Teacher Fired for Toothpick Trick

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Postby jerry lazar » 05/05/08 08:33 PM

Even when you think you're using your powers for good, it can backfire!

http://www.tampabays10.com/news/local/a ... ryid=79533
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 05/05/08 08:49 PM

I suspect there were "other" issues like his leaving youngsters on the internet and diverging from approved lesson plans.
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Postby JustinRYoung » 05/06/08 02:08 PM

As odd as it might sound, a substitute teach was recently dismissed from his assignment, possibly putting his career in jeopardy, for showing his class a 30-second magic trick.

Or according to reports, as his superiors put it: wizardry.

Substitute teacher Jim Piculas does a 30-second magic trick where a toothpick disappears then reappears.

But after performing it in front of a classroom at Rushe Middle School in Land O Lakes, Piculas said his job did a disappearing act of its own.

I get a call the middle of the day from the supervisor of substitute teachers. He says, Jim, we have a huge issue. You cant take any more assignments. You need to come in right away, he said.

When Piculas went in, he learned his little magic trick cast a spell that went much farther than hed hoped.

I said, Well Pat, can you explain this to me? Youve been accused of wizardry, [he said]. Wizardry? he asked.

For the record, as confirmed by the video that accompanies this story on the website, this looks to be the same trick explained by Criss Angel on a few television appearances including his spot on then-nationally syndicated Megan Mullally show.

In other words, its not exactly a top secret.

http://itricks.com/news/?p=3682
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Postby Jim Maloney » 05/06/08 02:14 PM

Miguel Ferrer did the same trick on Medium last night. And he was the bad guy, so that trick must be eeeevil.

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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 05/06/08 02:35 PM

Pretty much small town and school board politics IMHO.

Now if you want to boycott the state - say have all IBM and SAM members in FL voice a directed protest... maybe interesting.

Or perhaps better for some to snicker to themselves about how he must have really done a bad job sticking a toothpick to his thumbnail to get fired rather than just booed by the kids.

This happened in January?
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 05/06/08 03:26 PM

There are a lot of incredibly small-minded and stupid people in the world. Bummer!
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Postby mrgoat » 05/07/08 05:40 AM

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Postby Joe M. Turner » 05/07/08 06:57 AM

I think the magic angle was a good story for the news and made him look like a more sympathetic and "unfairly wronged" character, but I suspect his other job performance issues (leaving students unsupervised on the internet, not accomplishing the prepared lesson plans) were of far more concern than "wizardry."
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Postby MaxNY » 05/07/08 08:55 AM

UUUmmmmmmm....Butter....
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Postby Jim Maloney » 05/07/08 10:38 AM

Just wanted to make a note that anyone wishing to discuss the Florida substitute teacher who was fired after performing a magic trick in class should do so in this thread. I've already merged two other threads into this one -- just want to make sure everyone knows that this is already being discussed and that there is no need for multiple threads on it.

Thanks,
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Postby mrgoat » 05/07/08 10:39 AM

I realised it was already being discussed after I posted and it was then too late to delete my post. Sorry. :)
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Postby LaMont » 05/07/08 12:02 PM

I was a teacher and School Psychologist for over 35 years and performed magic on a regular basis with my students and never once realized that I was casting a "spell." The district's reaction to the substitute's magic trick was absurd.

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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 05/07/08 12:21 PM

Exactly LaMont, therefore the "magic trick" aspect of the story is a rationalization and the actual issues are being ignored for the time being as far as what's being offered in public.
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Postby Gordolini » 05/07/08 12:25 PM

I heard the encore was a disappering cigarette.... :-)
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Postby amp » 06/20/08 08:22 AM

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Postby Mark Pettey » 06/20/08 01:19 PM

How great that they put Marty's magic shop on this ! Marty has a small shop in Tampa that has great stock, friendly counter service, and even hosts an SYM group for meetings in the back. A rare bird in this day and age. If you are in Tampa, you must stop and see this place and say hi to Marty. He is even open on Sunday, surely a sign that he is an evil wizrd, eh ?
(just kidding, Marty!)
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Postby mai-ling » 06/20/08 05:24 PM

i don't know why the school admin
has such an issue with the teacher.

aren't magicians still working the
school circuit?

or was that just the era of my dad's
generation?
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