Archive for March, 2006

Please Stand By

Posted in Uncategorized on March 31, 2006 by hocuspoc

Hey there!

Just a quick note to let everyone know that Paul and the gang are busy overseeing some minor construction and cleaning over at Hocus Pocus’ new location, so he will return to the blog this Monday. Until then, have a fantastic weekend!

Mike

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And So It Goes…

Posted in Uncategorized on March 24, 2006 by hocuspoc

Greetings from the ever-condensing warehouse here at good ol’ Hocus Pocus. The blog is mine once again as Paul has undergone some minor surgery. I spoke to Betty, his wife, last evening, and Paul is doing fine; better than expected as a matter of fact. So, we’re all taking bets as to when his first day back will be. I’m surprised it wasn’t yesterday immediately following the operation!


Channing Pollock 1927-2006

I was shocked, as I’m sure you were, of hearing about the passing of the great Channing Pollock earlier this week. Channing Pollock was legendary. According to most experts, he is probably one of the most influential magicians of the 20th century. He had a fascinating career which emcompassed films and magic. Whenever you see a magician performing a dove production, we know we can thank Channing Pollock for such innovation, as he was the creator of the modern “Dove Act.” His technique with cards was so close to perfection, that very few have been able to accomplish what he did on stage. He will be sorely missed!

Last Tuesday marked the conclusion of the semi-annual Most Embarrassing Moment, a contest I hold on the Mike on the Mic Radio Program on Magic Broadcast. Congratulations go to Magic Chaz from West Virginia who called in with an unbelievable embarrassing moment. It won him a slew of prizes, including the 2 MasterMinds DVDs by Criss Angel and R. Paul Wilson’s new Spectrum Deck we donated! Make sure you listen to the show every Tuesday evening at 8:15 PM PST to find out how you can be a winner, too!

We’re slowly integrating supplies and equipment into our new location, which has been freshly painted and the carpets cleaned! I can’t wait to officially move in with all that new space. We’re also making improvements to our Internet connection as I’ve been talking with some IT companies about having T1 speed at the new place. So if you think we’re fast in putting up the hottest and newest products on the web now, wait until next month! We’ll all be happy and comfortable in Hocus Pocus’ new home!

On the home front, I love my new house! Everything is literally falling into place as the boxes disappear. I’ve donated and gotten rid of a lot of personal items and magic to accommodate the new space, and I couldn’t be happier and more comfortable! The Salvation Army knows me well as I make a donation overy other day or so, and they’re now thinking of making me an honorary member!

So that about does it for this week. I’m sure Paul will be back to his regularly scheduled blog next week.

Until then, have a fantastic well-rested weekend!

Mike

Erin Go Bragh!

Posted in Uncategorized on March 17, 2006 by hocuspoc

It’s time to bring out the corned beef, cabbage, and let the green beer flow! If you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, here’s to you! Our very own Tony Blanco will be celebrating in Fresno’s Fagan’s Irish Pub dressed in a leprechaun performing magic for all! Let’s hope he stays sober…

UPDATE ON HOCUS POCUS’ NEW LOCATION:

The excitement is building here. The offices are slowly being emptied out and transported over to our new facility, but the phones remain. The offices are being painted this weekend, and after that, we’ll start moving full force!

Here’s your way to be a part of the Hocus Pocus Wall of Fame: If you have an 8″ X 10″ photo, autograph it and send it to us. I’ve collected many autographed photos over the years and have never had the space to display them. That is, until now. So send yours to:

Hocus Pocus
2311 E. McKinley Ave.
Fresno, CA. 93703

As many of you know, I’ve told you about my youngest son, Max, who’s beyond car crazy. He’s stuck on cars from the 1960s-1970s and knows everything there is to know about them! This weekend, the AutoRama is coming to town, and Max and I will be first in line tomorrow to experience the thrill of it all! He’ll be in hog heaven as we walk through aisles and aisles of custom cars, each one better than the last. It’s still raining here, even though Monday is the official first day of Spring… It’s a good thing the AutoRama is indoors!

Later this afternoon, Mike and I will be compiling a list of estate and collectible items we came across during this move, so if you are a member, be on the lookout. If not, make sure you sign up to become a member today and get first dibs on some of this great magic!

Until next time,

Paul

Look What I Just Found!

Posted in Uncategorized on March 13, 2006 by hocuspoc

That’s been the standard saying as we’ve been busily packing up our things. We’re finding a lot of stuff in the warehouse we forgot we had. Boxes and boxes of used magic and estate items we purchase that were never listed are being accumulated so you can surely bet that there’ll be a list for members appearing soon.

