I kicked off the month by flying to Portland to do another Penguin magic expo.  That same night I rode with Paul Richards and his wife Wendy into Seattle so we could do it all again the next morning.  It was tiring, but lucrative and well worth it.  I’ve lectured and sold things at my booth hundreds of times and I learn something each time.

Once home the next weekend I drove to Austin, Tx.  That Friday night I dined with two of my favorite relatives, my cousins Rodger and Alex.  They are always fun to hang out with.  The following I hung out with my friend Brian Brushwood the host of Scam School.  Brian rounded up his film crew and we proceeded to the Handlebar to film five episodes; look for those episodes over the next few months on YouTube.  Afterwards we all went to a speakeasy called the Floppy Dish Repair Center.  Brushwood knew the password to get us in and we had a couple of drinks before meeting up with my cousins at a restaurant called Moonshine with excellent menu items.

The next day I visited UMLAUF Sculpture garden.  The garden and sculptures were very nice.  I grabbed some grub from a food truck and went hiking.  I drove back to Dallas that night after stopping at the Collin Street Bakery (home of the original fruitcake) for a little snack.

That Monday morning I drove to the headquarters of Dude Perfect in Frisco.  I shot an episode with Tyler and Garrett where I taught Tyler some magic to help him put on a great show as a Hibachi chef.  The Dude Perfect show features trick shots in sports and has over 17 million followers on YouTube.  The five stars of the show are doing well.  This show that I helped with is part of a series that will air on Nickelodean.  Look for it in about one month.  Set your DVR.  It was a fun shoot with the guys and camera crew and I hope to return to work with them again.

Now that things have calmed down I have finished revising Bamboozlers 3 and just sent it off to have reprinted.  Demand for it has been high since it’s not been available the past six months.  I’m soon to run out of my Winning Spinning Nickels and have begun the process to have them back in stock.  Each project takes time and money.  I’m slowly compiling Bamboozlers 4 and hope to lay it out soon.  My birthday is around the corner and I’ve learned that as you get older life only speeds up.

I did a Penguin Expo in Austin and Dallas this month.   The crowds were great in both cities.  It was nice to see so many friends in attendance. It was a pleasure working alongside some of the best in the business which was Mark Mason, Paul Richards, Gregory Wilson and the guys from Penguin Magic.  We each gave mini lectures and demonstrated our wares at our dealer booths.  I hope to do more of these soon.  Some of my magic was featured in Penguin Monthly too.

I was also a guest performer and lecturer at the Winter Carnival of Magic in Pigeon Forge, Tn.  It was a 3 day weekend full of magic.  Pigeon Forge is an interesting town.  It’s like Branson.  The buildings and attractions were unique.  The convention was a lot of fun and one of the highlights was visiting the home of a millionaire who refurbished old gaming machines for a living (like the old fortune teller machines).  The main party area where he entertained the guests looked like a speakeasy with an old authentic Chicago wood bar inside, an ice cream parlor, billiard table from the 18th century and more.

I’ve had swarms of shows from many of my clients to keep me busy as well.  When not performing I’ve been spending lots of time playing poker.  I attended the Texas Pinball Festival for the third time.  I had a great time despite my ulcer and met Sam Jones who played Flash Gordon in the cult classic 1980 film.  Basically, I had fun… and fun is the best thing to have.

In February Penguin Magic flew me to Columbus, OH to do a show one night and a live online lecture the next night.  The show went really well.  This was my second time lecturing for Penguin Magic which apparently is not commonplace.  My first lecture broke records for them.  Firstly, I broke the record for most magic taught per minute by teaching 20 effects over the course of two hours.  Secondly, they have a shortlist of products on their site that only have 5-star reviews.  My first lecture with them holds #1 with fifty 5-star reviews.  I guess it’s something I should be proud of.  The second go around I thought I would just perform material from my Bamboozlers book series by featuring bar bets, puzzles, jokes and impromptu magic.  This time I did over 40 effects and the good reviews are rolling in.

I had many shows across Texas in February but my most time consuming shows were two that I did for the North Texas Specialty Physicians.  For each show I entertained a group of 200 doctors. I incorporated my magic to discuss key topics like MACRA and RAFs and the CHIP Reauthorization Act.  Both gigs were rewarding and challenging.  The last one was held at the CR Smith Museum near DFW airport.  The Radiation Oncologist who helped cure my Cancer in 1993 Dr. Timothy Nichols was in attendance during my second show and had nothing but nice to things to say.  I’m a lucky guy on many levels.

