Archive for November, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

Posted in Uncategorized on November 24, 2010 by hocuspoc

So here I sit as I do every Thanksgiving Eve, reflecting on all that I have to be thankful for in my life. First and most importantly, my incredible wife, Betty, who supports my every endeavor and project with the utmost enthusiasm and who loves me unconditionally. I can truly say that I could not have done all I have without her. For my four children: Renee, Aimee, Cole, and Max. I am so proud of them all and a father couldn’t ask for better kids than I have. I am especially excited and thankful for my new grandchild that is on the way . I’m thankful for good health, both my family’s and mine. I’m thankful for my good friends, those I have been blessed to meet and will continue to meet in the coming years. I’m also thankful for another  year doing what I love to do the most in life. And, of course, I’m thankful for all of you, who take time to read this blog week after week and support Hocus Pocus as much as you have.

Tomorrow, as every year, I’ll celebrate with my family at my mother in-law’s house for our traditional family Thanksgiving celebration. My mother in law cooks a mean turkey. There will be plenty of food, homemade desserts and as always, lots of leftovers for those great next day turkey sandwiches “Yum.” Friday will be the official holiday shopping kickoff, and you can bet we’ll be here. Personally, I’ll begin my  day here at about 5:30 AM for all those early bird holiday shoppers.

So, as I wrap this up, it’s a perfect winter day here in Fresno, California. It’s a cold 34 degrees outside, and we’re all nice and comfortable here inside the offices and warehouse. As I reflect back on all that I’m thankful for, I’m reminded that I shouldn’t just do it one day per year; but it’s much more important to recognize it every single day. I have a pretty good life and wouldn’t change a thing.

So between that second helping of turkey and gravy count your blessings and all you have to be thankful for, I know I will. From all of us here at Hocus Pocus: Betty, Mike, Jan, Karen, Debbie, and the rest of the gang, we wish you the very best of Thanksgivings!

Until next time,

Paul

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International Week at Hocus Pocus!

Posted in Uncategorized on November 19, 2010 by hocuspoc

This was a week for international visitors!

First, we had Titanas visit us all the way from Greece! It was so thrilling to meet a magician whose work I have long admired. I was honored that of all the places he could visit while on his first trip to the US, he wanted to come to Hocus Pocus first! We toured the showroom, he videoed his favorites, and once again, it was so gratifying to be able to share my enthusiasms (the Private Estate Collection) with someone who appreciates it all as much as I do. Thank you Titanas for visiting! Thank you Kathy Carini of Murphy’s Magic for being tour guide!

Paul and Titanas in the Hocus Pocus showroom

No more Spam! No more Pop Tarts! Our friends, Robert and Deborah Clark from Tricks Magic Shop in Auckland, New Zealand visited us this week also. The Clarks were on the cruise that lost power in the ocean and they told us how the magicians all rallied (as only magicians can) and that they had a great time in spite of all the hardships that faced them.

Deborah & Robert Clark with Paul

The Clarks came with a suitcase full of magic to trade with me! And what was in this suitcase, you ask? A vintage, original Davenport Len Insull ventriloquist figure. This ventriloquist figure has been cause for a lot of comments since he arrived yesterday; the UPS deliveryman finds him a bit scary and won’t go near him and another un-named person thinks he looks like a Hobbit (we know the Shire is in New Zealand so that sort of makes sense), but to me he is beautiful and he will forever sit in a place of honor in the Hocus Pocus showroom.

Davenport Len Insull ventriloquist figure

 The day ended with all of us, Betty and I, Deborah and Robert Clark, Titanas, Kathy Carini and Tim Mannix enjoying dinner together. The restaurant was out of spam so we settle on Italian food.

Kathy Carini, Robert Clark, Titanas, Tim Mannix, Deborah Clark, Betty, Paul

 

I’m very excited to announce a NEW, EXCLUSIVE product. Can’t share with you what it is yet, but the announcement and release will be Tuesday, November 23 at 5pm! We will have a Members Only special offer associated with this new item; so if you aren’t already a member, now is the time to sign up!

Lastly, I would like to wish everyone a very special Thanksgiving. I will be spending the day with my family, probably indulging in way too much eating, and giving thanks for all that I have in my life.  

Until next time,

Paul

A Whirlwind Week!

Posted in Uncategorized on November 12, 2010 by hocuspoc

I know I start so many of my blogs saying, “This has been a great week”, but really, this week has been so great.

