Thank you for rocking my world view.
I was a blob of clay throwing all kinds of little blobs onto the pile. The more blobs I amassed, the more blobs I needed. Double lift, flourish, XCM flourish, pass, and on and on it went. The tool box kept growing, like a hundred disconnected Lego blocks.
Instead of being tools to support great magic, they became the focus in and of themselves. Instead of a sculptor, I was becoming a potter, hucking more and more pieces onto a wheel spinning in place and going nowhere.
When I started in magic and knew nothing, magic was about storytelling, and about sharing a mystery. And it was mysterious and it was wonderful.
When I had been performing magic for some time, magic became about sleights, speed, silence...bam...zing...pow...pop. And it was no longer mysterious, it was mechanical...and unmemorable...
And after I met Eugene Burger and Jeff McBride, magic became again, about storytelling...and once again...it became mysterious and wonderful.
The sleights again returned to their proper place...the tool box...from which on appropriate occasions they are summoned to enhance the magic only when needed, rather than the magic being occasionally summoned to enhance the tools.
I came back from the class with a metric ton of material...material taught in the class...and material recommended or provided by the two of you, whether books or DVDs.
I have...literally...years of material...and it is wonderful material. It is the RIGHT material. It is growth material. It is storytelling material...it is mystery material.
And more so, I came home infused with a wisdom and a truth that is priceless and lasting.
And now I step again back onto the mystery path, the wise path, and start sculpting instead of spinning my potters wheel.
What the two of you are doing for the art of magic, can not be overstated.
What you two have created, is unique...it is lasting, and it is an underpinning, a foundation, that will ensure that great magic...the right magic...will continue through the ages, regardless of trends or fads.
You are now the base of the magic pyramid, the foundation, and it not sand but solid rock.
Your wit, your love for the art, your patience, you knowledge, and your collective innate ability as great teachers demonstrates a humility and a depth of character from which every student can greatly benefit, not only in the practice of their art...but more importantly in the practice of their humanity.
And so I thank you simply, because words cannot easily express my great gratitude for the gifts you have both bestowed upon me, and from which I shall go out into the world and share mystery, wonderment and smiles with everyone I am able.