 

I kicked off this year performing at the Phoenix House once again on January 1st.  It’s an awesome nonprofit organization that rehabilitates teens with drug & alcohol problems.  It’s always a pleasure performing for this group.  That night I had dinner with some good friends.

January was almost as busy as December which is typically my best month.  One gig took me to Oklahoma to work at the Choctaw Casino. Many regular clients booked my services again across Texas.  I’m so lucky that I make a good living doing what I love.  Seeing many of my clients is like seeing family.  One new client flew me to Palm Beach, Florida to work at the prestigious Bath & Tennis Club for his wife’s birthday. See a pic of the room I worked above.

I was recently in a small car wreck.  While sitting at a red light a car smashed into me.  I’m okay but it damaged the front and rear of of my car.  The fiberglass was cracked.  It couldn’t be repaired until January 31st.  I should get my car back Feb. 21st.  I miss my Vette.

I had a small tour across Florida lined up for the middle of January.  I was excited and packed and ready to go.  On the way to the airport I learned that my flight was cancelled due to fog.  Not delayed… cancelled.  I scrambled to find another flight and since I was booking last minute I found nothing available.  Then I tried to book a flight out the next day to go onto stop number two.  All flights were outrageously expensive.  Disappointingly I had to cancel the tour.  It was only 4 stops and I couldn’t make at least two of them.  Plus there were other factors that prohibited this trip.

With the car wreck and cancelled tour you’d think it was a bad month.  However, in January I took a mini-vacation to California.  I had an awesome time at the Magic Castle.  I also went to the Griffith Observatory which is amazing (seen above).  I went to the beach, walked Hollywood Blvd, visited Amoeba Music, toured Universal Studios, ate well and really enjoyed my time there.

Recently I’ve been playing lots of tournament Texas Hold-em poker. See a recent magic video I made that’s related to poker.  Enjoy!

 

 

I was happy to see the back-end of 2016.  I got divorced earlier in 2016, had health issues, lost two family members and had more stress than I can ever remember.  However December was great!  I did 20 shows for mostly repeat clients.  I made a few new clients as well.  One client had me changing folks $1 bills into $100 bills and letting them keep them.  I’m eating better, sleeping better and working out regularly.  In 2017 I hope to be the best version of me.  2016 was rough but I think it has made me much stronger and wiser.

In December of 2015 I had molds made for my new Ominous Deck.  In May I thought I had the finished product when 1000 of them showed up on my doorstep.  Unfortunately their were flaws with all of them so I scrapped them and had them remake the mold.  In late December of 2016, almost a year to the day, I received my order of 1000 units in and they look great!  They have been flying out my door and getting rave reviews from my colleagues.

December was also nice to see much of my family.  I had a nice Christmas with my mom, step-father, sisters and nephews.  See a pic of me and my sisters on the left.  I also had a nice Christmas with my dad’s side of the family.  For that Christmas we chose to adopt a family to buy them things they really needed.  That felt better than giving ourselves things we really didn’t need.  I also helped my father celebrate his birthday.

In late December I attended a small ComiCon in Dallas.  It was fun to see folks in their Cosplay outfits and cross paths with a few friends. The vendor booths were fun to peruse through. I did a little magic there for Michael Rooker of Walking Dead fame.  He was very cool and receptive to my magic.

 

 

papaThis month has been chaotic.  Prepping and planning for a three week tour in a foreign land is never easy but this trip was especially hard.  While gone I lost a major gig, had some personal issues and I lost my grandfather.  It was the first family funeral I have ever missed.  His name was Bill and he was a loving and giving man. Because of the stress I’ve not slept well and lost lots of weight.  I’m being brutally honest.  Normally I sugarcoat things here in my blog and only share my ups.  I think some will find it redeeming to know that I also have my downs.  I am learning to cope with all of my recent heartaches.

djt-germanyI flew out of DFW on Halloween day and arrived in Frankfurt, Germany on Nov. 1st.  I rented a car and drove to Antwerp, Belgium.  I lectured there the next night and had a great turnout. From there I moved on to The Netherlands where I lectured for Dynamite Magic.  It was a great shop and turnout and I was excited since it was my first time visiting this country.  I then journeyed onto Hamburg to lecture at the wonderful venue that the Magic Circle has there.  I then stopped and lectured in the towns of Wuppertal, Oldenberg, Berlin, Hannover, Haldensblen, Nurnberg and Frankfurt.  Each stop was fun seeing old friends and making new ones.  However, my mind was mostly on my problems back at home which made it hard to enjoy my downtime when not working.

