by Robbin Murphy on July 28, 1997 at 14:18:47:
In Reply to: Re: The aesthetics of electromechanical failure posted by Simon Biggs on July 28, 1997 at 14:17:40:
>For me one of the most alluring and powerful aspects of technology is that
>it can create what appears to be magic. Magic is a wonderful thing...but it
>only works if people cannot see how it is done.
I wrote this last December: It seems to apply:
MAGIC is big business these days and David Copperfield is
the Bill Gates of sorcerers. When our friend the mystery
writer Carol O'Connell invited us to preview the magician's
new Broadway show, "Dreams and Nightmares," we put down our
new paperback version of "The Road Ahead 96" and went along
to see some real trickery in action.
We admit we're gullible. Even if we hadn't had a knowledgeable
guide to clue us into the workings of the technology we would
have been satisfied to believe Copperfield really did saw
himself in half. Knowing how a trick is done is like using DOS
-- some people always have to know the code, not us. What's
amazing is the window of belief a good magician is able to
create, especially in a crowd of suspicion-prone New Yorkers.
Magic is nonsense that seems to makes sense, at least for the
time you're part of a captive audience. The nightmare begins
when you realize you can never leave.
After the show we wandered around Times Square and watched
workmen hoisting a sign onto the facade of the new Disney store
on 42nd Street. As Mickey and his friends took their places
above where less acceptable (but more human) characters once
stood the air abruptly turned frigid and we realized we weren't
protected from the oncoming cold. We hailed a cab and sped off
for warmer climates.
murph the surf
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