Very Special Magic Club Reports

 

Susan Hachette, Club Secretary

Susan Hachette (pronounced like ‘hat-CHAY’) is the secretary for the Centre Michigan Magic Club. The modest organization is dedicated to the promotion of all forms of magic in “all kinds of people.”

You’ve probably have never heard of Ms. Hachette or the Centre Michigan Magic Club. To be honest, neither had I until I received the following note last week:

Sirs or Madams:

We are a small magic club here in Michigan. We like to think of ourselves as amateur magicians who get paid for performing their hobby. I am writing to you today because we cannot get our words out to the mainstream magic population. Our club has 22 full-time members and about 11 more when summer comes and people vacation here in Centre.

The Centre Michigan Magic Club is not a member of the IBM or the Society of American Magicians because they did not want us to join. We are like the Amish to them ? not that we are Amish but we do have a Mennonite couple who perform but in regular clothes.

The major organizations do not want to have magicians like us in their organization because they think we will take away from the commercialism of their organizations.

I am not saying we are better than the other clubs in the IBM or the Society of American Magicians. We are just different than they are. Because I am the secretary for the club, I have been writing up reports of the meetings but because we can’t get membership in the IBM or the Society of American Magicians, they don’t get published.

One of our members saw your website and said you had…

 

Susan Hachette, Club Secretary

Susan Hachette (pronounced like ‘hat-CHAY’) is the secretary for the Centre Michigan Magic Club. The modest organization is dedicated to the promotion of all forms of magic in “all kinds of people.”

You’ve probably have never heard of Ms. Hachette or the Centre Michigan Magic Club. To be honest, neither had I until I received the following note last week:

Sirs or Madams:

We are a small magic club here in Michigan. We like to think of ourselves as amateur magicians who get paid for performing their hobby. I am writing to you today because we cannot get our words out to the mainstream magic population. Our club has 22 full-time members and about 11 more when summer comes and people vacation here in Centre.

The Centre Michigan Magic Club is not a member of the IBM or the Society of American Magicians because they did not want us to join. We are like the Amish to them ? not that we are Amish but we do have a Mennonite couple who perform but in regular clothes.

The major organizations do not want to have magicians like us in their organization because they think we will take away from the commercialism of their organizations.

I am not saying we are better than the other clubs in the IBM or the Society of American Magicians. We are just different than they are. Because I am the secretary for the club, I have been writing up reports of the meetings but because we can’t get membership in the IBM or the Society of American Magicians, they don’t get published.

One of our members saw your website and said you had information about magic both mainstream and out of the norm. He said I should send you our Monthly Club Reports to see if you will publish them. I think your readers would enjoy reading about our club’s activities and magic.

I have about 5 years saved up of reports that I can send to you. The last years of reports are on a computer hard drive but the other four years are on paper. I have sent you the reports from 2003 to see if you like them. I can send you more if you like them and one of the men in the club can make a “copy” of the hard drive to send you this year’s reports.

If you can’t use them, that is okay. You can throw them out because we made copies before we sent them to you.

Very Sincerely Yours,

Susan Hachette

I read the reports she sent along with her note and was impressed. You really get a feel for the dynamics of the club and the reality of keeping 22 to 33 people happy with every decision. I will publish the first of the reports on Friday night but I wanted to give you a highlight of what the other reports will bring.

Bill Post, President (Publicity Photo)

The President of the Centre Michigan Magic Club (“CMMC”) is Bill Post.  In the reports he is called “Mr. President” or “President Post.” From what I can discern, he is a war veteran (likely from Korea or Viet Nam), he owns an insurance bureau in Centre’s neighboring city to the north, Alden. It is difficult to tell if he is an accomplished magician.

On one hand, it is likely he must have some pretty decent skills to be voted president. Or, it could be that the secretary does not wish to offend him by giving anything less than glowing comments.

The Vice President is a 14 year-old boy (he is also President of the Junior Centre Michigan Magic Club (“JCMMC”)) with the stage name, Jax. His given name is Tad Stecklow and I am guessing he is the son of the club’s treasurer, Thaddeus Stecklow. Jax has appeared three times in as many years on the local ABC affiliate’s coverage of the Jerry Lewis Telethon.

Tad “JAX” Stecklow

He is apparently expert in manipulation and has a silent act that seems to be in the style of Lance Burton.

The Treasurer, as I mentioned, is Thaddeus Stecklow, M.D. Dr. Stecklow practices at the regional medical center. I am guessing from a reference made in a later report that he is a pathologist.

“Our Treasurer, Dr. Stecklow, entertained us with a great knife through the coat effect. He said it reminded him of his work at the hospital.

He joked that he did not need to get malpractice insurance because he only works with the dead so what is the worst that could happen? We laughed at that and then he said, ‘I guess they could show up as an audience.'”

From the description of the Knife through Coat, I think it was the old Sam Berland version complete with the paper target hung from the collar of the jacket.

The Secretary, Susan Hachette is apparently recently divorced from a magician in the club but she does not identify the man. There is no other Hachette on the club membership list. I am guessing that Hachette is her maiden name.

 

I think that she is recently divorced and that her ex is still in the club’s membership because of one reference in a report near the beginning of the collection I received.

“Your Secretary performed a humorous Topsy Turvey Bottle routine with an assistant from the audience. The volunteer ? except he did not really volunteer ? tried to keep his bottle upright or at least in the same position as my bottle.

Finally, I said, ‘He can’t handle a beer, he doesn’t know which end is up, and he is always staring at some one else’s bottom. And you wonder why we’re divorced!”

Ms. Hachette did not say whether this received a great laugh.

I hope I have whetted your taste for the club reports. I am trying to edit them so I can cut out references that will be lost on you and me; and yet still give a flavor for this unique little magic club in Michigan.

I will try to have a couple of the reports ready for this weekend’s edition.

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