Magical Investment

Those who know me know that i have spent a fair amount of money on cards, but not for magic tricks, but for Magic: The Gathering. So when I decided to invest in a good set of cards, the thought of getting 52 cards for less than five dollars is rather unheard of for me.

At this point, I feel like I have learned (or are in the process of learning) enough tricks that learning more would get in the way of the tricks I was already practicing. And so this week i decided to take a different route.

Videos are great, but they are not all that the internet has to offer. One thing you can do on the internet is just ask questions to the void. Better yet, chances are, as long as your question isn’t too obscure, someone has already asked it, so that’s what I consulted to find the best deck of cards for card tricks.

I found an informative response by Bhavesh Aggarwal on Quora.com.

Bhavesh is a hobby close up magician, and in his answer suggested the Bicycle Rider Back Index Playing Cards for a myriad of reasons.

  1. The “air cushion finish” makes the cards glide nicely.
  2. “they’re tacky enough to do various sleights and otherwise impressive moves like a one handed cut without lack of traction destroying the alignment of your card stack(s)”
  3.  They are CHEAP. If you do magic lots, or do tricks where you sign a card, you will be going through plenty of decks, so economic options are important.

I have ordered the recommended cards and will write a follow-up post with my own opinion of the cards after they arrive.

See you next time!

Megan Moore: Fab and Findable

This week we were tasked with sleuthing a partner to discover what information is available to the general populace.

As I am friends with my sleuthing partner Megan, I decided to give myself some stipulations to attempt to produce as genuine a result as possible.

  1. I used incognito mode so that none of my shared social media platforms would not provide me with any insider information.
  2. I gave myself a time limit of 30 minutes.
  3. Any information I was to include in this blog post had to come from my sleuthing.

Facebook was the first place I looked, and at first it looked as though Megan’s privacy settings were going to stop me from finding anything, but some deep searching revealed that she was using an alias on Facebook. I found this alias by searching for posts that included Megan’s name, and eventually I found one posted by a Megan Lindsay (she looked very familiar).

 

After discovering Megan’s Facebook I was able to deduce a few things, such as her age, her 2018 move, her vacation last year to the Bahamas, and a photo that showed me her ax-throwing proficiency (remind me not to anger her).

After getting all that I could from Facebook, I decided to try twitter. Megan’s twitter can be found here. Her twitter did not seem to contain anything I could use maliciously, but it did contain this confident tweet.

After exhausting social avenues (and with only ten minutes left on the clock) i decided to see what I could find from more professional sources.

In my few remaining minutes I found out many wonderful things about Megan. She has a degree in Biological Science (which she started working on in 2010). She is also employed right here at the University of Regina through the EYES program.

Overall, Megan is very present online, but is present in good ways that should help her pursue whatever avenues she desires.

This exercise was very interesting as it gave me a chance to see what kinds of things might be visible to people who I don’t know. Digital citizenship is increasingly important because of what is out there about you and those around you.

Much to think about…

 

A Magical Reflection

Over the last two and a half months, I have been practicing a skill I never thought I would have time for, and in a way I never assumed I would. Using the internet to add poorly executed magic tricks every week to a small repertoire was perhaps not the wisest idea in learning magic.

 

Patience is a virtue, but by consulting videos and walkthroughs, i have come to expect more from myself. So this week, rather than search out a new trick, i have sought out some advice. And I found it here.

 

I have always been a fan of Penn and Teller (I’m still salty about missing them in Vegas), but they did more than entertain me today. They could very well be my biggest motivator in choosing magic as a pursuit for this project.

If you haven’t seen them perform, check out this trick, one of my favorites.

I think my biggest take away from learning things on the internet was not something you can learn on the internet, oddly enough, and i think it extends into the other facets in my life.

Patience.

I need to be more patient with myself. It can be hard to be patient in a world of due dates but that doesn’t make it any less necessary.

 

Lots to think about this week, see you next time.

 

I Can’t Eat Coins Anymore, They Go Right Through Me!

This time, in my journey to become a master magician, I decided to try something a little simpler. Card tricks are cool, but i need a varied repertoire if I am ever to buy a house off of my magic skills. This weeks trick is one of the most famous. Pushing a coin through one’s hand.

To learn this trick, i wanted to search outside of YouTube for my learning tools, and so i stumbled upon slightofhandtricks.com, seemed suitable enough. And though the videos used to learn the tricks were still uploaded to YouTube, the organization of the site made if very pleasant to discover this weeks trick. The page i ended up on was this one.

The hardest part of this trick is finding two coins that look similar enough. In an age of plastic and digital currency, the coins of decent size that i own are often worn to different levels.

I am thinking that soon, rather than simply learning new tricks, i will instead practice a routine, using other performances found on the internet as inspiration.

Lots to think about.

Jonah

Vlog Roll

Part of me wanted to have this blog be just the video, so that it could speak for itself but i guess some context is required. After watching the video back I began to critique myself very harshly, but in doing so, experienced the very kind of self-criticism Wesch and his class experienced. So despite my want to preface this with an apology about rambling or the length of the video, I am instead going to let the video speak for itself. Enjoy.

 

StoryCorps TED Talk

Tricking Kids

This week, I decided to do things a little differently. Previously, my blogs would focus on learning a new trick, commenting in where I learned it from, what i thought of the resource, and a goal for the following week.

However, this week i thought it was about time to try my hand at performing the few tricks I had learned for people who would give me honest criticism. Kids.

I work part-time as a substitute educational assistant for the Regina Public School Board, and so I saw this as the perfect opportunity to try out some of my highly refined illusions. To my surprise, the tricks were met with wonder (when they worked), and for the most part were met with positivity. In one classroom I worked in, performing the simple coin disappearing trick from my first blog served as a reward for getting questions done and done well. One student (who has a tough time with motivation) began showcasing their knowledge in order to get me to perform for them.

This experience has really touched my heart, because, as a future educator, the feeling of helping someone understand and succeed is a core reason as to why I entered the discipline. I wouldn’t have thought that there was a place for magic tricks in a classroom but, because of this learning project I am finding ways to use it.

I am now curious as to what other things this would apply to. What knowledge have we decided is important for students to learn and what have we deemed irrelevant. I am curious to see what other skills students are learning through this project that will also be useful for teaching.

Shorter blog this week, but perhaps my most meaningful one yet.