Recently I was performing at On The Border which is a restaurant chain in the Atlanta area. I was performing closeup magic and balloon art for a table, and I had just wowed them with magic and proceeded to make the little girl a butterfly balloon as per her requests. As I start twisting the balloons 2 tables down a young man about 15 years old stands up and is freaking out to which his mother says he is autistic and asks me to stop making balloons, which I did. I explained to her I work with autistic children very often and I can help in this situation with magic. To which the boy gets very excited and hugs me. I had a connection moment with him and he was calm and wanting me to show him magic...but his mother wouldn't have any part of it, she dragged him outside and waited until I was out of their section to bring him back inside. This had such a great potential to be a moment of pure joy for him, which I find so often with any one who has autism, all ranges of the spectrum. Children and adults faces light up seeing me perform magic for them. These people face life every day with autism being over stimulated by sights and sounds in their environment, and I can completely understand how the sound of twisting balloons is like nails on a chalkboard to them. But what I can't understand his how this over protective mom could not see to joy and excitement in her sons face, and how the situation was resolved. She was selfish at that moment when she took him outside and didn't allow him to see the magic trick I wanted to show him, and more importantly that he wanted to see. All she cared about was not being the center of attention any longer in a crowded restaurant, but all she did was make herself look worse. I felt so bad for him and I pray his mother can some day realize that those moments don't have to always be a negative moment and that after 15 or so years of dealing with them she should know that by now. Her reaction I am sure was so routine that I don't think she has ever tied anything else to resolve that type situation, so she didn't believe me that it works...even though he clearly had calmed down and was ready to see some magic!
Here is a blog post from the Autism Speaks website from 2014 about a magician named Cody Comet who performs magic for people living on the spectrum:
-Aaron Clark (The Amazing Ziggy)
My Name is Aaron Clark and I'm know as The Amazing Ziggy. I've been a Professional Magician for over 20 years performing all over the US and internationally, but mostly for events on the east coast in the Atlanta Area.