Lesbian (Gay) Civil Partnership

Discuss the historical aspects of magic, including memories, or favorite stories.

Postby Guest » 04/29/07 11:46 PM

Dear All,

I thought I had performed at every type of private function imagineable; weddings, parties, hen nights, stag nights, garden parties and even a funeral...

But...

Last Saturday I performed at a (Gay) civil partnership 'wedding.' No problem at all. Lovely, lovely people (great guests)...but...

They didn't tell me (that they were gay) when they booked me! (Karen & Toni sounded male/female to me. I shouldn't have assumed... And, I guess, they probably thought that they didn't have to tell me!)

I nearly made a boo-boo when I met (last Sat) the 'bride'...I nearly asked to meet her 'new' husband, but I 'realised' in the nick of time.

It was amazing how I had to change - on the hoof - my patter and tricks. So many changes had to be made. I do a lot of husband/wife effects at weddings that rely on the male/female aspect...

One of my 'lines' is, "Hi there, folks! I've been asked by the bride and groom to entertain you and show you one of the world's best tricks!" Tricky! (By the way, I never say the actual names because I realise that most guests, the hangers-on ones or the youngsters, aren't always too sure of their 'hosts' names. Anyway, that's another story...)

An interesting learning curve! Now I'm going to rehearse and plan some new lines and alternative endings to some of my tricks...

Paul Gordon
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 02:21 AM

Dude. It's the 21st century.
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 02:34 AM

Not in England, it isn't! Certainly not in leafy Sussex by the Sea...(except Brighton)
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 02:42 AM

:rolleyes:
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Postby Kevin Connolly » 04/30/07 06:14 AM

Good post Paul. Glad it worked out for you.
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 06:48 AM

Guess we're gonna start seeing "off" presentations for Hamman's twins routine going mainstream and into print. And the "visitor" plot will get revived as... Oh well. :rolleyes:
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 07:15 AM

What a terrific opportunity to re-examine your own work.

Congrats.

P&L
D
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 08:06 AM

You know what, fellas/ladies...

I've been looking into a lot of effects and patter lines since last Saturday...it IS a very interesting subject...a GOOD exercise for all of us. (In the UK, Gay marriages are quite new.)

Over the years I have altered certain aspects of my act to embrace different cultures as to what does, and doesn't, offend or upset...

...Asian...Muslim...etc., etc.

I used to kiss the bride as I left the gig. I realise that it's not always appropriate for cultural reasons...neither is/are handshakes...touching-hand tricks...'gaze into my eyes' effects...and more. Think RICHARD GERE!

So...with Gay marriages, the same/similar sensitivity needs to be embraced...

A few years ago I marketed a unique twist on 'The Magician's Insurance Policy' trick. My handling offered the ANY CARD aspect, but was best done for men. As a member of The Magic Circle (AIMC) I offered 1500 free copies to members (as an insert to the official magazine) as a gift. Guess what: Two ladies COMPLAINED that it was sexist! (Not one thank-you, either.)

...although I was angry, it DID make me think!...

Anyway...I'm rambling....

Paul
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 08:20 AM

"Guess what: Two ladies COMPLAINED that it was sexist!"

If you hold a door open for a woman, she may complain that you're being sexist.

If you don't hold a door open for a woman, she may complain that you're being discourteous.

Sometimes it's a lose-lose situation.

Dave (who always holds the door open for women and others, who's never had anybody complain about it, but has been told that others doing the same have received complaints)
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 09:43 AM

In my experience getting doors for women (especially car doors, for some reason), getting chairs at dinner; several little touches of chivalry, get more positive reactions than hostile reactions.

Then again, I live in Latin America, where men (in general) aren't very courteous unless they're trying to get laid. The women are becoming powerful, more educated, and more liberal, but are still extremely feminine in certain ways and seem to enjoy being treated with what as I understand it is a heightened respect for women, not some kind of sexist insult.

I also lived in Santa Cruz, California for some time (makes Berkley look like Reagan country, the self-proclaimed lesbian capital of the world), and even there, most women seem to appreciate a confident (key) gentleman. I've had my share of heated debates, there, however...taking the stance that men and women are NOT equal, they are different. Neither gender is *better* or deserves more or less legal rights, but I cannot see the insult in a form of treatment that highlights my respect for femininity whether it's my grandmother or my date that I'm opening a door for. Note that were it not for my dislike of labels, I'd consider myself a feminist, of a sorts.

On the subject at hand, in one of my recent castle trips, a gay couple rounded out my small group of guests. If anything, such a union is probably a fairly fun crowd to work, with, agreed, some changes to patter and routines. Twins is indeed high on the list. Not sure what the proper terms are from party to party, I think it varies. These particular folks both called each other as "my husband".

