Professional Amateurs and Amateur Professionals

“The best amateur has the skills of a professional but true professionals stay amateurs at heart.”

Michael Kimmelman, The Accidental Masterpiece

During my ten years as a full-time professional magician I regularly received messages from amateurs who wanted to take me for coffee to “pick my brain.”

I’ve always hated that phrase. If you want my advice, just tell me that. I can afford my own coffee, and I prefer my brain intact. I digress.

These coffee meetings always went the same way.

“I’m a lifelong lover of magic. I’ve done a couple of small paid gigs for friends of friends, but it’s my

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