Thpraguee highlight of the trip was Prague in the Czech Republic.  I had always heard it was a beautiful city but it surpassed my expectations.  I hope to return there one day.  Google pics of the city to see what I mean.  I’ve included a cool video of the Franz Kafka statue below.  I had one of the best burgers I’ve ever eaten there. Also, one of the best true Italian pizzas I’ve ever had.  My host there Damian made my stay really fun.  The lecture had a huge turnout.  When a lecturer comes to Prague it is a big event and they make you feel like a celebrity.

On this trip I flew 5000 miles there and 5000 back.  I drove about 2000 miles across Belgium, The Netherlands and Germany.  My train ride from Germany to Prague and back had many breathtaking moments.  I made good money along the way.  After this trip I can proudly say that I have performed in 30 countries.  I don’t plan to do any big tours like this again in the near future.  I’d like to focus on shows and projects at home.

Once home I had two nice Thanksgiving meals with both sides of my family.  I was reminded that I do have much to be thankful for and not to dwell on my losses but rather my blessings in life.

This has been a year of self-discovery for me.  I’m 46 years old and alone for the first time in my life. I’m starting to learn who I am at my core and what I really want.  It’s been a tough adjustment but I know I’ll be a better and stronger version of Diamond Jim very soon.  Wish me luck.

 

clipperI’m busier than a shoe salesman on a centipede farm.  Another of my Scam School episodes aired in September.  See it above.  In September I did 8 private events, many for repeat clients but mainly stayed busy prepping for my West coast / Canadian tour. I flew to Sacramento on Wednesday Sept. 14th and lectured there that night.  From there I continued onto Seattle (where I missed my lecture…. that was a first for me).  I booked a flight out the wrong airport but then luckily got the last seat on the Clipper ferry.  Unfortunately, the ferry was over an hour late which made me extremely late.  Seattle had me eating humble pie and cost me plenty!  From there I went onto Victoria, BC where I vacationed for a couple of days before lecturing there.  I love Victoria and it’s breath-taking scenery!  I especially enjoyed hanging with Dave Atwood.  Dave’s an amazing magician, guy and now friend for life.

planeAfter BC I went on to Calgary, then Winnipeg, then Edmonton and then back to Mission, BC.  I hit many Canadian provinces and made several new friends.  Mike Norden’s man cave and home were amazing!  I continued my tour into the US stopping in Portland and Eugene, Oregon.  I was happy to return to Dave’s Killer Magic Shop for a standing room only crowd once again!  My last stop was in Boise, ID were I spent the day with the kind and talented Kipp Sherry before giving my lecture that night.  Idaho now makes the 46th state that I have performed in.  I hope to knock out the last four in 2017.  Over the fourteen day period I was on 15 planes.

djt-hymanIt was nice to meet the famous Ray Hyman in Eugene, Oregon.  He and I shared the famous mutual friend Martin Gardner. Ray was lucky to know him much longer than I.  Mr. Hyman is full of vim and vigor for a man his age and I hope I am the same one day.

It’s now approaching the middle of October and I realized that I needed to update my blog now or it might not get done until the end of the year.  In October I currently have 17 private events but I have mainly been booking airfare, a car, train tickets and such for my upcoming tour of Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany and the Czech Republic.  I’ve got 10 stops on this tour that will take 3 weeks to complete.  I’m looking forward to returning to Europe.  On this trip I will knock out two new countries I have yet to visit.  I had no idea when choosing this profession that I’d be a globe-trotter.

djt-vegas-2016Whew!  These last two months have flown by.  Much in my life has changed.  I’m recently divorced after being with the same girl for 28 years.  I have moved to another city in Texas and have sold off many things that I really didn’t need.  Don’t feel sorry for either of us.  It was time and luckily for us it was amicable. I wish my ex the best in life and have nothing bad to say about her.

