JAM AUCTIONS

A place where beginners can participate, ask questions, and post their views. However, beginners typically ask a lot of questions about sources, tricks, books, and so on. In fact, all magicians are interested (or should be) in the provenance of tricks, ideas, and related matters. This department will service these needs.
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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Guest » November 16th, 2003, 6:52 pm

Here is a tale concerning the run out.
A few years ago I was in London on a visit and I decided to grace the Magic Circle with my presence.
I remember that Randy Wakeman was there doing a lecture. I arrived late and only saw the last 15 minutes. I whispered to my neighbour, A London magician "he dresses just like a typical American trade show magician" My cynical British magician friend snorted and said "oh, really? Smart suit and loud tie?" This amused me greatly and I have always made sure that when I do a trade show I always wear a smart suit and loud tie. It does seem to be a uniform for people doing this work.

But to the run out. I looked across the room and was astonished to see two run out workers watching the lecture. I had known these fellows from years before and was well aware that they were two of the biggest villians in London.
I couldn't believe my eyes.
To this day I have no idea what they were doing there or how they got in. They were not magicians .

I went up to them and they seemed pleased to see me. They looked so out of place among all the suited banker and lawyer types of the Magic Circle and I must say that they stood out like a sore thumb. They were weather beaten and scarred. I was sure that at any moment someone was going to come over and ask them to leave.Nobody did though.

I still can't figure out what they were doing there. I do know that one of them was an expert 3 card monte worker. In fact years ago he showed me how the street workers bend the card into an "S" shape rather than the "V" shape that magicians use.

He also used to regale me with tales of how a legendary street worker called "Mossie" would make a living with the "Dutch Looper" otherwise known as "English Monte" or the "Grafters 3 card trick"
Mossie would growl at people "do you know where the queen is, mate?" No matter what the answer Mossie would snarl "in Buckingham Palace, of course!" I have used the gag for years, since I also work the "Dutch Looper"

Still, the 3 card monte was the only trick they knew or would be interested in so why they were really there I haven't the slightest idea. They did seem to be watching Randy very carefully.

One of them said "how are you, Ronnie? I haven't seen you for years!" British grafters have never heard of Mark Lewis. They all know me as Ronnie Mc'Leod. In fact I had a young magician work for me once and he kept telling me how he hated Mark Lewis. I asked him if he had ever met this infamous fellow. He said "no, but I have heard all about him. I just don't like him" Since everybody called me Ronnie he had no idea who he was working for. After about 3 weeks someone eventually told him and he went quite green.

Anyway, these run out workers told me that they were coming over in the next few weeks to scam the good people of Canada. I foolishly gave them my phone number and told them to contact me when they arrived. Thankfully they never did. I don't think they even came over here.

I am still puzzled as to what drew them to the Randy Wakeman lecture and how the hell they gained admission in the first place. You do have to be signed in by someone.

The Magic Circle are a very stuffy lot. I think they would have gained by asking these fellows to do a lecture. Mind you, all the coat pockets of the members would have been picked in the cloakroom so perhaps it is just as well that they didn't.

Guest

Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Guest » November 16th, 2003, 6:58 pm

Jam auctions are what are known to the British authorities as "Mock Auctions."

According to the Hampshire Trading Standards Service:



The Mock Auctions Act 1961 is intended to regulate the conduct of one-day sales and similar, where the seller gains the confidence of customers by giving away goods, or selling a few fairly cheap bargains, then uses the knowledge he has gained about who in the crowd is prepared to trust him, to deceive the gullible into paying large amounts for shoddy goods.

The specific actions which are offences under the Act are:-

reducing the price of goods after their sale has been concluded by the "auctioneer" accepting a bid;
restricting the right to bid for goods to those who have bought other items;
giving out free gifts.
In order to look up British grafter's slang, you need not the Oxford English Dictionary,but The Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English (Eighth Edition.)

This book is not only fascinating in itself, but an invaluable aid to interpreting Mark Lewis's conversational and written communications.

The book has a whole section on mock auction slang. UK readers may be interested to know that the word gazump comes from this particular swindle.

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Guest » November 16th, 2003, 7:40 pm

They have been bringing in all sorts of laws in the UK for years to close these people down.

However, they hire lawyers who approve the spiel. They keep altering the spiel every time a law or an amendment to a law is brought in. The police or trading standards people just can't keep up with it and as a cop told me they have higher priorities than spending all day in a run out joint trying to trip them up.