The interior construction of the offices in the new building are complete. Wednesday, the alarm company will install the alarm and we’re anticipating a new paint job by the end of the week. We’ll start methodically moving into our new location and trucking the inventory over, but we’re going to be very careful how we do it; we want our new location to be as efficient and as work-friendly as possible. Every time we go over, we get excited over what this new mega-space will offer!

Our friend, Robert Baxt, has been busy filming a new pilot for a new television series called “The Jeff Garlin Show.” You may remember Jeff Garlin from HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm” along with Larry David, and alongside Eddie Murphy, he’s just finished a pilot for the new sitcom in Hollywood. The first episode features Robert Baxt as a circus promoter who stages an impromptu audition for Jeff while they’re in line together at a bank. The scene features magic, plate spinning, juggling, contortionists, unicyclists, stilt walkers, and dog acts as Robert orchestrates everyone in the bank into his performance. Also in the bank with Robert is special guest star Wayne Newton, and the shows regular co-stars are Bob Einstein, better known as “Super Dave Osborn,” and Dan Castelleneta, better known as the voice of Homer Simpson. Let’s hope the network picks it up!

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Jeff Garland and Robert Baxt

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Robert Baxt & Dan Castelleneta

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Robert Baxt and Wayne Newton

Saturday night, Betty and I watched our eldest son, Cole, star in the play, “Flowers for Algernon” as one of the main characters. He did a fantastic job and as always, we are very proud of him.

The weather here has been bizarre, to say the least. One minute is glorious sunshine, and the next it’s hailing, which is what it did most of Friday and Saturday. Now, it’s just cold with more rain to come. That’s good news for the folks in the Sierras as they need the skiing business, and the rain always cleans out the air here on the valley floor.

Tonight, my oldest daughter, Renee, is coming up from Santa Barbara to introduce us to her new boyfriend. Am I prepared for this? We’ll see… I’ll be back on Friday with more to report.

Until next time,

Paul

Please Stand By

Posted in Uncategorized on March 10, 2006 by hocuspoc

Just a quick note to let everyone know that Paul and the gang are busy moving things over to Hocus Pocus’ new location, so he will return to Blog Central this Monday.

Until then, have a fantastic weekend!

Mike

Change is Good!

Posted in Uncategorized on March 3, 2006 by hocuspoc

If someone told me over 30 years ago, when I began this business, what it would turn into, I would have shaken my head in disbelief! When I think about all the people I’ve met, place I’ve been, and the friends I’ve made in the world of magic, it’s pretty incredible, to say the least! None of this could have happened if we hadn’t changed with the times. For the past five years especially, there have been many changes within the industry. Hocus Pocus has adapted accordingly to the current trends and needs of our customers. We are able to do this because we’re willing to listen to you and make the necessary changes to do so. Here at Hocus Pocus, it’s more than just selling magic tricks; it’s about building long-term relationships with our customers. The biggest change in our future right now is this big move, and while we may experience one or two technical glitches, we promise to make it as seamless and as smooth a transition as possible. I said it a million times, and I’ll say it a million times more: YOU are the most important part of our business. It is your constant support, dedication, and commitment and that has allowed us to make the necessary changes to our business. As we transition to our new location, it is our goal to provide you with even better service before, during, and after each sale, to excel in our shipping department by making it even faster than it is now, and to make our customer service department better than ever! Change is good.

I invited Mike to stop by the new building with me as we took a look and soaked in the interior of the place. We felt we should share the size and space with you now before it fills up with inventory, equipment, etc. Take a look:


Shots of a portion of our office space


Another view of the office space


Meeting room


One corner of the warehouse


A view from the opposite side of the warehouse


Great view of the outside from the warehouse

Last Friday, we had a visit from one of our favorite customers, Gerardo Parra, who comes to see us every year from his home country of Chile! Normally, he stays two days as he showed up on Friday and planned on leaving Sunday. He decided to stay an additional two days because, in his words, “There is too much to see here!” After loading up his car Monday afternoon, he drove to Los Angeles, where he was to fly home the next day. Believe it or not, he called us later in the day and ordered more stuff for us to send to his hotel room. Gerardo’s a great guy and a highly respected entertainer in his country. We look forward to his visits again in our new home very soon.


Our friend Gerardo Parra visits us from Chile!

Mike showed me a few pictures of his new home, and if you are a fan of reading magic books and watching magic videos and DVDs, take a look at the shots of his new study. How he found space to store all those new books, videos, DVDs, AND his show equipment is beyond me.


Office/study


Office/study with view of where the radio show takes place


The very warm and comfortable living room


The opposite wall of the living room/entertainment wall

Now Mike is in his new place, so for him, change is good, too! As for me, this will be the first weekend without painters, carpenters, electricians, you get my drift, will be in my house. I plan on just taking it easy this weekend. I really do have a good life.

Until next time,

Paul