We have received hundreds of new Private Estate items this week, which, as you all know, is my passion. My good friends, Tim Mannix and Steve Dick, were both here helping me to unpack, catalog, write copy, and photograph these new acquisitions for the website. It’s Friday afternoon and we are still not finished, but what has gone on the website this week has been just so exciting. We squealed with delight (seriously…absolute delight) when we opened one random box and there it was…a Collector’s Workshop Book of Spells. The Book of Spells is so rare, I’ve only ever seen one once before in my lifetime, and this one is signed by both Nick Ruggiero and Rich Block! It almost pains me to know that it will only be here for a short time. We have added about 25 items every day and half of them sell before the next day begins.

As much as I love the Private Estate vintage and antique items, this was not even the best part of the week.

Another high point of this great week was yesterday when Mike Wilson, Mark and Nani’s son, drove up to Fresno from Los Angeles to deliver a new shipment of 50th Anniversary Allakazam Wands. It was really nice of Mike to do this and I really appreciated it, but that was only the second best thing to happen during this great week.

The REALLY SPECIAL, GINORMOUS HIGHLIGHT OF THE ENTIRE WEEK, maybe of the ENTIRE FALL of 2010, was the surprise package that Mike brought with him.

Mark and Nani sent me a beautifully framed and matted, original “special offer” advertisement display from 1965. Sunbeam sponsored the Magic Land of Allakazam and this special offer: you went to the store where you got a coupon to mail in for a poster of Rebo the Clown. After you received the Rebo poster, which came with a packet of gold stars, you would put a gold star on Rebo’s clown suit every day when you brushed your teeth. At the end of 30 days, when all the gold stars were now pasted to the Rebo poster, you signed it, had your parents sign it certifying that you had, in fact, brushed your teeth and then you mailed it in to receive an autographed picture of the entire “Magic Land of Allakazam” cast plus the “Secrets to 7 Magic Tricks” FREE! I was speechless and even choked up when I saw this framed memorabilia that is so special to me; it is the only one of its kind and it even has the original coupons attached! Now you can understand why I was so thrilled to receive this, so overwhelmed to be the recipient of Mark and Nani’s generosity and thoughtfulness. Thank you to my very dear and special friends Mark, Nani, Mike, and Greg Wilson.

Life is beautiful.

Until next time,

Paul

AllakaWow!

Posted in Uncategorized on November 4, 2010 by hocuspoc

Yesterday, we received the limited edition 50th Anniversary Allakazam Wands. Wow! I felt just like a kid again holding the exact replica of the very wand used by Mark and Nani on every episode of the Magic Land of Allakazam! In fact, I carried around with me all day long. The staff finally convinced me to put it down and get some work done. It makes the perfect addition right next to the Allakazam Hat! This was a collaboration of the entire Wilson family, including Mark, Nani, Greg and Mike. Each one of them had their hand in the final outcome of this beautiful item. The quality and attention to detail and the custom acrylic case are of the highest caliber and are sure to attract the attention of anyone who sees it. If you were one of the first to pre-order, yours is already on its way to you. If you were considering purchasing one, I cannot recommend it highly enough. Remember, this is a limited edition of only 50, so don’t wait. Just look at these details:

Each 50th Anniversary Allakazam Wand comes to you in its own acrylic display case. Each case is engraved with the Allakazam logo and Mark and Nani Wilson’s signature. Each wand will also be stamped and numbered. Again, only 50 commemorative Allakazam Anniversary Wands will be manufactured, and after that, there will be no more! This is your opportunity to own this historic and exquisite piece. Check it out HERE!

On the home front, our new dog, Buster, has really come into his own around the house. Every night when I come home from work, he and Buddy are both standing at the bay window barking and wagging their tails. This morning, Betty was packing our suitcase for a trip we’ll be taking tomorrow, and Buster figured out how to unzip the different compartments. He still has that puppy curiosity and spirit. Thanks to those of you who also own French Bulldogs and sent me training tips and other valuable information. I much appreciate it.

On the Road Again

Tomorrow, Betty and I will be traveling to the Bay Area to check out a HUGE private collection. If all goes as planned, the entire collection will be consigned to us and I will be bringing back the first car load of rare and hard to find magic props. The person who is consigning the collection to us has been a long time Hocus Pocus friend and collecting magic for more than 40 years! I’m honored that he remembered me when thinking about consigning his magic. I’ll be like a kid in a candy store just going through all the items. Betty will have to contain all my excitement on the trip back. I’ll be back first thing Monday morning and start listing the items on the web site, so stay tuned. So, with that, I’m going to wrap up what I have to do today and head out the door.

Until next time,

Paul