Archive for June, 2011
Have you ever emptied your pockets at the end of the day only to find you accidentally spent your “cigarette thru quarter” quarter? Sucks doesn’t it? Unfortunately, it is still a problem that we magicians have to be mindful of what coins we spend. It has gotten easier over the years, especially since half dollars are no longer really in use. We know right away that if it’s a half, DON’T SPEND IT! I guess that once coins become completely obsolete that the problem will correct its self. Of course we will still be using our out-of-date halves and silver dollars. See Stuff Magicians Like No. 2.
In the mean time, here are a few steps you can take to help insure that your “unspendable” coins are safe.
1. Take a look at the coins: many times you can tell one of your “unspendable” coins just by looking at them. Telltale signs of cuts or ridges will let you know right off that it’s not to be spent.
2. Feel the coin: if you can’t see one of the “tells” immediately, run your fingers over the coin and you might be able to tell by touch alone.
3. Drop the coin: if worse-comes-to-worse, you can always tell which coins not to spend by sound. Just drop it on a counter top and if you get a nice normal-sounding ring, you’re good to go!
I hope this helps. Oh, and isn’t it great that I got through this entire post without saying “trick coin?”
Be sure to check out my latest article in The Mandala. In this article I offer advice on the necessity of building, strengthening, and constantly using your own original brand.
This issue also features the cover story on The Academy of Magical Arts Awards, and other articles by Shawn McMaster, Lou Serrano, Rich Cowley, Keith Dion, Tony Clark, Paul Romhany, Brent Geris and Tom Burgoon. Also, look out for Turnover, a fictional story crafted by Gavin Inglis that revolves around magic and is expertly illustrated by Hannah McMaster.
My wife rolls her eyes at me every time I point out a font, saying “There’s Neutra” or “Man, I love Rockwell.” Then I give her a hard time whenever she critiques stitching in some embroidery or the quality of a costume. (She’s a seamstress.) Being a designer, I notice the use of many fonts out in the real world, mostly ones that I’ve used before or use on a regular basis. That being said there are a number of fonts that make designers cringe when they see them used.
Here are a few of the usual suspects.
Comic Sans: This font and Papyrus (below) I would say are tied for first place on this list. Comic Sans I’ve seen most with people trying to “spritz up” Word documents, reports and PowerPoint presentations. It would seem that this font feels most at home in Microsoft desktop publishing programs. People like it because it looks different and has a hand-drawn feel to it but really it was only intended to be used for text in cartoons or, ehem, comics. It’s not suited for business use. Check out Ban Comic Sans.
Papyrus: This font’s largest fault is that it is grossly overused. Sure it has a unique exotic look to it, but you see it in more places than the invisible deck! Plus there’s the added benefit of the horrible kerning between uppercase and lowercase letters built right in! Really, you don’t even have to do anything! By the way, according to Wikipedia, even the font’s creator agrees the font has become overused.
Well, there you have it. What fonts do you love or love to hate? Let’s hear it in the comments!