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Get Out Your Wands

Tricky Business won’t be

disappearing anytime soon

John Reid, owner of Tricky Business, is holding five folded dollar bills in his hand.

“Watch the bills closely,” he says.

He suddenly flips the bills over, and they’re all hundreds. He counts them, folds them, flips them over again and they’re singles again.

“Don’t worry, you’re not going crazy,” he says with a smile.

For the past 30 years, Reid been doing magic tricks, captivating crowds of all ages with card tricks, disappearing acts, illusions and more. His East Meadow store, Tricky Business, is a magic emporium, where magic lovers can come buy tricks as well as learn new skills.

Though nowadays, he performs around the world, Reid’s beginning years in magic were spent doing tricks in his room by himself. Reid was seven years old when he got a Fischer Price magic set from his grandmother for Christmas. He loved doing magic tricks, but as an introvert, was self-conscious about performing.

“I would do tricks, but never show anyone what I was doing,” he said.

Through his teen years, he continued to foster his love of magic, but never did tricks for an audience. After graduating from Holy Trinity High School, he went to the New York Institute of Technology to study architecture, and one day was in the cafeteria doing a card trick for a friend, who asked Reid to perform at his nephew’s birthday party. At the party, someone else asked Reid if he would do another event. Suddenly, Reid found himself making his hobby a side job and realized he could make it a living.

Making a full time career out of doing magic tricks seemed impossible but Reid said he didn’t allow himself another option.

“Everyone says you should have a backup plan, but if you don’t believe in yourself, why should anyone else?” Reid said.  

He opened his first shop in East Northport in 2003, before moving to a location in Hicksville, and then to East Meadow, which is where he’s been for the past three years. His store, located at 2590 Hempstead Turnpike, looks unassuming from the outside, but inside, is a magician’s paradise. Perfect for magicians of all skill levels, Tricky Business sells kits, tricks, props, and of course, plenty of playing card decks. The space also has a classroom in the back, where the shop regularly hosts magic classes and lectures.

Reid says that most magicians are introverts and that he enjoys helping kids get out of their homes and into a more social environment where he can teach them new skills and tricks.  

“The store is a place where I can get younger kids who are interested in magic into a real social environment and help them through their tricks and posture,” Reid said. “It’s a way for me to give back. The more I help a kid, the more it helps me in the end.

For many, the appeal of magic is the power it can have, letting people into an exclusive club of knowing the secrets behind a trick. For Reid, it was the psychology of the art that fascinated him.

“I thought it was interesting how a magician could make a person think one thing, while the reality was something else,” Reid says.

Reid is also a skilled “balloon twister.” But Reid’s creations aren’t just your regular dogs, swords and crowns. His life size balloon creations include recreations of the DeLorean from Back to the Future, a 22 foot ship for Disney Cruises, and dresses. Him and the other six balloon twisters at Tricky Business, can also be seen making balloon creations in restaurants in Hicksville, Carle Place and East Meadow.  

Reid has traveled all over the world, entertaining international audiences with his magic. He’s performed at the White House’s July Fourth celebrations the past five years, has been on Martha Stewart’s show and done birthday parties for the children of celebrities. But at the end of the day, the thing he loves most about magic is how happy it makes people.

“I get to make people smile for a living. I wake up in the morning and my goal is to make the world a happier place,” Reid said. “When I do a trick or make a balloon animal for a kid and see that look in their eyes, it’s the greatest feeling in the world.”

For more information, or to book Tricky Business to perform at your next event, visit www.trickybiz.com.

News

A group of like-minded local residents banded together and saved more than 200 area trees from the chopping block — for now.

A state judge ordered Nassau County and the Department of Public Works to stop cutting down trees along South Oyster Bay Road, granting a temporary restraining order to a group of residents spearheading an effort to save the trees.

State Supreme Court Judge Antonio Brandveen scheduled a hearing on Thursday, Oct. 16 for the county to address complaints from residents, in particular a group called Operation STOMP (Save Trees Over More Pavement) founded by Hicksville native Tanya Lukasik.The Public Works department had planned to removed more than 200 30-foot trees in communities ranging from Plainview, Bethpage, Hicksville and Syosset.

For the past 16 years, Lucia Simon has walked from her home in Hicksville to her job at the Hicksville Public Library. She enjoys her job as a librarian and says that the staff has become like family to her. But for the past three years, Simon and 56 fellow co-workers have been frustrated at what she says is the library’s board refusal to negotiate a fair contract.  

“We have had no contract in three years. They refuse to bargain with us. Every time they come back to us it’s not fair,” says Simon.

However, the board of trustees disagree, saying that it has made a “fair offer.”


Sports

The Girls Varsity soccer team, in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, wore pink uniforms and pink socks in their game on Oct. 8 against MacArthur whom they defeated 1-0. The girls and boys soccer programs at Hicksville High School are selling pink ribbon car magnets with a soccer ball and HHS on it with the words “Kick Cancer” on the ribbon. All the money raised will go to the Sarah Grace Foundation, which is a local foundation trying to beat pediatric cancer. The players plan to raise $1,000 for this organization

— From Hicksville High School

Hicksville native progressing through Mets system

The Mets minor league system is enjoying a rare period of prosperity. For years, it was barren due to trading off high-ceiling players for major leaguers, or neglecting the draft in favor of the free agent market. Since General Manager Sandy Alderson took over, the organization has reversed course and put a much greater emphasis on player development. During his second-to-last season, however, former GM Omar Minaya took a chance and drafted a local catcher, Cam Maron, out of Hicksville High School in the 34th round.


Calendar

Board of Education Meeting

October 22

Oktoberfest

October 25-26

Pancake Breakfast

October 26



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com