It all depends upon how many complaints they get, of course. In a holiday resort more complaints come to the police station than in a non resort area.

With regard to British grafters slang it is completely different from American pitchman's lingo. Two completely different languages.
Only two words remain the same. Joint and Flash.
Possibly a third one. I noticed that Mike Walsh used the word "dreck". British grafters use this word all the time.

I do not approve of vulgarity so I cannot tell you what it means. Besides, that Scott Guinn fellow is here and we do not want him reporting the matter back to the Magic Cafe.

Jewish people know what it means. British grafters unlike the US ones use an amazing amount of Yiddish in their slang. Non Jewish grafters use yiddish expressions all the time.

British grafters slang consists of a mixture of Yiddish, rhyming slang and words spelled backwards.There are also other origins that seem to be lost in antiquity.

With regard to words spelled backwards in a phonetic sense. "elrig" means "girl" and "Lettee"
means hotel. Grafters will often greet other in a new town by saying "have you found a good lettee, yet?"

"Jekyll" means sub standard, usually referring to merchandise or customers)
This is how it goes. Jekyll reminds you of Hyde.(Robert Louis Stevenson story) Hyde rhymes with Shnide. Shnide is a grafters word for substandard-I have no idea why. So you can use "jeckle" or "Shnide" when referring to crap merchandise.

It might be fun if I were to post a list of American pitchmen's words with the UK translation.
The amusing thing is that few people on here will be familiar with either language. Americans will not know the American lingo and Brits will not know the UK lingo. And of course neither will know the opposing lingo either.

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Guest » November 16th, 2003, 9:49 pm

Phychic, James in Toronto mentioned the word gazump, that word is my vocabulary and I'll tell you a funny story about it. I have enjoyed your post, I guess my neighboors think I going nuts laughing but I find your post funny. So here is funny one about the gazump. There is a new version of the jam done here that is called the baby jam, only because it is very fast. Takes about 20 minutes once you build a tip ( crowd )You nail them for $10. then gazump them for $10 more $5 for what I have in the back of my mind,give me $2 to buy a drink and goodby.The fellow that had the jam in Circus-Circus in LasVegas created this. Someone had a route of car shows booked with another pitch and wanted to do some kind of jam, so they came up with this. He told me about it and a friend of mine,a pitchman and sideshow operattor, magician,fire eater wanted to do it.So we did.We played the end of the car show season and he wanted to go on fairs and I didn't so he does still to this day and plays flea markets in the winter. Went he first went on fairs he made something that looked like a sideshow in a 30' x 30' tent an this jackpot comes from then. Now the gazump, thats selling them there own money back, thats what it means here in the U.S. They buy the nailer which is a gold plated neckchain for $10 and then they are shown three more items A ginsu knife, a set of perfume pens and a pair od diamond earings.Then you pick uo and empty bag and ask someone to give you $20 for the bag.Someone does and you give them all three items and put their $10 bill in the bag, would you say $20 for it all, send up your $20.Then everybody else with a nailer can get the same. Here's the blowoff, after the pitch this woman is looking on the ground.John says, did you loose something lady. She says I had $30 when I came here , now all I have is $10,I must have dropped the other $10...still under the gas. He says lady if I find I'll turn it into the office you can call back tomorrow but I bet somebody must have got it.Thimking on you feet....But John could always talk on a snake..... :whack:

Guest

Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Guest » November 17th, 2003, 11:06 am

Yep. The British boys also sell people their own money back.

There is much wickedness in the world.

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Steve V » November 17th, 2003, 8:31 pm

I want to thank you fella's for the wonderful stories.... makes an ol' sea dog proud.
Steve V
Steve V

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Guest » November 25th, 2003, 11:18 pm

Two comments/translationa. Drek is the Yiddish word for excrement. It was sometimes used in a pitch as an "inside" This item folks is imported drek from France
Now shneid, is a rummy players term, at least in my dad's era. For not scoring any points, which doubled the stakes. So if in a game of 500 rummy, you scored 500 and I didn't score at all. Whatever the original stake we decided on would be doubled
from
Ford

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David Regal
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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby David Regal » December 2nd, 2003, 7:06 am

This is a wonderful thread. Please suggest some further reading on the subject.

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Pete Biro
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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Pete Biro » December 2nd, 2003, 8:56 am

Regal, where you be? Wasup?
Stay tooned.

