When I was a kid I got into lots of different hobbies and things for fun. I did things like wood carving, juggling, building models, building solid fuel rockets and launching them, skate boarding, collecting stamps and coins, photography, playing with science kits, rigging up all kinds of gadgets, taking things apart and put them together. I love to figure out how things work. When I was in boarding school in India I put all these skills to use to stay occupied and have fun. I remember friends teasing me about the things I made with Duct tape. This is the tape that myself and others would use to make just about anything (even making an airplane to fly home to America! Well that one was only in our imagination…hahaha). Arjan will remember shortly after our first meeting when she came to visit me in New Mexico and saw my "night table" (next to my bed) which was made from a cardboard shoe box and duct tape. Hey…I was a single guy from India! I spent all my time on the computer…why did I need "REAL" furniture anyway??? Hahaha… well… Arjan seemed to think differently. Since then she has slowly molded me to her likings (We have lots of REAL furniture now…and most of my old clothes are gone…and replaced with new stuff). From time to time my duct tape roots sneak in when she is not looking.
OK… A little off topic… but my point was that I was into a lot of creative things when I was a kid. These things gave me many skills that I still use today, and the creativity to explore and imagine. In this age of media where children are spending most of their time mindlessly watching TV or playing video games…it can be easy for a kid to not use their creativity and imagination.
One of the other things which I really had fun with as a kid was MAGIC TRICKS! I got exposed to magic when I was only a few years old. It must have been around 1980. I still remember the day when this Sikh guy (whose name I don’t remember) came to my birthday party and did some tricks for us all. When I got a bit older I started learning some tricks and showed them to my friends. I lived in Los Angeles at the time, and in Hollywood there is a place called "The Magic Castle". As a treat for me my older magician friend took me there (since he worked there). I remember being so excited and thrilled watching all the different tricks. It was one of those really fun moments. This is one of the reasons why I love the Harry Potter Books. They are quite imaginative and take you to "another world". Magic tricks are like this. You see things that you can’t believe…and it makes you wonder.
A month or so ago, I got an email from a 16 year old Gursikh boy from San Jose, California named Vikram Singh. He told me he was a magician, and was going to be posting some videos online of his tricks. When I saw his website it reminded me of myself in many ways when I was a kid. I have to admit though, Vikram Singh is a far better magician than I ever was!!
Have a look at the SikhNet News Article about Vikram Singh, which gives some more information about how he got into magic and what he does these days.
VIDEOS OF HIM DOING MAGIC TRICKS – I particularly enjoyed watching the 18 videos of him doing all different kinds of magic tricks. He is pretty good at it…being just 16 years old!
I think it is great to see Sikh youth applying their imagination and creativity in different ways and think Vikram Singh is doing a great job.
There is lots of other stuff on his website which you can check out at www.VikramKhalsa.com