Here's a guy who does NeuroMagic. It combines magic and illusion with neuroscience and psychology. Here he is doing a coin trick.
[Update: So, he's removed the video. You snooze, you lose, people. That's why you need to visit this site every hour on the hour. (No, please don't.) You're not missing much if you didn't see it. It was just someone performing a coin trick somewhat poorly.]
Wow! That was some stunning magic. Was it me or did those coins just seem to melt in and out of existence in a flash of fire?! I really need to do some research to understand the neuroscience of how this fooled my brain. brb
Exciting news! I worked with some doctors and scientists and they did some neuroimaging and they were able to figure out how this trick fooled me. Apparently I have a brain-eating parasite.
Now look, I'm not interested in pointing out bad magic just for the hell of it. I have plenty of other things to write about. I'm not trying to make fun of this guy. I'm trying to help him. And not in that bullshit way that people are cruel to other people and then imply they're doing it for that person's own good. "I called you a fat cunt because I want you to get healthy!"
Check out some other videos by this guy. They're really not good.
So what? Some guy with some shitty videos on youtube?
Ok, yes, big deal. But apparently no one has told this guy he's not good and now he's planning on a U.S. tour.
Magic, as a whole, does a shitty job of telling people when they're bad. I'm not quite sure what the reason is. I think, in part, it's because it's filled with such delicate egos that no one wants to risk sending someone over the edge with an honest critique. And I also think if you are a decent magician you look at a bad magician and think, "Let this idiot fumble around some more. It makes me look better."
And so we clap them on the back and say, "good job" and they continue to believe they're on the right track and then they're on stage at FISM getting booed and they must be like, "What in the fuck?" (My favorite part of every FISM recap is when we hear about how awful a bunch of the acts were and the performers that get booed off the stage. In a healthy art form, the shitty performers don't get to the biggest stage only to find out they're not good. But magic is filled with such pussies that only when surrounded by 1000 other cretins do magicians feel comfortable voicing a negative opinion.)
And it's really incumbent on magicians to give each other honest feedback. The audience won't. In fact, the more nervous and unsettled you seem to be, the less likely the audience is to point out you're awful. "Hey, that was great, thanks," is often the worst thing an audience will say to you.
So, Matthew, the "neuromagician" behind these videos, take this in the spirit in which it's intended: Your magic needs a lot of work. In fact, much of it is actively bad. Your sleights are super rough and your presentation is just this side of comatose. Look at that coin trick. Your hands never appear empty in the slightest. The coins are clearly visible when they shouldn't be. And when your "invisible" coins turn visible, it's clear you're just reaching for the coin in your palm. There's no magic to it other than what is accomplished by the gimmicks. And that's with a static webcam and no audience to deal with. Your other videos have different, but also significant, performance issues. You need to be aware of these things. I'm not trying to bash you. I just want you to not turn a blind eye to these things for your sake.
You know the best thing to ever happen to my sex-life? It was when I was 18 and in college and I was dating a girl who refused to let me think I was satisfying her when I wasn't. She wasn't rude about it, she would just make sure I was where I needed to be and would take the lead on dictating pace and pressure and the sorts of things guys don't think about because why would they when they can get off by sticking their dick between the mattress and the boxspring? So many women are hesitant to give that type of direction because so many men are too fragile to accept it. So instead they lay back and say, "Hey, that was great, thanks." And the guy walks away thinking he's a tremendous lover. But this girl was having none of that. And I didn't flip out about it. I wasn't like, "How dare you suggest I'm anything other than perfect." I accepted her critique and instruction and happily learned from it. It was only a positive thing. The result was that when I was a young man I was able to interact with women sexually as a much more experienced man would. And now that I am much more experienced, it's like I'm some government-created cyborg designed to distribute orgasms and sent back from the future to quell the 2018 uprising of dissatisfied females. "Come with me if you want to... come...with me." Has this analogy gone off the rails yet? My point is only that for the sake of ourselves as performers and the art as a whole, we need to be better at giving and accepting criticism. It only serves to make you better and stronger.