My work schedule has been hectic too.  I’ve been driving across the state of Texas for gigs and flying to and fro other states as well.  At the recommendation of my doctor I saw a cardiologist and after a few tests learned that I have an arrhythmia. Apparently, most people do and the doc says I will be fine without treatment or pills.

smithsMy friends the Smiths from Derby, England came to see me in Texas.  I’ve had the pleasure of staying in their home during a couple of my UK visits. I showed them some of Dallas and much of Fort Worth.  I made sure they had some authentic TexMex and barbeque.  The also tried other things like fried jalepeno poppers and funnel cakes.  One day we all went to the Wild West Show in Fort Worth and they really enjoyed it.  They were impressed with the size of our food portions, trucks, TVs and things like OnStar.  They loved shopping in our supermarkets to find treats that they can’t get back at home. I had a blast with them and can’t wait to see them all again.  See them above.

IMG_3670Beyond gigs my social calendar has been full up with dinners with friends and family.  One night my buddy Jared picked me up in a Lamborghini to attend a car meet.  From time to time I’ll get a sample from China for my upcoming Ominous Deck to approve and I think we’ve finally worked out the kinks.  It should be out soon.  The big happening in August was attending Magic Live in Vegas!

DJT-Copperfield-2016This was my third Magic Live to attend and it was phenomenal.  It was great to see so many friends, make new ones, buy new toys and routines.  This was their 25th anniversary and almost every magician who was ever on the cover was there plus 1400 more of us.  The talks and performances were top notch.  Just walking around the convention made me money by IMG_3668booking more dates and selling more of my products. Getting an invite to Chris Kenner’s party and hanging out with several AGT contestants and David Copperfield was an unexpected surprise!

I used Uber for the first time while there and each of the three times was fast, reliable and affordable.  I gave Lost Wages a little money in the slot machines and at the blackjack tables but ultimately I came out way ahead with knowledge, experiences, new friends and wisdom.  Plus I can’t wait to try the new routines I learned there.  Currently I’m gearing up for a Canadian tour.

See one of my latest episodes of Scam School below.  Life is short.  Make it fun!!

 

blueI have had many shows across the state and lectured outside of Texas in Albuquerque-New Mexico, Las Vegas-Nevada, and Denver-Colorado.  Each of the stops were worthwhile.  I’ve done lots of private parties and continue to work Boston’s in McKinney on Wednesday and Friday nights. I’ve had fun gigs at places like the Frontiers of Flight Museum, Jackson’s Pottery, the Hageman Reserve and for the Crow family.

spider2Outside of performing and lecturing I have also taken on a new student.  He is a lawyer and happy to learn and excited.  Admittedly I have just as much fun teaching him.  Also I am releasing a new effect called the Ominous Deck (seen above).  It’s a project that has been a year or more in the making.  I received 1000 of them in only to learn they had defects.  So the molds are being remade now and I’ll have the finished product in soon.  You can pre-order it now!

sspaolettiPlus I returned to Austin to film more episodes of Scam School.  We try to film 4-5 episodes, but due to bad weather, we had to call it an early night.  I got 3 in the can.  See the first of my 3 below.  I also took my buddy Alan Paoletti with me so he could experience the world of Scam School and witness the shoot; see a pic of all three of us above.  He will star in his own episode soon.  Look for it on the Scam School YouTube channel.

 

IMG_3012These last two months have kept me busy performing and working on projects.  I’ve done lots of parties around the metroplex.  Some have been company events, birthday parties, and many graduation parties.  People young and old seem to appreciate my style of magic.  Over 30 years of performing professionally I’ve mastered what works well in different scenarios.

march2016gradAs far as projects go I’ve just re-released my 7 Lucky Dice and a spin-off product called Forcing Die.  These dice are for magicians and their mentalism routines.  The product has been well received globally and some of the biggest names in the business have ordered from me.

I’m also working on a secret project that hopefully will come out in May.  I think it will be big!  It’s my first time commissioning molds made and having something mass produced in China.  I have had dies made for certain products but this is on a bigger scale.  Wish me luck and look for it soon.

IMG_3009My friend Jared Guynes rented out Cowboy Stadium on March 12th and around 2300 people participated in the world’s largest Nerf gun battle.  I was one of them.  It’s official and I’m in the Guinness Book of World Records now.  It’s kind of a big deal; kind of like being a doctor.  Jared was also kind enough to hire me to work the pre-party where I saw my friends Pam and Miki the Monkey.  Life is never dull.