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Guest » December 2nd, 2003, 4:44 pm

I rather think the references on here mentioning newspaper articles and books are about the only sources you are going to find.

It is not something that grafters particularly like to publicise althoug inevitably a bit creeps out.

No. I bet you everything is on here.
Not quite sure what it has to do with magic though.

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Matthew Field
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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Matthew Field » December 2nd, 2003, 5:38 pm

Originally posted by Psychic:
Not quite sure what it has to do with magic though.
It's one of the "allied arts," Mark, like ventriloquism, only more entertaining.

Matt Field

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Guest » December 2nd, 2003, 7:37 pm

I am not sure that "art" is what the British Consumer protection authorities would call it.

Furthermore I am not sure what it is "allied" to except shoplifting, cardsharping, pickpocketing, and armed robbery.

Which reminds me-I knew a ram worker once who used to gamble excessively.Friend of mine. He would make a lot of money scamming people but would then lose it on the horses. Every street corner in the UK has what are known as "betting shops". They are licenced bookmakers and gambling is legal there.

This chap (let us call him "Walter" as tradition demands) lost a fortune in one particular betting shop. He therefore decided to recoup his money in a most logical fashion. Armed robbery.

He decided to arm himself with a gun. This is a feat in itself in Britain where crimes with firearms are very rare. Gun laws are probably the strictest in the world. Even the police are not allowed to use guns except in exceptional circumstances.

He decided in the spirit of poetic justice to rob a betting shop. However he seemed to think it would be more convenient to rob his own. I think this may have been a flawed plan in light of future events.

Everything went according to plan. He went in wearing a stocking mask and held up the place and walked out with the money. Unfortunately his voice is very distinctive and sounded rather familiar to the staff.

His troubles were compounded by the fact that when he left the shop a girl worker who had been out to lunch for a break came back just in time to see him leave. When seeing him with the stocking mask she gaped with astonishment and in a spirit of great recognition exclaimed "Walter, what on earth are you doing with that funny mask over your head?!"

Shortly after that "Walter" spent some time as a guest of Her Majesty. He was not invited to the Palace though. His residence for the next few years was somewhat less luxurious.

A few years later I met him again and by then I had acquired psychic powers. He didn't believe I had them but his wife did. She asked me to do a reading for him. I demurred.
He said "Look Ronnie, I just want you to tell me how long I am going to get for knifing that Paki"

In a spirit of great astonishment I inquired as to what "Paki" he had been referring to. It seems that there was a gentleman of Asian origin who was not satisfied with his purchases at the Ram shop. He protested a little too loudly and "Walter" stuck a knife into him in a most inappropriate manner.
Blood all over the place. Very messy indeed.

This Pakistani gentleman thought that was not a way to develop good customer relations and consequently called the police who charged Walter.

The funny thing is that Walter was acquitted as a good upstanding citizen should be. His victim refused to testify in court. The police went round to the pub near the courtroom and confronted the chap and tried to drag him to court to testify. He wouldn't. He seemed to rethink his position and had decided that Walter was rather a nice chap after all and that he had misjudged him.

It was rumoured among the grafters that Walter had bribed his victim with several thousand pounds to show forgiveness.

I haven't seen Walter for some years now. Perhaps it is just as well.

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Geno Munari » February 8th, 2005, 6:22 pm

I will donate $75 to the charity of your choice(which may begin at home) for a real, genuine, jan auction script.

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Craig Matsuoka » February 8th, 2005, 7:45 pm

There's an amusing U.K. commercial playing on this site that pokes some fun at jam auctions:

Click here to see commercial

Does anyone know if it's an accurate portrayal?

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Ian Kendall » February 9th, 2005, 2:04 am

I've seen that Ad a couple of times. There are some aspects that look familiar, but others that are different.

Firstly, at the auction I saw (detailed earlier in the thread) there was no 'bidding' of the goods per se - they were offered at a price to people. However, it looked like the objects were handed back in a black bin bag, this is definitely accurate!

The other things were the way the doors slammed shut, and the knuckledraggers manning the Customer Service desk...

Geno, using the various comments in the thread I could probably recreate the script as I saw it (I've got a fairly good memory for these things). However, why on earth would you want it :)

Take care, Ian

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Don Stachowiak » August 12th, 2008, 10:33 am

This may have been mentioned before in this thread, but I didn't want to read through six pages of posts to find out. Don Driver has a DVD set out of a live Jam Auction featuring Jack Nyberg.
Whit Haydn and Chef Anton have this set available on their "School for Scoundrels" site.
Don

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby prise » September 8th, 2008, 9:47 pm

Good Article. This is the end of civilisation as we know it.
A Scotsman who does not like Robert Burns.

