Spending Your Time

Greetings All…

“I cannot give you the formula for success, but I can give you the formula for failure, which is – try to please everybody.”
Herbert Swope

Teller said to me, many years ago, “Jeff, it doesn’t matter if the audience likes you during your show, as long as they’re standing up and cheering at the end.” A few years later, at Mystery School, Max Maven was on a panel discussion, and the topic of “likeability” came up. Max said that there is a frequently heard statement in show business, which is that “you have to make them like you.” Max disagrees with this somewhat, and thinks really what you have to do is to make them want to spend time with you. Granted, he says, making them like you will accomplish this, but there are other ways to accomplish the same goal.

One of the most valuable things we have in life is our time…. and how we spend it. Ask yourself a few questions:

  • If you could spend time in the company of someone you admire, who would it be, and why?
  • Who are your role models, and what can you do to learn the secrets of their success?
  • What is your purpose in life? What is your intention for your art? What steps are you taking to realize your goals?

Eighteen years ago, I asked myself these questions. Here are the steps I took. When I made a list of the most influential magical thinkers, the names Eugene Burger and Max Maven were at the top of the list. I wanted to study with these men. The next step was to create a place where we could meet. We called this place Mystery School. For a few days, we shared our stories, our intentions, and yes, great magic, too.

Spending time with inspiring teachers is one of the great pleasures in my life. It is a pleasure to be able to open our Mystery School to you. When the student is ready, the teacher appears. I want to thank the many teachers and faculty at the Magic & Mystery School for all the gifts that they have given to me and to our students.

I hope to see many of you this Fall at our Magic & Meaning conference. It would be my great pleasure to spend my time with you! If you’d like to see what we’re up to, go here: http://www.magicalwisdom.com/events/view/392

Onstage photo by Louis-Olivier Ostrowsky

Yours in greater magic,
Jeff McBride


Hi, folks! Jeff is just back from Italy, from whence I’ve been hearing lots of excitement over his show, lecture and workshop. Which reminds me — if your group, or a group you know, is interested in having Jeff come lecture, perform and conduct a workshop in your area — let me know! We’ve gone out of our way to take away as much of the financial risk as possible of having Jeff come out for these events — and we want to do as many as we can. The two day Show/Lecture and workshop is really a one-man mini-convention, brought to your location with very little financial outlay, and a chance to show a good profit for your club as well.

While Jeff has been traveling, I’ve been moving my home and office to El Sobrante, CA — just across the bay from San Francisco and Marin County. We’re on a sunny hillside and in a much larger house than before — and excited about all the new possibilities of being close to not only Silicon Valley, but Berkeley and San Francsico. It’s an exciting area, filled with vibrant, exciting – and especially magical people! My new phone number is (415) 889-9491. Of course, the Vegas number still works as well (forwarding to the new cell phone number). If you’re a magician in the East Bay area, I’d love to hear from you by e-mail to tobias@yourmagic.com.

Can you believe it’s September already? The summer flew by almost before I noticed! With the fall comes Magic & Meaning in late October, and I just wanted to let you know that if you wanted to come, but haven’t registered yet, we do still have a few slots available, and, when we last checked, the Marriott still had rooms available at reduced rates. October is a great time to visit Las Vegas — and right now, Vegas is particularly affordable. Sign up now at MagicalWisdom.com. If you’re not quite convinced you want to do it…go to the web site anyway and read all about it, including what your friends and acquaintances who HAVE attended have to say. Watch some of the PEP talks…and at least you’ll get to feel like you’ve participated in one of the magic world’s top events!

I hope this finds you gearing up for a happy and prosperous fall season. We look forward to being in touch again soon!

Tobias Beckwith

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