Wednesday, February 28, 2024

As darkness falls good night

 As most of you know I have retired and my son David has taken over the job. He is very nervous about it but I suppose we all were at the start. He has people to meet and places to go for sure.

So the main reason that things came to such a sudden stop was my wife's illness. It is nothing fatal like Cancer thank God, but I have to be htre.

So here is a story which hinges on a remark made by a passenger.(Chuck Feeney)I would love to be a taxi driver if I was starting my life again, you hear so much. It only takes one idea to turn you into a millionaire. Chuck invented duty free shopping and became a billionaire. But unlike most people becoming rich he gave it all away.

Look up the book about him "The billionaire who wasn't by Conor O'Cleary. I stayed in touch with Chuck for more than 10 years after we met. Such a great guy.

So on with the story.

Outside London there was a railway station with a car park. People used to commute to London from there. It was busy enough.

If it was raining there was potholes and with the bad lighting people would walk through the puddles. So one day signs went up giving notice about work starting over the next 4 weekends.

Lighting went in, followed by1/2 the car park having drainage done and a fine tarmac top. The following week the other side was done and lines were painted, so People knew where to park. Then came the parking ticket machines. Cheap enough at the beginning, offenders were clamped but things settled down through the years.

One day when the commuters came they found that the ticket machines were all full, they went into the station master who rang the contact number, no reply. He rang the railway company who rang back to say that they had no record of the car park. Locksmiths were called and the parking meters were drilled out, emptied and new locks fitted. 

Some guy had spotted the situation and took it over for more than 20 years. He bought his house, sent his kids to university, he probably bought a house in Spain as well before walking away.

He did no harm to anyone.

Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Happy St. Valentines day

Did you know that there is a relic to St.Valentine .

It can be found in the Carmelite church on Whitefriar St.

There is a post box inside where you can drop in a note to tell him exactly what you want. "That last fella you sent was no good, he didn't want to work at all"

Anyhoo I should be on my way to Blackpool tomorrow morning, but I have to stay here to take care of my wife. Nothing too severe sciatica.

It has been going on for more than 12 weeks now. All that time with no taxi work. I passed to taxi to my son. But I really do miss the outing every day.

To get back to Blackpool. What's on. 

The Worlds biggest magic convention, thats what's on.

100 +magic dealers selling things to preform the smallest magic trick in your hand to something to make a car vanish and everything in between. Then there are lectures where great magicians share their secrets with keen listeners.

Some magicians are really friendly and Paul Daniels was a great example. I met him a few times and I went to a few of his lectures.

He was coming to Belfast and I sent him an email telling him that I was coming. On arrival Paul was talking to a group of magicians in a corner of the hall. I walked in and Paul shouted over.

"Gentlemen take a look at this fine man who has just come in. Take a good look and you can plainly see that he is very wealthy. After all he won't spend money on good clothes." I don't know where it came from, but I said "Or wigs Paul" to which he replied "Touché". Then I came back with "Toupee"

He ran across and gave me a big hug.

Debbie McGee was at some function as a special guest and she spoke of Pauls death. No matter where we were we drove back home if we did not have another show in the area. Paul would drive and then one day he asked Debbie to drive, then there was headaches, when he finally went into hospital he had a massive brain tumour. But he passed away with no pain.

Magic is so accessible now with the internet.

Look for

Bill Malone. Harry Cardines Santos, Harry Lorayne, Eugene Burger.

All of them do DVDs and soon you will have your party piece.

My favourite one is to take a €5 note and in full view fold it once, twice, three times and then blow on it and it has turned into a €50.

I have a deck of cards and all the faces are different but the backs are the same. A prediction card in an envelope is placed on the table.

I deal face down cards until the person says stop.

Then I deal the other cards from the bottom face up.

There is a prediction in this envelope, I know that it is right.

You open up the envelope and it doesn't match. Front or back.

After a pause you turn the chosen cards over and they match. Front and back.

Rene Levant was in Blackpool and after the show I saw him with a group of people. He was standing at the top of a small curved staircase, near the edge. I went over to congratulate him on his performance. I was waiting for my moment when someone came over from the other side. He stepped back and came tumbling down the stairs. (He only had one arm)I remembered that before I grabbed him in a bear hug and shot back down the stairs backwards with him in my arms.

Was he grateful ? He roared at me in Spanish and he and they all thought that I had pushed him down the stairs. In many ways looking back there is a saying.

No good deed goes unpunished.

Perhaps next year