denise. Warm, friendly, calm, centered with an smile that warms the heart.

The wedding was unique to say the least. I never heard of anyone getting married on the edge of the Grand Canyon, and here I was watching my best friend get married while I captured the celebration on high definition video.

That’s weird, while I was writing this post. . . Shawn Greer calls me on the phone. We relived the day talking about how perfect a day it was. Blue skies and sunny, not to hot, not to cool. The attire was Hawaiian casual, nice, as it was on the freaking edge of the Grand Canyon. I asked him all about their week long honeymoon in Maui. They had a great time. What a nice couple. I had never met Denise before, but felt like we had been friends for a long time. Shawn has been raving about her for the three years that they’ve known each other. They both seem very much in love and excited to be embarking on a life together.

What can I say, Shawn has been my best friend for a quarter century. We’ve seen the best of times and the worst of times together. I’m happy for him and think he deserves much happiness. Congrats!

Friday, July 13, 2007

De Kolta

DeKolta, originally uploaded by stuartjudah.

Buatier De Kolta (né Joseph Buatier, 1845 – 1903) was a French magician who successfully performed throughout the 1870s and 1880s in England and America. De Kolta was a contemporary of fellow French magician Jean Eugène Robert-Houdin. Many of De Kolta's illusions, such as multiplying billiard balls, the expanding die and the vanishing bird cage, are still performed by magicians today.

De Kolta is famous for his De Kolta Chair or Vanishing Lady illusion. A woman seated in a chair, covered by a large cloth would appear to vanish before an audience. Present-day magician David Copperfield has adapted this illusion in his own performances. De Kolta is the subject of the book Buatier de Kolta: Genius of Illusion by Peter Warlock.

Klosterman Collection Coffee Table book

Just ordered mine today from Salon de Magie.Com

Salon de Magie

By Ken Klosterman, with Gabe Fajuri

After over 30 years of collecting, Ken Klosterman offers a rare look into what has made his collection, The Salon de Magie, a legend within the inner circles of magic and collecting.

Housed 83 feet beneath the surface of the Earth in an abandoned mine, the Salon de Magie is home to some of the finest pieces in the history of magic. Robert-Houdin, Hofzinser, Herrmann, Kellar, Houdini, Germain, and dozens more of the greatest magicians in history await you in this new book from the Salon de Magie.

Read the biographies of the major collectors in history and how parts of their collections came to reside in the Salon de Magie. Then, take a virtual tour of the museum, with detailed histories of over 100 of the finest pieces in the collection. Each book also comes with a DVD containing an interview with Ken Klosterman and a video tour of the Salon de Magie.

The standard edition will be limited to 450 copies, each hardbound in imitation leather with 400 pages and 286 photographs, most in full color.

The Collector's Edition will be limited to 50 copies, each hand bound in fine leather with gilding on the cover and page edges. Imbedded in the cover is Ken's magic token, re-minted in solid silver. Finally, each copy will be signed and numbered by Ken and the purchaser's name will be gilded on the cover of his or her copy.


, originally uploaded by stuartjudah.

, originally uploaded by stuartjudah.

, originally uploaded by stuartjudah.

, originally uploaded by stuartjudah.

Loving the new house

Our bedroom is 25' x 25'ft. French doors open out to the bricked patio. Polly has created a paradise of plants, cactus and succulents. The patio extends to the back yard where we pick fresh off the tree, apples, figs and limes. I started the day with a morning cigar out back. We're still getting settled and starting to hang some of the many pieces of framed art that we have.

At the last house, my old "magic shop" neon sign hung in the garage. I decided to call the owner of The Magic Apple Magic Shop on Ventura and see if he wanted to hang it in his window. He did, so I dropped it off this afternoon. It shined 20 hours a day for a decade in Cincinnati and another couple of years at Seattle Magic. It was designed and built to hang in a magic shop window, now after a few years of retirement it can again fulfill its purpose.

Work has been great. Had a nice chat with some NLP Practitioners. We discussed the power of NLP as it relates to our work. I demonstrated both the 3 and the Zingone Mental problems, both succeeded as I intended. I guess I'm liking working 6 nights a week. It's a short day, I'm there for 4 hours and probably only perform 3 of that. I still get to work in 10 minutes leaving the house at 5:30PM. Not many people in LA can say that! I love my job, but I love coming home even more. Polly greets me at the door with a kiss and say's "Welcome home".

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

everyday's fortune, originally uploaded by aNNa Munandar.

From a penpal, originally uploaded by ablotial.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007


Tommorrow Is Forever, originally uploaded by The Real Ferg.

Another great day

Vaclav picked me up this afternoon. We went to Santa Monica City Hall to get him a street performing license. It was a beautiful day at the beach. It would have been nice to take a walk, but we wanted to beat any traffic this Monday afternoon might hack up on the 405.

More unpacking, more hugging and kissing, rinse and repeat. (with Polly. . . not Vaclav)

Tonight at work I took some strange pleasure in pointing out and confronting rudeness at every turn. I sounded like a jerk and alienated my audience, but in the end I got their money. I was saying stuff like, "What could you possibly be thinking!? Help me out here, what reality do you operate in, where it might be appropriate for you to discuss your theories about how you think the trick is done WHILE I'M DOING IT. . . 3 FEET AWAY FROM YOU, I can hear you, I standing right here!"

But, that's the nice thing about my job. . . I can do it any way I see fit.

The crowds in general are ignorant of any common sense etiquette. Perhaps it's my job to, in a nice way, to somehow convey what my expectations are to the crowds. I've been experimenting with this, to surprising positive results. Tell'em what you want them to do and it easier for them to do that. . . even if it's as something as mundane as reacting. I shit you not! I asked them to do that tonight. . . getting very real for a moment, I told them of my frustration, night after night working for this (I give the audience a blank stare). I ask them, if they see something they like to clap, or smile, or nod, or any outward indication that I might receive as them enjoying themselves. And, guess what!? They did it! And not in a fake or overdone way, just what I asked for. I was better for me and maybe they learned something about what is expected of a audience member of a live performance.

Hell, I'm just making it up as I go, night after night. I learn a little bit about myself in each performance and I hope, as I look into the blank, vacant stares of the onlookers that I am am just as puzzled looking at them as they are of me. What a weird world.

Monday, July 09, 2007

I love my life

Between working 6 nights a week from 6-10PM at the Universal City Walk and unpacking lots of boxes, I got to say, it’s nice to be me. Polly and I took an adventure to Santa Monica this afternoon. We went and saw a screening of the movie, “The Kid”. As a huge Chaplin fan, I never pass up an opportunity to see silent films on the big screen. Accompannied by a live pianist, the movie was peceeded by a couple of shorts: a Buster Keaton talkie and a Harold Lloyd silent. We walked Montana Avenue, hand in hand. Sunglasses and a cigar as we window shopped the many interesting upscale stores.