Thursday, December 31, 2009

A Duck And A Dream

I had the pleasure of watching arguably the world’s best magician David Copperfield live in Melbourne recently. The magic itself was awesome: motorbikes and cars were materialised on stage, a paper rose was lit on fire and turned into a real rose and of course there were ducks (well one duck at least called Webster).

Strangely what stood out for me the most though was Copperfield’s story about his father and his grandfather. Copperfield’s father won a prestigious acting scholarship (also won by Robert Redford and Danny Devito) but his father (Copperfield’s grandfather) banned him from taking it with threats of disowning him. His father acquiesced.

At the age of 14 when Copperfield decided he wanted to pursue a life as a magician his grandfather tried the same act on him telling him that performers were “bums”. Obviously Copperfield wasn’t dissuaded but sadly his grandfather never spoke to him again.

I’ve got to have such respect for someone with the maturity to determine a career path at age 14 and to overcome such obstacles to follow it. He had a dream and wouldn’t be bullied into forsaking it.

I feel sorry for his grandfather. Firstly, he’s attempted to bully two generations and has succeeded in helping one give up his dream. Secondly, he didn’t have the courage to admit he was wrong prior to his death when Copperfield had obviously proved he wasn’t going to be a “bum”.

If there’s someone around you: young, old or even yourself with a dream, what can you do to encourage it today?

And just for a giggle, here’s Webster (the duck).



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