He was an old friend for many years. He was the reason I sell and create high-end collectible magic tricks. He inspired me to create two performance pieces that I am most proud of producing. His name and mine are forever linked through the Internet to a collaboration of a magic routine we brought to market. His name was Al Lagomarsino.
I met Al better than 15 years ago at the first magic convention I attended as a dealer. Our tables were next to each other; the only two tables in the back room….the room right next to the bathrooms. This is where the ‘new kids on the block’ were placed. It wasn’t so bad as everybody had to make it past our booths at some point!
Al’s table was filled with tiny little boxes made from Walnut. As I walked by his table on the way to have a cigarette I stopped for a moment and watched him demonstrate what we now call The Mysterious Mini Card Boxes. I remember being taken back to a time of child-like innocence where awe and wonder aroused the senses and there seemed to be no possible explanation in what I just witnessed. I had to see everything else on the table.
I asked if he would wholesale his items to me. All through the day the answer was no. I got to know him though partaking in the occasional smoke throughout the day. We formed a bond that would last many years.
Al’s persona, if you didn’t know him, was like a charactor that could have easily been cast in The Sopranos. He was in his 60’s when we met, very straight-faced and a man of little words, most them 4-letter words! He really could have been type-cast if he acted. If Al let you into his world, you saw the caring and loving side of him. He shared what he learned with me and became a very good friend.
I got the phone call that Al died Friday night. His last few years were rough with heart disease and cancer. Several months ago I had a very long conversation with Al. I always smiled when talking with him and will forever smile when I think of him.
Journey well old friend. We’ll meet again.