Posted by: lucksmith | April 27, 2012

The Jungle

So often this mood would come to Ona, in the night-time, when something wakened her; she would lie, afraid of the beating of her own heart, fronting the blood-red eyes of the old primeval terror of life. Once she cried aloud, and woke Jurgis, who was tired and cross. After that she learned to weep silently — their moods so seldom came together now! It was as if their hopes were buried in separate graves.

– Upton Sinclair

Posted by: lucksmith | February 27, 2012

Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

Posted by: lucksmith | February 5, 2012


I have lost all fixed points. I am adrift. There is no direction home.

So without book or compass, without currency or time, without the means or motivation, I must produce a re-birth. A transformation that will be witnessed by only me.

Stravaigin and smuairean.

In the last year, I saw my grandmothers ashes. I failed a young friend when he needed me most. I asked The Pig to handle a family problem for me, and she has literal scars to show for it. She hid that from me while I finished my degree. I have a lot of guilt, accordingly.

I also met my estranged family, and tried to adapt to new relatives. I rescued the old ones a few times. I moved to another country, and I know it damaged my relationships, permanently. All of them. I moved out of the flat I took ten years to pay off, and put everything I owned in storage. I did it so I could return to Cambridge, and that too seems like it might slip through my fingers.

Yesterday, I even broke a tooth. All this devastation comes with some successes too.

The nine of diamonds published a magic trick of mine in a Society of American Magicians magazine. They are also finishing their book, with a few of my tricks, and many of their elegant creations. I am proud of them, but mindful they got neglected in the fallout too.

I got some press for my work in another subject, and I am doing much public speaking about it. More importantly, that opportunity to speak allows me to affect the change I desire in my chosen profession. The media is a blunt tool, but a powerful one. Now if I can only replicate a few carefully chosen thoughts and approaches..

So my outward success is uniquely balanced by the devastation in my personal life. “I am Grimaldi.” Now, more than ever before.

I guess if you are going to win some victories for humanity, you need to crack a few teeth. To those of you damaged along the way, I owe you a lot of laughter in the sun. If you’ll forgive me, I won’t fail you.

Posted by: lucksmith | November 22, 2011


Suddenly it all makes sense.

The only way to win is not to play.

It’s my old favourite game…Zugzwang!

How about a nice game of global de-escalation?

Maybe a nice cup of tea, too. And clowns. We need more clowns.

Posted by: lucksmith | November 21, 2011


This episode brought to you by bearded ladies and drunken mermaids.

Posted by: lucksmith | November 21, 2011

To much obsession with how, and not enough with why.

Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity.” – Horace Mann

Posted by: lucksmith | November 20, 2011


My head hurts. I put a thief in my mouth to steal my brain, as they say. Sometimes you need not to think.

I used to write a lot here, and be content enough. Now I am on tilt.

I am busy, working both at work, and at home when I should let myself have some time off. When I do take some time to myself, I end up playing with my work.

The timing of things is such that I should seek some publicity.

Yet, I don’t really want it. I know it’s a boon for my future career, but I’d prefer to let the work speak for itself. I don’t need for everyone to know *my* name, just so that the right people know what I know. I only need to share what I know with the ones who could actually make a difference.

The ones who stare deeply into the truth and share the measure of the horror with me.

Later, we’ll laugh about it. Once the fixing gets started.

We’ll know that we knew before anyone else. The rest of them will soon claim they always knew. They already do in my experience.

Have a saffron gin and tonic or a lavender martini. Then take some small comfort in your fortune.

Fortune# Your future will contain many books and much time for reading.

That’s a promise and a radical kindness.

Because book tokens go a really long way in our world.

Posted by: lucksmith | September 18, 2011

The soul and the soil.

Not bad for an amphibian.

Posted by: lucksmith | August 6, 2011

On Bendini

My friend Bendini is in Edinburgh performing for one week only. Unfortunately this bizarre gentleman has failed to provide me with a time or a venue (I’m chiding you gentle sir!).

I will update this post when he does get in touch, and tell you a bit more about him. He is truly a variety performer, with a mix of contortion, sword-swallowing, sideshow, juggling, acrobalance, and showmanship.

In the meantime, he and I have spent some happy hours discussing great acts from history. He introduced me to this sideshow character who I had never heard of: Hadji Ali. I must say it has been a long time since I saw such originality, and an act I think could not be performed in this era.

Take the time to make yourself a tea or coffee before watching this video. I promise it will be worth the time taken to sit down and enjoy it. Perhaps in a future post we can track down some history on this strange and titanic act of physical control. If you already have some, then point it out in comments below. I’d love to hear more!

What is inside this man?

Posted by: lucksmith | July 26, 2011

Inside the outsiders

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