Life on the Royal Road

card1.jpgDo you remember that I expressed a recent determination to take up magic? My relative silence on the topic of late might have conveyed the impression that it had fallen, predictably and with an audible clang, by the wayside. Not so, my little chickadees. In fact, such has been my determination of late that the blog has been left behind, rather.

Things are definitely improving. I find myself nicely immersed in an amusing little world at the moment. TalkMagic is one of my favourite websites just now – a place (if we believe what we’re told) for magicians to chat. And chat we do. Or rather, they do, and I listen, piping up only occasionally.

The reason I have not been able to contribute much is that it isn’t always clear what’s being talked about. Magicians have a way of obscuring any reference to their techniques in order that they are impenetrable to the layman (that’s you lot). It makes the discourse look a bit unsalubrious, all this talk about c****** p*** not to mention frequent references to ‘bottom dealing’. But still we persist.

The other day, I was preparing for my viva. That has been and gone, by the way, and I have just received a conveniently itemised list of all the changes I need to make in order that it might one day pass muster. But to return to day of preparation, there was just time (in between frenzied searching for academic references) to perfect the ‘Oil and Water’ routine, a classic of close-up magic re-interpreted by Mr Derren Brown.

When Mrs H came home, I was eager to perform it, and duly arranged the set-up, and performed the first phase. To spare you the detail, the cards were made to rearrange themselves under her hands. Now, we all know Mrs H as a woman of the world, but would she have the emotional resilience to withstand my foolhardy disregard for the physical laws that comprise the very fabric of our reality? I imagined she would probably need a glass of water and a sit down before the performance continued.

I have been chastised in the past for describing Mrs H in terms that incorporate bovine comparisons. Let me be clear: there is nothing derogatory in my use of the term ‘cow-like’ to describe Mrs H’s calm, somewhat bemused demeanour in response to my magical efforts. There would be no need for the smelling salts after all. She had the look of one who thinks they ought to be surprised, but cannot quite fathom why.

‘But you’ve not done anything’, said she.

I explained what I’d done.

‘But I saw you do it’.

She is a sweet thing, really. She’d caught me in a certain sleight of hand, and had presumed that I had deliberately made it detectable as part of the trick. This little foible of Mrs H is, of course, rather endearing, but it makes her a rather unsuitable audient for whom to practise the dark arts.

My struggles continue elsewhere. I’ve been practising a nice card relocation to a couple of my colleagues, and they appeared moderately baffled (although both admitted to seeing the c****** p*** as I did it). A further demonstration involved memorising an entire pack of cards, the response to which was ‘yes, my maths teacher could do that, only quicker’. Curses. Still, I followed it up with a Double Thought Projection (great use of the D/L) with a nifty Do As I Do (which depends on a mere b***** g*****) bringing up the rear.

I won’t bore you with anything more, largely because that’s the lot, to date. I’m delighted to be ambling happily down the Royal Road to thaumaturgy, and will keep you updated as best I can.

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2 Comments on “Life on the Royal Road”

  1. Ross Says:

    Doug, in this thread, have you censored swear words? I’ve a vague idea what p*** might be, but I’ve been desperately trying to think of a rude seven-letter word beginning with c.

  2. Wee Gorbals Says:

    The cow it is of bovine ilk,
    One end is moo, the other milk.

    Ogden Nash


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