Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: ENTERTAIN (04/27/17)
TITLE: Becoming Hugs the Clown
By Judy Ewald
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But the highlight of the tour happened when we climbed into this rickety old elevator to the third floor of a building on Charles Street. We arrived in a large very mysterious place, the Yogi Magic shop. Phil Thomas had been a magician for over fifty years and had all kinds of wonderful mystical props and tricks. The local Yogi Magic Club put on an entertaining fun performance. I was chosen to be a helper and things appeared and disappeared in my own hands, I was so enamored, I got hooked on magic.
My son, Bryan, was twelve at the time and joined me in my new hobby. We would go from Annapolis to Baltimore for the monthly Yogi Club meetings. They would perform different tricks but would not tell us how they were done until you purchased it. Then they would take you in a back room to explain the secret. Of course, you were sworn to not tell how it was done. I was selling real estate at the time. And was shown a couple of simple but effective self-working tricks to use in my lecture. I had started a tour and workshop to promote properties. This was the 'No Money Down' time of investing in real estate.
I would show them a red rope and say, “You don’t want to retire in the red, but in the green.” And instantly the rope turned green. The other trick I did went over really well. I said, “The best way to promote yourself is giving out lots of your business cards,” as the card I held up turned into a bunch of ten dollar bills!
I wanted to pursue this world of magic but did not see myself in a top hat and tails, so I thought I would be a clown. This was before the internet, I checked the library and found two ladies who gave a clown class at the local community college. I had been looking at fabric to make a costume, grateful Mom taught me to sew. I was glad they were willing to help me. I took my fabric and Ideas, they made suggestions and kindly showed me how to apply makeup. I thought it strange that they were Christian clowns. I met Christian Graham a young man making coins disappear and reappear in a shop. I told him my interest in magic. He took me to his house and gave me a few props. Later found out he was a Christian, too.
I pondered on how to come up with a clown name, did not want to be Buttons, Petunia or any other common name. At one of the magic meetings, I met a man who volunteered in hospitals in Baltimore and called himself Hugs. I just knew that was to be my name, I did not see me going to Baltimore. Even though I did not know God then, I know now He gave me that name because I would be single for many years and I would need many wholesome hugs.
I had mentioned to one of my real estate clients my interest in clowning and their four-year- old daughter said I could come to her party. I did my couple of tricks, painted some designs on the few children there and brought a bouquet of balloons. The balloons got all tangled and I swore not to bring balloons again, they gave me $20.00, a bottle of booze, and I don’t drink. That was my first show.
Now you know the beginning of my becoming Hugs. My becoming a Child of King Jesus took a long hard journey while working and living in an abusive relationship with a magician.
The rest of the story you can read in my memoir, “Masks.”
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