Vernon, Jennings, and Cervon

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erdnasephile
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Vernon, Jennings, and Cervon

Postby erdnasephile » February 12th, 2017, 6:59 pm

Much has been made about how Vernon would pit Cervon and Jennings against each other in terms of creating magic.

Did Vernon do this primarily to help them both get better, or did he just like to watch the fireworks? Also, did Vernon do that only with Cervon and Jennings or did he do that with his other acolytes as well?

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Vernon, Jennings, and Cervon

Postby Richard Kaufman » February 12th, 2017, 7:28 pm

He hoped that it would ignite creativity in each of them. But it was also a bit sadistic. Vernon was like a father to Jennings, which made the whole thing painful for Larry. It also created a mess with the crediting of some items.
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Max Maven
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Re: Vernon, Jennings, and Cervon

Postby Max Maven » February 12th, 2017, 9:40 pm

On occasion, the Professor would play this on others. I know this from personal experience.

I wouldn't say it was sadistic, Richard, but it was primarily for his own amusement. If and when a good piece of magic came about as a result, that was a fine side product—but not the goal per se.

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Vernon, Jennings, and Cervon

Postby Richard Kaufman » February 12th, 2017, 10:26 pm

I didn't write that sadism was the explicit goal, but it was certainly one of the results.
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Leonard Hevia
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Re: Vernon, Jennings, and Cervon

Postby Leonard Hevia » February 12th, 2017, 11:03 pm

Wouldn't a classic example of this be Jennings' Invisible Palm Aces?

PickaCard
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Re: Vernon, Jennings, and Cervon

Postby PickaCard » February 13th, 2017, 6:42 am

Vernon's personality trait discussed above gives me the impression that he was a very manipulative (no pun intended) person. For those of us who only know him from books, he looks like a wise kind grandfather. However, Based on the above, I don't get the impression he would have made a great friend.

Daniel Z
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Re: Vernon, Jennings, and Cervon

Postby Daniel Z » February 13th, 2017, 10:00 am

As to the question of how he treated his friends. While you might get a better, and fuller answer from biographer David Ben, or those few of Vernon's confidants, like Persi Diaconnis, Max Maven, and Ricky Jay, who are still with us. You won’t get one as pithy as the statement by Persi that ends the film "Dai Vernon: The Spirit of Magic". Persi who as a teen ager, met Vernon and spent some years travelling with him quotes Larry Grey who had, decades before Persi, also lived with Vernon. Purportedly Grey replied to the question of what was it like to know Vernon by saying: “I’d wouldn’t take a million dollars not to have known him, but I’d give a million not to know another one like him”.

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Vernon, Jennings, and Cervon

Postby Richard Kaufman » February 13th, 2017, 10:35 am

Vernon was a good friend, as many will attest. He was sometimes mean to people. He didn't treat his wife and kids very well, either, because he was interested in magic, not them.
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