THE TIME I ALMOST SAVED A LIFE WITH A SPONGE BALL TRICK - True Stories from Bo / by Bo Gerard

My magic hands in a 1980's TV Spot

Everyone should know how to do one magic trick.  It’s handy if you need to break the ice, or amuse family members…or SAVE YOUR LIFE!  The reason this is titled “The Time I Almost Saved a Life with a Sponge Ball Trick” is not because the trick didn’t save a life, it’s only that I was indirectly involved in the saving of that life.

I worked with a guy named Jim in two different theater companies in New York – “Sidewalks of New York” and “Bond Street Theatre Coalition”.  Jim was the type of guy that wanted to learn everything he could from everyone he worked with.  If he found out that you knew how to do a back handspring he made you teach him.  He made me teach him everything I had ever learned up to that point - juggling, pennywhistle, acrobatics and magic.  He was a bit impulsive and even explosive, but his eagerness to learn was invigorating.  Well, Jim found himself in the restroom of a Times Square movie theater late one night and he was soon cornered by two chaps that decided they were going to get whatever money he had from him or hurt him for not having any – or BOTH.  In a situation where I personally would have merely handed over anything valuable that I had and then cowered pitifully in the corner, Jim chose a different route.  He thought “this would be the perfect time to use the sponge ball trick that Bo had taught me”.  In hopes of distracting them from their task of robbing and hurting him, he pulled out the two sponge balls that I had given him to practice with and started performing.  I know what your saying – this is preposterous!  This would never work in real life!  But lo and behold it DID!!!  He somehow charmed these two villains and won them over.  Well, won them over enough for them NOT to put the hurt on him.

Times Square -  late 70's

Times Square -  late 70's

All of this is absolutely true according to Jim, and I really had no reason to doubt him since he was not really the type to make up outlandish stories.  So, it just goes to show you, you should learn a magic trick or two.  It just might save your life one day.