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Word pundits call these fears phobia from the Greek phobia, the common word for “fear” via the notion of “panic, fright.” (Dictionary.com)
Fear of spiders is called arachnophobia, fear of confined spaces, claustrophobia, and fear of the number 13 (believe it or not there is such kind of fear), triskaidekaphobia.
For many magicians in the Philippines, the number one phobia is detection. I call it detectionaphobia.
Okay, I just made that up. You won’t find the word in the dictionary or any reference book, but you get the point.
Because magicians have an overwhelming fear of getting caught while performing, say, a sleight-of-hand, they move fast from stage to stage of their performance, execute their sleight at Guinness Book of Records speed, hoping to outpace people’s eyes.
The result is that they get away with the sleight but at the expense of leaving their audience confounded.
“What the heck was that all about?” people who watch them mutter to themselves as they go away. The performance confused them, and the magic failed to amaze them.
This myth may hold a sliver of truth. Many magicians in the Philippines, fearful of being caught, execute their sleight rapidly. Deep in their subconscious they may be saying, “Never mind if the audience don’t get the point of my performance, as long as they don’t catch the secret moves.”
These performers are thankful of the little blessings they get.
However, in most part, aspiring to outpace the eye by speeding up the execution of secret moves is an exercise in futility. Even the fastest sleight of hand, say, a classic pass, cannot outpace the eye.
That explains why smart magicians perform the pass smoothly, not rapidly. They do it using physical covers (like a large motion masking the small motion) or with psychological covers (like misdirection, or laughter elicited by funny lines).
- Fascinating Facts about Phobias (brighthub.com)
- The Way to Sparkling Patter (innermagicclub.wordpress.com)
- Magic is Beyond Moves (innermagicclub.wordpress.com)
- Fascinating List of Specific Phobias (brighthub.com)