I usually attempt to get as much detail as I can on the nature of a party and it's guests in order to personalize presentations as much as possible, which would keep me forewarned in a situation like this, although admittedly such a practice would become tedious for anything else than a low-volume of high-end parties.
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 09:46 AM

Paul
Your post shows a lot about how the modern world is changing around us. It certainly can give one pause.
Thanks for the post. I'm glad it worked out for you.

Gord
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 10:26 AM

Thanks Kevin, Gord et all...

Glad you liked the post.

Paul
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 11:02 AM

Male/Female Gay/Straight

What are these. Aren't they just social constructions designed to uphold our harsh patriarchal order? Aren't these roles just labels of societal domination? I've always believed that magic should be a gender neutral zone.

Noah
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 11:22 AM

Gay/Straight may be labels Noah, but it would be naive to assume to think that there are no differences in the way men and women perceive the world.

Knowing that sex affects the way people think, I don't think that it's too much of a stretch to assume that different sexual orientations create different perceptions, also.

I think being aware of as many subtitles in perception as we can and tuning our performances to such enhances our impact on an audience considerably.
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Postby Amos McCormick » 04/30/07 11:25 AM

I say hold the door open just to make 'em mad!

:D
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 11:25 AM

Being from San Francisco, I have not heard this term you use, "gay". What means this? ;)

TREMENDOUS NEWS FLASH: You heard it here first--People are people. :whack:
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 11:48 AM

Male/Female Gay/Straight

What are these. Aren't they just social constructions designed to uphold our harsh patriarchal order? Aren't these roles just labels of societal domination? I've always believed that magic should be a gender neutral zone.

Noah
Noah.
In a perfect world, maybe.
People are different. This difference comes from many factors, gender being the most simple. This difference is not only a physical difference, but mental and emotional.
To assume that gender differences are basically man (Pardon the gender specific term) made is incorrect. It is the way we are.
As for sexual orientation, it does make a difference, especially in the situation Paul described.
But these differences do not have to be negative. They are apart of what makes the world an interesting place.
My wife's best friend is a gay man. When we got married he was her "Maid of honor", a title he relished. It was part of what made our wedding special and I wouldn't want to change it for anything.
I would also like to mention that for at least one member of my family it was a learning experience. He was the first gay man she had ever gotten the chance to know and she grew as a person and changed her conceptions. A good thing, yes?

Gord
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Postby Kevin Connolly » 04/30/07 11:57 AM

Here comes the lock. :whack:
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 12:14 PM

Yes, please... before we get into South Park references and worse :help:
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 01:18 PM

this post is quite nice...

i perform around cleveland and it's suburbs. one of wich is Lakewood, alot of bars, the population being alot of gay/bi patrons. I had to rework alot of presentations on the fly the first time out there, making a few "oops, i hope i didn't insult all of you's". but it was a good time. i get alot of business still from people who were at my first performance that night. it's all about entertainment... Rich
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 01:49 PM

Living in a country where kissing the hand to a lady(stopping at 2 centimetres from it)and holding the door open is still appreciated,I do it for both woman or men,or whoever.Specially if it is a pretty woman.This way,you may even get a nice tip!
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 02:01 PM

Kjellstrom shows us why it is important to understand different perspectives in this world.

I've found that homosexual crowds are often times receptive to a slightly more risque/rowdy humor that I might use at Sunday mass, but it's important to know what you are doing.

Because a joke like Kjellstrom's is unfunny, rather stupid, and could be insulting to the more sensitive folks in the crowd.

We're not twelve anymore, and there is a lot of room for a lot of people on this planet.

This isn't a bad subject/discussion, lets try not to get it removed.
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 02:14 PM

AND ANOTHER THING.....

I did an Asian wedding (actually, I now do a LOT of Asian weddings) for the first time about 12 years ago. One lady SCREAMED and RAN AWAY after a trick (a good trick) as she thought, I found out later, it was REAL magic (magick?) I had upset her due to her religion/culture! I learnt a lesson...

My (very) Christian Wife (Judy) asked me, after I showed her her first card trick, "Please tell me this isn't real magic. It is JUST a trick, isn't it?" And she is NOT naive. Just Christian!

Paul Gordon
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 05:13 PM

Male/Female Gay/Straight

What are these. Aren't they just social constructions designed to uphold our harsh patriarchal order? Aren't these roles just labels of societal domination? I've always believed that magic should be a gender neutral zone.
Mentalist/Illusionist/Manipulator

Just social constructions designed to uphold our harsh magical order.

Noah, these terms, these definitions are used to describe and clarify so we know who or what we are talking about. Just as the terms 'male' and 'female' are important as well (without such labels, who knows, you could walk into the wrong bathroom).