IMG_3010The following weekend I attended the Texas Pinball festival in Frisco, TX.  It was thrilling to play the several hundred games on free play that weekend.  Plus I got to see many friends and make some new ones.  My favorite arcade game Omega Race was there and I hogged the machine as much as possible.

In April I turned another year older and have been purging.  I’ve sold my Sherlock Holmes collection, my Egyptian art collection, my magic book collection, plus some other items.  They say what you own ends up owning you.  I’m trying to simplify some things and reboot. More soon.

djt-feb3I performed many private events this month across the metroplex.  I’ve performed in mansions, country clubs, libraries, grand ballrooms, etc. One gig took me to someone’s home where I saw friends I hadn’t seen in years.  I was so glad these old friends got to see me do my stand-up comedy magic for adults; plus it was great catching up.  This month I received Bamboozlers One from the printer in China.  The second printing had sold out so now I have the third printing in stock again.  These little books continue to do amazingly well.  I had no idea when beginning this series in 2008 that it would become what I am best known for.

The big happening this month was my lecture tour across 7 states and 10 cities.  I drove from Dallas to Springfield, Missouri on Feb. 9th.  From there to Kansas City, MO to lecture once again at US Toy and hang out with my friend Todd Lamanske who is an awesome magician in his own Glass-Balance-DJTright.  David Sandy welcomed me to his home with a little party and gave me a tour of his cool home and magic collection.  From there I went to Little Rock, Arkansas and then drove home to do two shows that Saturday.

Sunday the 14th I left so I could be in Louisville, KY the following night.  Attendance was poor due to snow everywhere but I had fun with those that did show up.  Then I made me way to Springfield, IL, then to Big Guy’s magic shop in Pewaukee, WI where it was really cold.  The next night I was in Tinley Park, IL.  I drove 13 hours home the next day straight to sleep in my own bed.  That Saturday I had two shows as well.

fireSunday the 21st I lectured for my pals in Dallas and had a party at the house afterward.  The next day I was in Lake Charles, LA where I saw my buddy Chip Romero, who is a wonderful cruise ship magician, and who has one of the most impressive magic collections on the planet.  The next night I lectured in Austin, TX and made my way home again the next day.  All in all I drove over 5000 miles across the US. That week I had a few more shows to finish off the month.  So life is good and work is plentiful.  The problem is I have so many projects I’d like to complete but I have little time and motivation.  Having said that I do have an exciting new product that should come out next month. I can’t wait for the magic world to see it!

2016 started off on the right foot again by performing for the teenagers at Phoenix House on Jan. 1st.  These kids are going through tough times and it was fun to know I was bringing them some wonder, if only for a little while.  Jan. 3rd I flew to LA and attended the Magic Castle shows that evening.  On the 4th my work week there began doing three shows a night in the Parlour of Prestidigitation.  This was my ninth time working the Castle.  Once again I was working with the best of the best.

irene-djt-2016It was a fun work week and I enjoyed meeting British magician Pete Firman.  Pete witnessed me dueling with drunks during one of my performances and it was a hoot!  These sort of  occurrences make me a better magician.  Irene Larsen, wife of the former Bill Larsen (who founded the Castle with his brother Milt) had wonderful things to say about my show and my humor.  High praise from Mrs. Larsen (seen on the right), who’s seen thousands of magicians, meant the world to me.  The highlight was hanging out with friends that week.

texas-motor-cars-2016Once home Jan. 12th I had one day of rest before doing five shows that week. Over the next two weeks I had several shows.  I did a stand-up show in the home of a billionaire for several teenagers and their parents on Jan. 30th. On Jan. 31st I had an awesome gig at Texas Motorcars in Addison, Tx.  See a candid shot from the Texas Motor Cars (on the left).  See me performing a fun routine Sunday Jan. 31st by (clicking here). People pay me to have fun!!

The big news this month was the release of my 10th instructional magic DVD titled Telekinetic.  It’s based on an effect I dreamed up as a teenager but with lots of nuances and modifications.  It’s definitely one of the more visual pieces of magic that I do.  See the trailer at the top of this post.  2016 marks 40 years practicing magic and 30 years performing it professionally.  To celebrate I’ve released my 10 DVD Box Set that features over 50 effects.  It’s probably the best deal on my website for those who are not familiar with my magic.