Child psychology. I don’t haz it :(
Proof: A little three year old hyperactive, kinetic and nuclear plus Chocos energy powered brat was left at home for us to baby sit. Brat had a towering reputation as a nuclear reactor powered tornado who could talk faster than a tape recorder in fast forward. He also was not easy to amuse.
I decided that I would show him magic tricks while his parents darted to the dentist, did a hurried cavity fill and were back before brat could do some real damage to us.
So I took out a pack of cards and made him choose one and then retrieved the card from under a pile of cards. Brat looked totally unimpressed.
After hurriedly consulting the “Basic Magic Tricks: For Dummies”, I showed him the Cut and Restored String, Rising Card and other tricks, created specially for suckers. By the time I had finished the rising card trick, brat had disappeared and I heard my dad howling as brat dropped his precious TV remote to the floor from atop the TV that was on a highly complex show case housing his precious collection of liqueurs and cigars and other male artifacts from around the world.
Then brat picked up a really rare bottle of whiskey and decided to drop it from the liquor cabinet that was above my mother’s precious crystal collection, when my brother M appeared from nowhere and caught my dad in mid-swoon.
Grabbing a one rupee coin after depositing Dad’s lifeless body on the sofa, he showed it to the brat and then coolly put it in his back pocket without making any pretense of hiding his action. Then he showed his empty hands and brat clapped... after he had deposited the bottle of whiskey on the cabinet. He looked mesmerized.
M then took the one rupee coin from his pocket and showed it to brat. Brat was thrilled to bits and totally in awe of the lame ass show. From the corner of my eyes I could see my mom fanning my dad frantically with a newspaper. She was alternatively sniffing at some smelling salts. I was impressed by her multi-tasking abilities but could not leave the “magic show” to convey my appreciation. I just couldn't abandon my brother when he was in danger. There was no way I was going to break brat’s mesmerization which was directly connected to our collective sanity.
Then M told brat to do some magic tricks for us… and he did it and… how!! Brat picks up the coin, throws it behind him and shows us his empty hand. We scrutinize his hands diligently like overly suspicious morons. Then he searches for the coin around the room. I spot the coin under the sofa and quickly push it out onto the carpet. Brat spots it, picks it up and holds it up triumphantly for all of us to see. Every one claps. I don’t remember a family event where all of us have clapped with so much passion and emotion….of various kinds.
By the time brat had learned how to keep the coin on my dad head and retrieve it to the “astonishment” “admiration”, “gasps of disbelief” from his audience (and murderous rage of my dad), his parents were back. We were too exhausted to say bye, but the parents didn’t mind. They had the look of relief of people whose loved ones* are returned safe, after an armed hostage standoff.
By loved ones, I mean us and not the brat.