Any "societal domination" you see doesn't come from the labels but from the "baggage" you attach to the labels.

Magic as a gender neutral zone... what exactly do you mean?

Sure, magicians have been mutilating women for hundreds of years and they all seem to love it (well, they keep smiling through their ordeals). Even when Sue-Anne chainsaws me in two people ask ME how I did it!?! I can see there are stereotypes ready to be broken there.

But are you referring to choice of volunteers? For example, if I go out to choose a man to assist with a trick I should be willing to take a man or a woman?

Are you referring to the performer's sex or sexuality as the "gender neutral zone"?

I'm not trying to be funny, I'm genuinely perplexed by your comment.
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 04/30/07 05:47 PM

By Noah Lavine
Aren't they just social constructions designed to uphold our harsh patriarchal order? Aren't these roles just labels of societal domination? I've always believed that magic should be a gender neutral zone.
Labels will always have a time and a place. Sometimes they are damned important. When someone in a laboratory is analyzing my medical tests, it might be important to know whether Im male or female.

When Im applying for most jobs, such labels should be irrelevant, but sometimes its not. As much as I might like it, a gym might not want to hire me as their womens locker room attendant. Gender is important in this case, yes?

In magic, the gender choice of volunteer can be very important to the success of the presentation. Since it is your job to entertain everyone in your audience, its up to you to make the best choice for the circumstance. In such cases, labels are handy. Theres nothing at all wrong with, May I have a lady volunteer?

Dustin
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 06:31 PM

Male and Female are not just social constructions. Didn't any of you ever see a woman with her clothes off? There are significant physical differences unrelated to society.


Meanwhile, I think you could do all your best husband/wife effects, only rework them, apparently on the fly, into wife/wife (or husband/husband). If you can act, this could be hilarious.
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Postby Pete Biro » 04/30/07 06:41 PM

Dustin... so, you've applied for Women's Locker Room Attendant jobs? :eek:
Stay tooned.
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 04/30/07 08:18 PM

Well, Pete, better than your being a towel boy at a ... oh never mind...too easy. :whack:
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 04/30/07 09:21 PM

I see no reason to lock the thread yet. Just have a civilized conversation. I think the issues raised are actually fairly interesting.
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Postby Guest » 04/30/07 10:44 PM

Several years ago, I was booked to perform at a gay couple's birthday celebration. The situation was complicated by the fact that their straight parents were all going to be there, and some of the guests felt a bit of discomfort with the mix.

I broke the ice with the following line in my introductory remarks: "I'm very happy to be here tonight at this wonderful gathering. I have the distinct feeling that some of my lines are going to take on a whole new meaning." Everyone laughed (the honorees had seen my act before) and everyone relaxed.

BTW, I hold the door open for everyone. I don't know what that makes me.

Courteous?
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Postby Guest » 05/01/07 12:07 AM

The simple solution is to treat people the way you want to be treated, with respect and dignity. It is amazing how well this works.
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Postby Guest » 05/01/07 01:59 AM

For Dave Le Fevre:

A few years ago I opened the door for a lady at a function; and she barked a sexist bigot comment at me.

Later on I saw her struggling to carry a heavy box. She saw me and said, "Aren't you going to help?"

Although I felt like saying, "You can't have it both ways, LOVE!" I said, "No...but I'll hold the door for you..."

Paul Gordon
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Postby Guest » 05/01/07 03:49 AM

Male/Female Gay/Straight

What are these. Aren't they just social constructions designed to uphold our harsh patriarchal order? Aren't these roles just labels of societal domination? I've always believed that magic should be a gender neutral zone.
"Harsh Patriarchal order/Societal Domination"
What are these?
Aren't they just artificial constructions to buttress the naked-emperor pretensions of some seriously disconnected-from-reality full-of-themselves university professors?
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Postby Guest » 05/01/07 04:11 AM

(Bill Palmer) Several years ago, I was booked to perform at a gay couple's birthday celebration.

I had the same experience in 1988, a few years before I became a professional magician. Small crowded restaurant, 30 people, hardly any women present. At that time I used to open my standup set with David Williamson's Ring and Rope Routine - the opening line was: "Does anybody have a steel ring? Preferebly chrome plated with a diameter of 4 and a half inches - No? Than I'll use mine..."
This usually got a little smile - here the room was roaring with laughter and it went on like this, no matter what I did or said - my 20 minute show lastet at least 30 minutes... only at the tender age of 22 I had not the slightest incling why that was so.... well times have changed since then. ;)

I am mentioning this, because it is not just the situation we should be aware of or the lines we should carefully select, but also our venerable props might turn "venereal" from a queer point of view - so keep that in mind the next time you hand your assistant those sponge balls or stuff that little red hanky into your fist...
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Postby Guest » 05/01/07 05:08 AM

Dear All,

I thought I had performed at every type of private function imagineable; weddings, parties, hen nights, stag nights, garden parties and even a funeral...

