Archive for May, 2006

Start the Saber Dance

Posted in Uncategorized on May 25, 2006 by hocuspoc

If there was a soundtrack that would be playing, it would be the Sabre Dance. This week has been one of the busiest we’ve had in a long time. We’re literally running to keep up! Our good friend, Dan McKeon from Arizona stopped by on Monday and brought with him an entire plate spinning act, complete with plates, tables, and poles! It belonged to a very famous performer who made many appearances on the Ed Sullivan Show and various other TV spots. Dan acquired it shortly before this gentleman’s death and performed it for many years. A few months ago, we were speaking on the phone and he mentioned this to me. I guess I don’t have to tell you the rest of the story; we made a deal, and I now own it. I’ve always wanted one of these. I immediately had Tony set up the tables outside my office, and I’m driving everyone nuts everytime I walk outside and start the plates spinning…


Spin those plates, baby!

The other item Dan has is a Cockatoo Circus, which he’s shipping to me next week as he didn’t have enough room in his car this time around. My son, Max, is of course, very excited about this and has already been searching the Internet learning the best way to train and care for cockatoos. If anyone can do it, I know Max can. I’m looking forward to helping him with this and, who knows, maybe a new career will branch out of this.


Dan McKeon


Divine Time by Jason Palter

In case you haven’t noticed the web site, we’ve had quite an explosion of Hot/New products. One of my favorite new effects is Divine Time from Jason Palter. This is an extremely strong piece of mentalism as well as a time-tested routine as performed by Jason for many years. This is well-worth checking out, believe me!


Snurdley and Samantha Rope Snakes

We’re constantly on the lookout for new and exciting children’s and family effects. One such item that immediately caught my attention was Snurdley and Samantha Rope Snakes. This is a hilarious six-minute routine that combines a cut & restored rope routine with a snake basket effect, and much, much more! The families and kids are going to scream over this one! Definitely check this one out as well on our web site.

Mike is preparing for his trip to Italy from mid-June to mid-July. Being the trooper he is, however, he will still be posting new images and products, even from abroad. His trip includes cities like Naples, Rome, Venice, Milan, Florence, and his father’s home town of Campo Basso. Mike was in Italy, France, and Germany back in 1992, and you can imagine his excitement as he relives the trip and tells us all about these cities he’s going to visit, some for the first time. A lot of travelling and brushing up on his Italian, we know he’ll have a great time as he’s thinking about all of us here at Hocus Pocus. Yeah, right.

Looking forward to a long and much-needed Memorial Day Weekend, relaxing and enjoying my family. Next Tuesday, Cole graduates from high school and Max graduates from junior high school. Hard to believe they’ve grown up so quickly. It seems like just yesterday, I was holding them in my arms. Now they’re growing up to be nice and smart young gentlemen. Enjoy your weekend.

Until next time,

Paul

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Smile! You’re on Candid Camera

Posted in Uncategorized on May 18, 2006 by hocuspoc

Yesterday, Mike surprised us all when he brought his video camera in, and just like Alan Funt Jr., filmed an impromptu walk-through tour of our new location. It turned out so well, we decided to share it with you. Wow! It always looks different when you see it on film! We really did need the bigger space. Let us know what you think after you check it out. If you’d like to take the tour, simply click the picture below:

HOT HOT HOT!

This last week, the temperatures have soared to a whopping 105 degrees! I find myself turning the AC on at about 8:30 AM instead of early in the afternoon. It’s going to be a looooong, hot Summer! The crazy part? They said it’s supposed to rain tonight, tomorrow, Sunday, and Monday! What the heck is going on?! The weather is as up and down as gas prices!

It’s been very busy here at Hocus Pocus with orders flying out the door just as fast as they’re coming in. In fact, we needed to hire an extra employee. Starting Monday, working in shipping and receiving, will be our newest employee, Corina! We’re happy to have someone as courteous and professional as she is.

After the Keith Barry episode aired last Friday, we’ve been selling a TON of X-Ray Hood & Blindfolds, which we were happy to supply Keith for that particular episode. If you’re looking for a foolproof accessory for a publicity stunt, this one is for you!

BUYER BEWARE ALERT!

It’s been brought to our attention that the Mak Magic company has once again ripped off another of our effects. Currently, they are selling a poorly manufactured version of Martin Lewis’ Cardiographic. To set the record straight, we purchased all manufacturing and distributing rights from Martin Lewis for this effect about 10 years ago. Let there be no doubt that Cardiographic was originally created and manufactured by Martin Lewis and as of the purchase date, no one else has the right to manufacture or distribute this effect. This is just one in a long line of products Mak Magic has ripped off from creators such as Wayne Rogers’ Appearing Ladder, Hocus Pocus’ Gravity Box, and Hank Lee’s Wedlock. All these effects and more have been purchased (along with the rights) by Hocus Pocus and other dealers, so please buy the originals and support the creators.

I just got off the phone with Robert Baxt, who just returned from San Francisco with Carl Ballantine who was honored with a lifetime achievement award in the field of magic and comedy. Congratulations to Carl, who deserves all the accolades.

As I’m writing this, the skies are becoming overcast, so the weatherman’s predictions of rain must be coming true. Have a safe and rest-filled weekend.