I used to devour his poetry for hours on end. And I lived in England at the time, not Scotland.

The only poet I have been fascinated with.

At least he didn't do card tricks. Or work the run out.

================================================================

rosy

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby ColinClark » October 28th, 2009, 4:11 pm

I am very impressed with the comments in this thread and wonder why it fizzled out!

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Richard Kaufman » October 28th, 2009, 4:43 pm

Nothing left to auction!
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Mark.Lewis » October 28th, 2009, 6:03 pm

Good Heavens! It is Professor Clark! He must be the only professor in history to have worked the run out known in the Excited States of America as the Jam Auction. The American version is a mere game run by choirboys in comparison. He actually knows some of the people I know and this is what attracted him to this thread in the first place. He is not a magician.

The good professor (or in his run out days the not so good professor) has written a most wonderful book on these matters knows as the Hard Sell and I got a copy from Abe bookshops for a very silly price.

Actually I realise that I must correct the above statement. Professor Clark did NOT work the Run Out. He found out all about it though and I am astonished that he was able to. He did work as a market pitcher and it is all described in most wonderful piece of literature.

I recommend it thoroughly.

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Mark.Lewis » October 30th, 2009, 3:56 am

I suppose I had better explain what a "market pitcher" is since the concept does not seem to be prevalent in North America from what I have seen.

This may get a trifle complicated. The word "pitch" in the UK has an entirely different meaning than it does in North America. And yet both meanings are relevant to the work of the grafter/pitchman. In America to pitch means to sell. In the UK it refers to the location that you work from. And to complicate matters even further it has another meaning. It means the actual crowd in front of you. American pitchmen (the proper word is grafter) use the rather silly word "tip" instead. It really is about time Americans learned to speak the Queen's English properly.

Now I have to explain the "grafter" thing. In America they have a word called "grifter" which does NOT have the same meaning as the word "grafter" A grafter is what Yanks call a "pitchman" and a grifter is what Americans call a scam artist. However just because you are a scam artist does not make you a grafter since a grafter gathers a crowd and sells to them. So a grafter can be a grifter (and usually is) but he doesn't have to be. And a "grifter" doesn't necessarily have to be a grafter since there are lots of ways of scamming people without having to draw a crowd.

This explanation has quite exhausted me but I shall plough on. A market pitcher in the UK is not quite the same as what is known in America as a "pitchman". And although he is a grafter (I say "he" because I have never seen a female market pitcher in my entire life) he is a fair bit different from other grafters.

This is getting very complicated and I wish I hadn't started it. I am sure that I beginning to sound as incomprehensible as Jonathon Townsend.

Let me take a deep breath and try to continue. To clarify matters there are two types of grafters. Actually there are three but one of them are jam auction or run out workers and they have already been covered. There is the regular grafters who demonstrate and sell one or two products only such as kitchen knives, paint pads, or vegamatics. And yes, svengali decks. They are demonstrators but they are not market pitchers which are a separate breed entirely and I have never seen them in America. Now this type of demonstrator often works in a market but he isn't a market pitcher.

I am dreading this but I suppose I will now have to explain the word "market". There are all sorts of outdoor and a few indoor street markets dotted all over the UK. The nearest equivalent over here is flea markets but they are not quite the same thing as British street markets. I am not going to explain the difference in case I have a nervous breakdown trying to explain it. Suffice it to say that it is the nearest equivalent.

Market pitchers are still grafters but they are a different type of grafter. Instead of one product or two they have a massive range such as toys, radios, electrical goods, household linens etc;. They don't work from a counter as you can well imagine.Instead they work from either a massive stall with a very large frontage or more often from the back of a lorry (truck). They have assistants who hand them up the goods, serve customers and generally assist. They draw massive crowds which are far bigger than a regular grafter (demonstrator) does.

With witty patter and showmanship that magicians would be green with envy at they sell the big variety of goods that they have on display.

The esteemed Colin Clark and his fellow author Trevor Pinch wrote a masterly book on this subject. It is called "The Hard Sell". I recommended it to a well known trade show magician on the proviso that he kept quiet about it. However since I can't keep quiet myself and since Professor Clark himself has arrived on this thread I am happy to finally tell you all about it.

