What you see is not exactly what you get, that pretty much sums up our recent Sanibel-Captiva Rotary club guest speaker, magician Brian Boyd.
As he took center stage Boyd presented a rather commanding figure; tall, physically fit with an imposing stance, and dressed all in black; he was quite daunting. No surprise, his background includes a dual career in federal law enforcement and the U.S. Army Special Forces (Green Berets).
Boyd told us that, "His influences growing up were scouting, Quincy, and James Bond. All you need to know, you can learn in scouting, particularly how to tie someone up."
Magician Brian Boyd performing a trick for Rotary members. PHOTO PROVIDED.
And of course, the knight on the white horse mentality of intrigue and crime solving cloaked in glamour is pretty much what led him to a career in law enforcement and then into the Green Berets.
As an employee of a federal law enforcement agency, Boyd trained troops from all over the world in military law enforcement techniques and regulations. One of the teaching techniques that he found invaluable was using magic. Because not all of the trainees spoke the same language, magic illustrated that nothing is what it seems. Observation is important, nothing is black and white, and sometimes it's just an illusion. Magic broke the language barrier and relaxed everyone so that they could learn to work together and perform their tasks.
Boyd was then recruited into the Green Berets and counter intelligence. At some point while still in the Green Berets he wanted to become an FBI agent, but would have to leave the armed forces. That wasn't going to happen. The DEA didn't have the same restriction, so the opportunity arose to be interviewed by President Nixon along with fellow candidate G. Gordon Liddy for the DEA. Whatever happened to that guy?
He went from the DEA to the AFT where he became an arson specialist handling federal arsonist crimes. ATF has offices in all 50 states.
"AFT special agents in the field handle investigations involving criminal organizations, the illegal use and trafficking of firearms, the illegal use and storage of explosives, acts of arson and bombings, acts of terrorism, and the illegal diversion of alcohol and tobacco products. ATF agents often work closely with local law enforcement officials," he said.
After retiring from government service, Boyd became a restaurateur and as a promotional tactic to increase business performed his magic. After a successful entrepreneurial career, he has decided to make Sanibel his permanent home and, once again, is picking up that magic wand performing magic and comedy shows for events and business meetings.
At our meeting, out came the razzle-dazzle top hat and a deck of cards, it was "magic time." What a treat, everyone was amazed and left wondering how does he do? Especially Rotarians Joel Ospa, Don Russell, and Holli Martin, who assisted with the magic tricks. What a blast. Boyd had something up his sleeve all along; he turned from a Special Forces Green Beret into Johnny Carson's Cardac the Magnificent right before our eyes. Now how did he do that?
Sanibel-Captiva Rotary Club meets at 7 a.m., every Friday morning at the Dunes Golf and Tennis Club in Sanibel for breakfast. Guests are always welcomed.