Rick Brown (danwest) Sat 19 Jan 08 17:06
Paul H's thinking is great -- It's been fun watching the evolution of DA. I don't know if this is the Penn and Teller routine -- but this is one of my favoriate P and T things, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UYTmEVFL_NA Thank's for the links to the Jeff McBride and Max Maven stuff. Great fun!
Linda Castellani (castle) Sat 19 Jan 08 19:53
I love Penn and Teller, and oddly enough, I still love them after seeing this, although gopod knows I will never be able to see that, or similar illusions the same way again. [My goodness Regis is tiny.] Thanks also for those links, Richard. I was just watching the videos with Jeff McBride. He is amazing with cards, and his philosophy of magic that he discusses in the second video totally captivated me. At the Magic Castle, there are caricatures on the walls of famous and member magicians; in fact, there was a magician here on the WELL who gave me a pass many years ago - I believe his login was <howardjr> and I don't know if he's still around, but he got quite a kick out of the fact that his caricature was in the little booth where the valet parking attendant hangs. One of the things I noticed about the carticatures was how few of them were women. It seems like all the notable magicians are men. The assistants are usually women, but not the magician, and I've always wondered why. To refer to the last video on that page, Richard, What knd of magic *does* arouse you now?
Linda Castellani (castle) Sun 20 Jan 08 14:11
I was going to post one other thing about the Jeff McBride video. Several years ago, I saw a show on TV called Learned Pigs and Fireproof Women, which I guess came from a book by Ricky Jay with the same name. It's been so long, though, since I saw that, I can't recall exactly what he did that impressed me so much, although I do recall that one trick had something to do with a watermelon. There was one segment of that show that had to do with not being able to budge someone no matter how hard you try, and I've also seen David Blaine do that on his television show, and I am very curious about this because it doesn't seem that it could be an illusion. Either you can push someone or you can't. I seem to recall that in both instances, the person was able to be pushed at first, but later they couldn't. What's your take on that particular trick, Richard?
It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Sun 20 Jan 08 17:41
The ricky Jay trick is when he peirces the skin of a watermelon with a playing card. Demonstrated in his very rare book CARDS AS WEAPONS (which I happen to own a copy of!) The pushing hands thing I have seen demonstrated as part of aikido (where you can not move the guy's arms
Linda Castellani (castle) Sun 20 Jan 08 21:06
<scribbled by castle Sun 20 Jan 08 21:06>
Linda Castellani (castle) Sun 20 Jan 08 21:27
I remember that he pierced the skin of the watermelon, but it just seemed like there must have been more to it! Although, maybe not. Maybe just sticking it into the watermelon was the point. Here's an episode of Mythbusters on which Ricky Jay appears, throwing cards: http://www.metacafe.com/watch/458503/ricky_jay_on_mythbusters/ As for the other trick, it wasn't just pushing the hands or trying to move the arms, it was trying to move the entire body. The people appeared to be immoveable, although I suppose someone strong enough could come and pick them up.
Lisa Harris (lrph) Mon 21 Jan 08 05:52
My Tae Kwon Do Master can do the pushing thing. I was one of 50 people trying to push him over, but he didn't budge. I know there must be a logical way David Blane can do all those weird tricks - the one when the playing card ends up inside the plate glass window is the one that always gets me.
Richard Wiseman (r-wiseman) Mon 21 Jan 08 07:37
hi there what kind of magic excites me now? Mainly anything that is really well done. You can just tell when a performer has done an item lots of times, and just knows exactly what he or she is about. As the magician Eugene Burger puts it, there is no 'wobble'. So, rather than liking an genre, I just like stuff that is wobble free. I am not a fan of magic on TV, so I guess live is important to me. And I am huge fan of the Blue Man Group - I have seen their show many times and I love the energy there. Penn and Teller are great. Very thoughtful. I met up with them when I was vegas last year because we have some common interests, and they were very kind with their hospitality. Re the levitation, my understanding is that it is physics. If you search for The Little Georgia Magnet, you will see that the act has been around for a very long time! best r
Linda Castellani (castle) Mon 21 Jan 08 15:38
I guess so! Here's an article written in 1895: http://www.nardis.com/~twchan/mag.html
Linda Castellani (castle) Tue 22 Jan 08 15:57
Richard, as our discussion here is winding down, did we cover everything that you would have liked to talk about? More magic? More jokes? More luck? And please also let us know what's on the horizon for you so that we can make sure to keep our eyes out for any upcoming events, studies, books, TV shows, interviews, etc.
Cynthia Dyer-Bennet (cdb) Wed 23 Jan 08 09:13
I'm sorry to interrupt, but I wanted to note that we've launched a new author interview here in Inkwell.vue. This doesn't mean, however, that this conversation must end. The topic will remain open and available for further comments indefinitely and we welcome continued discussion. However, I know that you're a busy man, Richard, and we appreciate the time you've been able to give to your Inkwell interview over the past couple weeks. If you must move on to whatever's next on your to-do list, I thank you, and I hope you'll be able to find the time to give us answers to Linda's last questions above. Also, thank you, Linda, for overseeing this dicussion. It's been great having you here!
Richard Wiseman (r-wiseman) Wed 23 Jan 08 15:27
hi Thanks for having me. It's been fun. Re the next few projects, I am doing a big interactive experiment on laughter with the South Bank in London, then the dancing in the dark event with the Science Museum, then up to Edinburgh for their science festival and a quirky experiment on stereotypes, then over to Spain to launch the Spanish language version of Quirkology. In terms of US activity, I will be over in Vegas at TAM, so if anyone is going, please come and say hello. Anyway, nice chatting to you all. Have a good time in the other conversations best richard
Rick Brown (danwest) Wed 23 Jan 08 19:12
Have fun at TAM. I wish I could go this year!
Linda Castellani (castle) Tue 4 Mar 08 15:43
A new experiment to participate in: Hi Thanks for your continued interested in our work. We have two new online experiments on the quirkology site and need lots of people to participate, so I hope that you will join in. The Name Experiment is being carried out with the Edinburgh Science Festival and looks at the influence of people9s first name on their lives. The Laughter Experiment is being carried out with The Hayward Gallery and examines contagious laughter. Both of them are on the quirkology homepage at www.quirkology.com. For those of you in the UK, March is also a busy time for talks. I am speaking about . .the psychology of humour and The Laughter Experiment at The Hayward Gallery (11 March, 7pm, Southbank, London) .on Quirkology at the Cambridge Science Festival (18 March, 8pm, Babbage Lecture Theatre, Cambridge University) .on Quirkology and The Name Experiment at the Edinburgh Science Festival (25 March, 6pm, Reid Concert Hall). If you do come along, please come and say hello. Best wishes Richard www.richardwiseman.com www.quirkology.com
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