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Archive for July 1st, 2021

After my last post, ‘Then and now…and a fart machine’ I received some requests to tell the story of how Tony Eng fooled me with dog poop.

Writing this sort of story is difficult because more often than not ‘magic’ happens in the moment of surprise. Without that surprise the magic is anti-climatic and now, dear reader you already know the surprise.

It ends with dog poop.

Thirty years ago I walked into Tony Eng’s Trick and Joke shop on Vancouver Island. There were a few people milling about and after a few moments Tony tells me he will demonstrate one more effect and then we will go to lunch.

Tony brought out a ceramic bowl and a ball and started performing. The ball would vanish from under the bowl only to reappear moments later. Sometimes it would change color, sometimes size. Everything he was doing was standard magicians flair. He performed in mesmerizing style which was always a pleasure to watch, his performances were flawless, brilliant and most importantly entertaining.

“Brian” he says, “I’m going to lift the bowl on the count of three, when I do you reach in as fast as you can and grab the ball.” He would count, I would tense up, “One…two…(I’m ready to pounce) and hey nice weather we are having.” The tension breaks and he says “seriously this time, at the count of three…One…to those of you watching….hahaha”. By the time he made it to three I was a tightly wound spring ready to be let loose. This is how a Master crafts his routine. Nothing was going to stop me from grabbing the ball once the bowl was clear. “One…two….three!” The bowl is lifted and I sprang into action. I saw my hands forming to make an upside down cup so I could trap the ball onto the table. I also saw it was not a ball! My brain and hands were already working in unison, fully committed, I heard the laugher and gritted my teeth as my hands taking on a mind of their own, wrapped around the pile of dog poop, now fully exposed.

One….Two….Three…. and my right of passage into the British Columbia magic circle was complete. BTW, I never said if the dog poop was real or fake. You decide.

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