But...

Last Saturday I performed a magic lecture. No problem at all. Lovely, lovely people (great guests)...but...

They didn't tell me (that they were hobbyist magicians) when they booked me! (Paul & Harry sounded normal to me. I shouldn't have assumed... And, I guess, they probably thought that they didn't have to tell me!)

I nearly made a boo-boo when I met (last Sat) the 'audience'...I nearly asked to meet her 'new' husband, but I 'realised' in the nick of time they were... HOBBYISTS.

It was amazing how I had to change - on the hoof - my patter and tricks. So many changes had to be made. I do a lot of entertaining effects at weddings that rely on the normal audience reaction...

One of my 'lines' is, "Hi there, folks! I've been asked by the bride and groom to entertain you and show you one of the world's best tricks!" Tricky! (By the way, I never say the actual names of the originators because I realise that most lecture-attendees, the hangers-on ones or the youngsters, aren't always too sure of the originators' names. And most don't even care! Anyway, that's another story...)

An interesting learning curve! Now I'm going to rehearse and plan some new lines and alternative endings to some of my tricks for the next time I have to work for 'magicians'...

Joe E. Pike
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Postby Kevin Connolly » 05/01/07 05:58 AM

JOE...WTF!
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Postby Guest » 05/01/07 06:13 AM

Okay, but what about mentalists? Can you safely do classics like the six card repeat? What kind of presentation changes would make it work for them. Really don't want to mess up by making a lame Corinda joke. :confused:
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Postby Guest » 05/01/07 08:23 AM

Dear Terry: Yes, I'm proud of that 'spur-of-the-moment' line! It went RIGHT over her head!

Paul
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Postby Guest » 05/01/07 08:21 PM

First, well-done, Mr. Pike.

And again, as usual, Mr. Alexander speaks the Word.

In my late 20s, like a lot of wanna-be beach bums, I set out for the end of the road.
I had a Hemingway fixation combined with a bit of a Jimmy Buffet influence, and after visiting Key West on a cross-country-and-back-binge, decided to move there.
I did, in April '93.

--The pertinence of this is the fact that Key West has a bit of a reputation as being not only a spring-break party town but a gay haven; perhaps you've heard.

For almost 2 years I managed the bar, and was the magician-in-residence at a popular restaurant called Savannah (915 Duval--R.I.P.). The owners--who were the chef and the host were gay (the stories I could relate about those characters, and [or] the kitchen staff--AY CARUMBA, but I digress...).

The place was a nice big victorian house at the most-crucial intersection on the island, so we were almost always busy.
Often groups would show up. --From Harley Riders on one of their road trips, the predictable spring break and "Fantasy Fest" crowds, the cigarette boat racers (oh, how everyone hated it when the "boat people" would come to town--nothing worse than rich white trash...) and occasionally, a gay group of some sort--you are free to wonder what the hell that could mean.

Well, a group of lesbians started having meetings there, in the backyard on the patio by the bar. They became regulars I was glad to see.
It always struck me as interesting that they liked me, simply because I didn't condescend to them, and didn't treat them like sub-human scum. They were totally surprised by that unique approach.
Who'd have thought? Treat people nice, and they respond in kind. Huh--never occured to me.
It seems they were so used to being treated crappily, day-to-day they were very appreciative of even the most basic common courtesies. What a shock.

They liked me so much, I am proud to say, as a straight guy, that they made me an honorary lesbian!
Probably the biggest laugh I got from a crowd those 2 years down there was when I said they probably wouldn't want me after all because I had such horrible luck with women. [rimshot]

Now, I have spent almost all of my life living around and in San Francisco. I could literally not care LESS whether some one is gay or not. In fact I am literally tired of hearing about it. That people get riled up about such trivial b.s. in this day and age is unconscionable to me. But, evidently, there are still people that fear certain kinds of people, for some reason, but out here, it is seriously old news. (Who in Hell CARES who one sleeps with?!) :sleep:

People are people, dammit!!
Why is that still such a mysterious revelation in the 21st century?!
Do unto others, no?

I have not said the above hoo-haw to try to impress anyone, but rather to impress upon someone--anyone that, hard as it may be for you to imagine, gay people are pretty much the same as you...except often funnier and usually way-more creative.

No! REALLY! You heard it here first: Even people that don't look like you, and that may come from completely different places, may still turn out to be cool people!

I [censored] you not. :cool:
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Postby Guest » 05/02/07 05:49 PM

castawaydave,

Hear, hear!!

JMD
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