So, when the notice came on TheMagicCafe'.com about a fellow mage who was losing his eyesight and who needed a few Chicago magicians to "handle a few contracts for weddings for me because I'm losing my eyesight," I felt it was time to step up to the plate and help out. Not for the money, but because I knew that he had an idea - an idea that I could help him with. He had left his job with the local power company only four years ago, leaving his medical benefits behind and, suddenly WHAM! Cataracts in both eyes and, he discovered, a genetic predisposition to detached retinas. After five operations, complications in one eye left him legally blind in that one and the other one is fading, slowly. He knew he couldn't continue as a performer much longer and asked some of the people on the board for help.
Over the years, my work as a magician, hypnotist and mentalist has allowed me to travel to places that I never would have seen, otherwise. I have performed at resorts on exotic islands in the Caribbean, like St. Lucia and Turks & Caicos (which, incidentally has some of the finest scuba diving and snorkeling of anywhere in the world), to the great casinos of Las Vegas, the grand hotels of New York, Miami, Los Angeles, New Orleans, Atlanta and many other cities. And it has allowed me to meet some of my childhood heroes as well - Buster Crabbe, who played both Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers in the movies, Johnny Weismueller, who played Tarzan, Robert Heinlein, Dean of American Science Fiction Writers, W. Clement Stone, the Motivation Guru, BB King, legendary Blues Man, Oprah Winfrey, the original cast of Star Trek and many more.
I've been very fortunate in my performing life and, when we got to talking, this magician and I, his idea kind of sprouted, I think. I hope so. His website is located at http://www.amagicalwedding.com and should be updated shortly to include the agency functions.
So I will be working with him on some of these contracts in the future, it seems. Not for the money so much as to help a friend and to put forward something that I have believed in since I was very young - the concept of the Chinese Obligation: When someone helps you out, you are then obligated to help ten others.
In case you hadn't noticed, the Raconteurs is a rather sizable group..... !
Lee Darrow, C.H.