This particular book is mainly about market pitchers but the authors also cover wicked people like me to an extend. I am a demonstrator type of grafter rather than a market pitcher. Mind you my brother was a market pitcher selling bed linens, blankets, towels and suchlike. Now you may marvel and be astonished that such static and boring items like towels and sheets can be sold by drawing a crowd and chattering about them but it can be done and is done all over the UK.

My brother went on to become a millionaire with a chain of 30 shops selling linens and in fact developed a wonderful mail order business selling those very items. But he started by working the street markets and drawing a crowd in the way that messrs Pinch and Clark describe.

My brother knows more about the run out than I do even though he never worked it himself. This is because most market pitchers know about it and actually detest it since the public confuse their work with the ram workers and give the pitchers a bad name by association. The two operations are completely different but they have a similar appearance hence the confusion.

I mentioned in the above old thread that run out workers (jam auction) have floormen that are known all over the country as "Walter". My brother recently told me that they are also often called "Sebastian". That is something that even I did not know and I am quite devasted to find that I don't know everything after all.

However messrs Pinch and Clark do know everything about this business. I am constantly amazed when reading their book how two not so worldy wise professors figured out how the whole thing works. Not only does the book cover market pitching they touch on demonstrator type grafters and even street entertainers like some of you may be here. The masterly part of the book however is how they explain every detail of how the run out works including all the deceptiveness of it. I am amazed how they prised the secrets from these people.It is the ONLY detailed description of how the whole scam works.

Buy it.

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby AJM » October 30th, 2009, 4:26 am

Come back JT, all is forgiven.
Corner-person Begrudger

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Jonathan Townsend » October 30th, 2009, 9:08 am

Bob Cassidy also starts to describe the jam auction in his magic newswire interview.
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Mark.Lewis » October 30th, 2009, 10:18 am

"starts to describe?" What about finishing? The Hard Sell book does just that. The British version anyway. From start to unscrupulous finish. It also corrects a mistake that I made in this thread. I assumed the term "run out" came from the fact that the people who did it were run out of town. I was wrong. It seems that the name came from the fact that people would run out of money.

There was an awful programme on BBC television featuring some magician or other. It was called "The Real Hustle" purporting to explain what goes on. It was the biggest load of old baloney you have ever seen and completely inaccurate. Unless people have worked it for real or at least been on the fringes of it like I have they have no idea what goes on. Don Driver has a DVD out showing Jack Nyberg working the less vicious American version of the scam but you still won't be able to figure out what exactly is going on.

You will need the Pinch and Clark book to finally figure it out. Even after they were allowed to film it (and I am amazed that they were allowed to do so without bodily harm being inflicted upon them) the grafters laughed at them and said they wouldn't be able to figure it out. And they weren't!

But then they did a very clever thing. They interviewed lots of other people like the police, journalists, consumer protection authorities and the victims themselves. None of them knew exactly how it was done either but they gave little glimpses here and there and provided part of the picture. Still only a small part of it was glimpsed after all that.

But then they had a stroke of genius. They went back to the Run Out workers and told them the bits that they had found out. Grafters love to talk as can be seen by this very post. So after the good professors showed that they knew half of what was going on the grafters no doubt under the influence of the demon drink spilled the rest of the beans and told the cherished secrets themselves.

And the wicked professors then wrote a book describing the activity and the methods. No doubt there is a hit contract out on them to this day for spilling the beans. Hopefully Campus security will protect them.

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Mark.Lewis » October 31st, 2009, 6:49 am

I see that Colin Clark has not been back since he posted. Methinks he doesn't know that he is being talked about here and thought the conversation had come to an end. However conversation never comes to an end when I am about. I wish I had the energy to find and inform him but I haven't.

Regarding the run out workers I recall them being a very nasty bunch. I shared an apartment with one of them that I think might be mentioned in Mr Clark's book. He was a very nice fellow at the time but he wasn't doing the run out then. He was just an ordinary pitchman.

Then he got in with the run out boys and God knows what that association did to him. I heard that he spent a bit of time inside one of Her Majesty's Prisons. It seems that the Blackpool Constabulary sent in an undercover cop to check out the Ram because of all the complaints. Unfortunately for both him and them they found out what he was up to. It was unfortunate for him because they beat the crap out of him. However it was unfortunate for them because the Blackpool police do not take kindly to one of their own being beaten up and accordingly arrested the whole bloody lot of them and they went down for some time, including my former apartment sharer. Or so I heard. Third hand I will admit.

