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pp59-92 4/13/05 11:39 AM Page 7

Cutting Up Jackpots by Bev Bergeron

BevBergeron@aol.com

PROFESSOR’S NIGHTMARE
or How Gene Gordon met Bob Carver

The Houston, Texas Ring 39 was oldest granddaddy trick of them all – I
picked to sponsor and produce the I.B.M. asked him to repeat it for some of my
Convention of 1957. Originally, the local friends. Bob was nice – he repeated it,
committee was spearheaded by Frank not once, but several times. By his third
Werner until his untimely death when he presentation, I approached him and said
was replaced by Cal Emmit. The group that I recognize what he was doing since
had gained worldwide publicity by hav- at that time, I had in my act Hen Fetsch’s
ing Bill Siros float a lady news reporter Quadroplets.
down the Main Street. Later Bill “float- Bob smiled and said yes; he was
ed” a girl over the Rice Hotel, headquar- inspired with that part of Fetsch’s routine
ters for the event, as described here earli- and cleaned up the moves. I then asked
er. permission to perform Bob’s improve-
All of this was very exciting; however, ments.” He seemed overwhelmed that
there was one happening that had a more anyone would want to use his material.
profound impact on magic – the magic Bob entered the I.B.M. Convention
contest. The partying started a few days contest and a hold was put on his first-
before the official opening of the con- place award. It seems that the judges did
clave. Several I.B.M. members arrived not believe what they had witnessed in
early to participate in what in those days the contest was pure sleight of hand and
were the “magic days.” One of these not trick ropes. The only way that he
magicians was Bob Craver from Macon, could persuade the judges were to expose
Georgia. Bob had a happy personality – the trick to them. Bob won!
you liked him as he walked into the A few years passed while I took Bob’s
room. For some strange reason, we trick to the West Coast where magicians
became instant buddies. lined up to see me perform his master-
However, it was not all his personality piece. I was riding high on his reputation.
that was capturing the magic world; it Earl Forest of Santa Rosa, California
was a rope trick that he was performing. even set up a special meeting/party for
He took three uneven ropes and after me with his I.B.M. Ring while I was
gathering them together – a slight pull, working their local fair. Of course, I had
and the ropes were stretched until they to perform Bob’s rope routine. After two
were all the same length. Like everyone years of basking in glory, ads started to
else in the room, my first reaction was a appear in magic magazines for a new
wide-opened mouth. trick called “Professor’s Nightmare”
While Bob was making friends with sold by Gene Gordon.
his rope mystery, I, of course, pulled the The magic world pounced on the
May, 2005 65

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