Customizing Your Every Day Carry Magic

Dear Friends,
Our guest contributor this month is Tim “Santiago” Converse. Tim has been studying the art and history of magic for over 30 years. He is an instructor for the McBride Magic & Mystery School, and teaches magic online through a new after school educational program called Veeko. 

Every Day Carry Magic
This is a topic that has been on my mind a lot lately. We just enjoyed an episode of Mystery School Monday on this very topic, where a lot of great information and useful advice was shared. I thought I would share a story of my own that might be of interest. 
When we think of Every Day Carry (EDC) magic, we are usually thinking in terms of the things we always have with us that are general purpose – they will play anywhere, anytime, for any audience. But I like to think in advance when I go somewhere, and make additions or substitutions to my current EDC magic as well. 
If you know me at all, then you know that I visit Disneyland frequently, up to two to three times a year! I love going to amusement parks, and I’m a roller coaster enthusiast. Disneyland has my all time favorite – Space Mountain. When I go, I always make sure to have two things on me that are in addition to my usual EDC.
Customizing Your Props
First, a D’lite, usually a bright white one, but I also have used a green one for a very specific reason. I have found that when I am standing in line for a “dark ride” – any ride that has a queue line in the dark and runs in the dark, like the Haunted Mansion or Tower of Terror – my D’lite is a perfect way to calm a child who might be scared. Some parents bring small children on such rides because they want to go, even if their child doesn’t. 
The child can become frightened pretty easily. A D’lite immediately gets their attention and it gives me a great opportunity to open a conversation with them. That conversation is always along the lines of, “I used to get scared on this ride too, but now it’s a lot of fun. Would you like to have a little bit of my courage to get on the ride?”
My courage is, of course, the light. If they give me permission, I gently bring the light closer to their heart, and without touching them, toss it to them in a way that suggests that the light went into their heart. Every time I have done this the child has perked up, smiled, and calmed right down, and the parents are usually very grateful as well!
This is a magic moment that helps them relax and enjoy where they are and what they are doing. Also, it usually makes them a bit more chatty with me while we’re in line, which makes them feel like this is a normal experience after all. And why a green D’lite? Because Tinkerbell is green! So with just a small modification to anything I say, I can reference Tinkerbell, and it becomes that much more Disney!
Magic Bubbles
The second thing I bring with me is a small supply of clear glass marbles. I’m sure you can see where this is going!

Throughout the park there are many vendors who sell “magic bubble wands.” They usually have some character on them, run on batteries, have a bubble solution reservoir, and can put large amounts of bubbles in the air. What an opportunity!
On my most recent trip to Disneyland, I had the absolute most perfect situation. I was standing outside a ride waiting for my wife to return, and standing across from me was a young girl, maybe around five or six years old, playing with a bubble wand while her mom was busy on her phone. The conditions were exactly right, so while she was looking directly at me I reached up and “caught a bubble”! Her beautiful brown eyes went absolutely wide and she smiled and laughed!
Normally I would have offered up the “bubble” to her as a gift, but since her mom didn’t see me do it, and we were just far enough apart to make it awkward if I walked over to her, I didn’t.  Also, of course, in light of things like Covid, there still is a certain amount of caution taking place, even in Disneyland. Regardless, that little girl will remember the experience, perhaps for the rest of her life, because she saw something magical she had never even dreamed of!
Be Prepared to Create Magic Moments
In light of this discussion about EDC magic, I urge you to think beyond the “always playable anywhere” set. Consider where you’re going and what other effects you might have that would fit your EDC kit. If you do, you might just find yourself perfectly placed to create even greater magical moments than Mickey himself!

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