I have read Mr Clark's book and I did find it quite fascinating. My favourite bit is the attitude that grafters exhibited when our two hapless authors spouted stuff that they had studied from marketing books. When they started to chatter about "target markets" the grafters started laughing at them and made some witticism. I can't remember what the witticism was but it was very cynical indeed and may possibly have been to the effect that "we are not bloody archers" or something. I may have this wrong though and I will have to refer back to the book.

One moment please. I have now referred. What they actually said was "we are grafters, not snipers".

I also liked it when the authors timidly mentioned the awful marketing phrase "product knowledge" to one grafter who snorted "Product knowledge is NOT important. PEOPLE KNOWLEDGE is!!!!"

I related to all this because I hate it when all those silly magic marketing types on the Magic Cafe spout a load of crap about "demographics" "target markets" and "product knowledge". I feel like spewing up when they talk that Dave Dee stuff. The only "marketing" that is the REAL stuff is that achieved and learned when you are standing in a howling gale on Blackpool's Central Pier trying to stop your cards blowing off into the Irish Sea. (I used fishing weights to do that).

It seems that our two esteemed professors are now of that mind set too since they say that the premise of the book is that street wise grafters know far more about salesmanship that all the hot shot corporate types put together.

And they do.

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby OneConArtist'SoN » October 16th, 2010, 9:39 pm

I am Wayne's grandson...I am twenty four years old and felt very close to my Grandfather, in fact I idolized him. So I can't begin to tell you how much anything you could share with me about the time you had spent with him back before I was able to. You certainly wouldn't be the first to tell me things about such things, but I would be eager to hear it from your perspective. Please respond shortly, thank you. - Skye W. Garrison

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby David Alexander » October 16th, 2010, 11:00 pm

For those of you who are interested in Jam Auctions the last exponent of this rare form of selling, Jack Nyberg, gave Don Driver permission to video his auction from start to finish.

It is available in a two-DVD set for $49.95 plus shipping and handling.

See: www.dondriver.net for details.

David Alexander

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Re:I'm no Larry!!!

Postby OneConArtist'SoN » October 23rd, 2010, 9:22 pm

Who'll give me a dollar for nothin'???...Don't worry, I don't want your money now, just raise your hand if you would be willing to hand up a dollar for this empty box...

Sound familiar? It should. I never met a man to this day that could ever compare who my Grandfather was in my eyes. As a young boy I couldn't hear enough of the stories he would tell me about all of the fascinating people, places, and things he had met, went, and did in his life. If this reaches you, I will follow it up with the hope that we can touch base. Until then, I'll be 2/10ing my inbox. I want you to know that I'm with it!...sincerely, -Skye Wayne Garrison

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Dustin Stinett
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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Dustin Stinett » May 21st, 2011, 4:14 pm

David Alexander wrote:For those of you who are interested in Jam Auctions the last exponent of this rare form of selling, Jack Nyberg, gave Don Driver permission to video his auction from start to finish.

It is available in a two-DVD set for $49.95 plus shipping and handling.

See: www.dondriver.net for details.

David Alexander

I recently had the opportunity to view the Jam Auction DVD. It is really a remarkable thing to watch.

While the video quality is not the bestit was made with hand-held camera, so its accordingly jumpyand it sometimes hard to see exactly what Jack Nyberg is actually doing, this doesnt really take away from the overall experience of seeing this scam in action.

Watching Nyberg grab a crowd, he starts with a handful and in minutes has a large group, is in itself a lesson that buskers should watch.

But what really took me was watching what the host, Don Driver, describes as a mob mentality overtake these people. It is amazing to watch people literally hand over their last dollar for nothing. Yes, eventually they get somethingsomething very cheapbut they were handing over their money without knowing what they might get in return. And they are practically throwing it at Nyberg.

It really is amazing, and I highly recommend this DVD to anyone interested in learning about Jam Auctions and the lessons that can be garnered from watching a seasoned practitioner work a crowd.

Dustin

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby SteveP » May 24th, 2011, 9:14 pm

I'm hoping these will be available again soon.

Last year I introduced Don Driver to David Alexander when Don wanted to sell the rights to all of his DVDs. I've known Don since I was 13.