Until next time,

Paul

A Week of Magic

Posted in Uncategorized on May 12, 2006 by hocuspoc


Keith Barry

We started off this week with the long-anticipated David Blaine special, and if you’ve been looking at our Hot/New section of the web site, we’ve featured many new products that were featured on that special as well as the Paul Harris Prime Time product line. Every one of these products is truly special and quite a value at the price. If you haven’t already done so, do yourself a favor and check out the video demos of these products. Don’t forget to watch Keith Barry tonight at 8:00 PM on CBS. Check your local listings for more details.


Ray Lum

We had a surprise visit from our good friend Ray Lum and his friend Timothy James. They’re preparing for their upcoming tour, “House of Wonders, Volume 1” starting July 1st in the Campbell, California. They’ve made several visits in preparation to taking their show on the road. If any of you know Ray as well as we do, you know how much of a perfectionist he is. Also, while Ray was here, he presented Hocus Pocus with a welcome-to-our-new-home gift of a beautiful 8-sheet Carter the Great Cheating the Gallows poster, professionally mounted on linen. Ray knows that I’ve wanted this poster for a long time, and my jaws hit the floor the first time I saw it. We had a perfect spot right behind Mike’s desk, where it resides:


Cheating the Gallows, Carter the Great

Yesterday was my son Max’s 14th birthday, and for months, and for months he’s been asking for an X-Box 360. For any of you who have looked for one of these, you know it’s easier said than done. Betty looked for weeks to no avail, and Max was so convinced he was going to get one of these, we decided to fool him a bit. It wasn’t until the day before his birthday that Betty finally found one left at a local store! Next, it was time to hide it in the house, but we had to make sure to hide it well, because Max goes on secret missions looking for his gifts. To really fake him out, Betty wrote a note where it was hidden in the house and wrapped it up in a small box. You should have seen the look on his face when she brought out his smaller-than-expected gift. He opened it up and immediately began searching throughout the entire house on a mock scavenger hunt. Needless to say he was thrilled and we never heard a peep or saw him again for hours. If only life was that simple again.

Believe it or not, we went from Winter right to Summer and skipped Spring entirely! The weather here has been in the 90s and yesterday we broke a record of 98 degrees for this time of year. The air conditioning units are getting a workout both here and at home. As we near the end of this month, graduation is approaching. Max will be graduating junior high school and my eldest son, Cole will be graduating high school and preparing himself for the big move to college in Moraga, California at St. Mary’s.

Just got off the phone with Dexter, and they’re wrapping up the final shoot for the upcoming Criss Angel Mindfreak season, starting Wednesday, May 31.

So there you have it — lots of magic, lots of sunshine, and lots of excitement. Don’t forget to spend time with your family and enjoy your weekend!

Until next time,

Paul

What a Week It’s Been!

Posted in Uncategorized on May 5, 2006 by hocuspoc

Well, we’re finally all the way moved into the new building and everything is put away and organized and I must say, it looks outstanding. We’d like to invite any of you, whether you are local or out of town to please stop by any time! We’d love to see you and show you around the new place. Again, I want to thank everyone who sent in their 8″ X 10″ photos. We received over 2 dozen within the last week, and we’re putting them up as fast as they’re coming in! It’s exciting to see the mail every day as we get a chance to finally put the pictures to the names. Keep sending them our way!

If you’re an online member, be watching your email very soon as you’ll be receiving a special members-only announcement along with a free gift. It’s just our way of saying thanks for all your support!

The hot new 3rd Degree Burn finally arrived today. We shipped over 250 of them over the morning and afternoon and still have plenty to fill any new orders. If you want a totally impromptu, anytime, anywhere effect, this is a must-have. You’ll never leave home without this precision-made gimmick, and it’s and effect you’re audience won’t forget. If you don’t believe me, check out the online video!

In other news, we just received a brand new product imported from Italy called the Devil’s Candelabra! If you’re a mentalist or into Bizarre Magick, this is a great utility prop that doesn’t look like a prop at all! Extremely well-made and an exceptional value for the price, you won’t be without this. There is a limited supply of these, and when they’re gone, we don’t know whether we’ll be able to get any more, so order yours today!

Another new product from Mephisto Magic Studios is The Shining, a great effect utilizing a real Tarot deck and would be perfect used in conjunction with any of the effects above! There are more new products that Mike has added, so go over to the Hot/New section to see them.

Turtle Haven

My son, Max, decided that he wanted to buy a baby red ear slider turtle. You might remember these as a kid; they’re the tiny ones that used to be sold everywhere. Well guess what? They’re not anymore! After several weeks of searching relentlessly, we found only one pet shop in the entire city that still sells them. As part of the yard work he did, I promised to buy him one. Ah, but it’s never that simple, is it? There’s the bowl, the food, and the filter. As soon as we got to the pet store, the owner informed us that we really should have two to keep the other one company. To make a long story short, we have four!!! So that makes 15 tropical fish, 4 turtles, 10 Coi in the Coi pond, 2 dogs, and a partridge in a pear tree. Just kidding. Maybe I should rename Max Dr. Doolittle!

And before I close, I must mention the passing of the great Billy McComb. Not only was Billy one of the best performers I’ve ever seen, he was also one of the nicest people you could ever meet. No matter who you were or where you were, you were never a stranger to Billy. The magic world will, of course, never be the same.

Hoping the weather here stays cool and sunny this weekend because I have lots to do. Enjoy your weekend and your family.

Until next time,

Paul