I've been hosting DonDriver.net & SvengaliPitch.com for David since David bought the business from Don. When David passed away last year, I removed the buy buttons and the contact information from the site so his widow Penny didn't have to deal with fulfilling orders she may not have been able to take care of. These DVDs are duplicated individually and are not mass duplicated.

She has expressed interest in selling off the business and I've gotten her in touch with a couple of interested parties, but no deals have been reached yet.

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Kabloom
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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Kabloom » May 27th, 2011, 8:35 pm

Jam auction sounds similar to methods used in time share seminars.

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby SteveP » July 8th, 2011, 9:18 am

I'm pleased to announce that the Don Driver material is available once again! Chris Wasshuber has bought the rights to this from the late David Alexander's estate and has made them available at Lybrary.com

http://www.lybrary.com/don-driver-m-78510.html

You can find the Jam Auction video here:

http://www.lybrary.com/the-jam-auction-p-108131.html

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby A1exM » July 8th, 2011, 6:35 pm

Thanks Steve

I've been looking for this for a while!

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Dustin Stinett
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Re: Jam Auctions and Jack Nyberg, "The Gee Whiz Kid"

Postby Dustin Stinett » August 13th, 2012, 11:23 pm

I recently had the opportunity to view a 1998 documentary on Jack Nyberg. While Janice Durands film is not a great moviestrictly speaking from the viewpoint of pure filmmakingit is absolutely captivating. At the end of the film viewers with any insight at all into the world of the Jam Auction and other cons might wonder who is more deceived: the subject of the filmdoes he really believe that hes merely an honest businessman and entertaineror director Durand who seems to be buying it and so, by extension, passes this hokum on to her viewers. I think its neither.

I believe that Nybergwho shares some fascinating insights into his techniqueknows hes also dishing up nonsense to make his chosen profession less repellent, perhaps thinking that hes fooling the filmmaker and her audience. But I suspect that the filmmaker also knows this and lets the target audience of this filman audience that knows bettersee through these transparent justifications while being able to entice the revelation of several invaluable facets of what, at its roots, is a con game and she gets it directly from its top practitioner.

By getting Mr. Nyberg to happily spill some delicious details, I like to think that the filmmaker may have conned the conman. At the same time, she tells his remarkable story, and it is a story worth watching.

Available on DVD for the last few years, The Gee Whiz Kid is subtitled Jack Nyberg: The Reinvention of an American Pitchman. Durand follows Nyberg from a Wisconsin county faira dry hole at best for the Jam Manto his attempt to permanently install a Jam Auction in a Wyoming tourist destination. In between Nyberg tells his own story from an honest to goodness All American Boy to the world of carnivalswhere he worked as a talker at various sideshows and 10-in-1 tentsto Las Vegas and the wide-open downtown underworld of Freemont Street Jam Auctions. Along the way, the young man was mentored by some major league characters from these worlds and, listening to one who appears on the film, eventually the student became the master.

Unlike the Jam Auction DVD produced by Don Driver (and still available at the link above) where we see the entire Auction from the Tip to its incredible conclusion whereall but literallythe Jam Man charms the last dollars out of the pockets of the crowd, we see only snippets of the auction itself. But also unlike the Driver DVD, we get those personal insights from Nyberg. Remarkably, he claims he doesnt use some of these techniques anymore, but of course we know he does since weve seen him do it in the Jam Auction DVD made after this documentary was filmed.

For those interested in the Jam and/or Jack Nyberg, this documentary is a must-have production. It is an invaluable companion to the Don Driver DVD, but it stands alone in its biographical importance. Nyberg allowed Durand, and therefore we viewers, into his world. He shows us some things he wants us to see, but the director gets him to show us some things we want to see.

The DVD is available directly from Ms. Durand for only $25. She can be reached via email at JaniceGeeWhiz@gmail.com. Unlike the items sold by Mr. Nyberg, this product really is worth the money.

Dustin

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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Dustin Stinett » February 22nd, 2014, 3:23 am

FYI: An in depth article by Jerry Detacker on the Jam Auction appears in the February 2014 issue of The Linking Ring. Jerry has an insider's view on this scam. I've read the piece before it was published and those who like this subject will enjoy it.

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Brad Jeffers
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Re: JAM AUCTIONS

Postby Brad Jeffers » February 23rd, 2014, 6:28 am

HERE is some interesting footage of a young Jack Nyberg working a jam auction in Las Vegas in 1976.


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