FISM officials here at the International Congress have let it be known that they are checking all cardmen contestants for signs of Zinc Steroids
--- an addictive derivative of zinc stearate conntonly referred to as "fanning powder".
Authorities here say that inhaling zinc steroids increases finger muscle size --- making the victims literally transform into super cardmen. This has had a dramatic impact on the competitions this year as shouts of "foul play" ring out from both sides.
It is difficult to catch the outlawed use of these steroids, the only outward sign being enlarged breasts. Russian cardman Nicholai "Boom Boom" Nichcwsky denied any knowledge of the drug among Sewiet finger flingers. You will remember his participation in the contests yesterday when he executed the classic pass invisibly... with no misdirection ... sixty times during one minute... with one hand.
Judges here said that he would have won the preliminary card competition if he had not run ewer the allotted time. It seems Mr. Nichcwsky could not stop. His coach, Karl Bosopof declined contnent when asked if the rumors about having to pry the cards from Nicholai's hands were true.
Controversial random testing for traces of the steroids continues here with most of the contestants complaining about the timing of the test. Since the steroids only remain in the system for a limited amount of time, it is necessary to test during the performance. Upon a surprise call for a test, the performer is handed a spirit cloth and an empty cup. It is otvious that many of the magicians are not adept with the use of the spirit cloth and this has added new meaning to the term "flashing".
Another note of interest at this year's congress is in the dealers' room. It seems that the mirror glass is making a surprise comeback among magicians. Long v iewed as an out of date prop, there has been a run on dealers' supplies here at this gathering. Rumors are rampant that this utility ds; ice is being used to switch samples behind the spirit cloth.
We will attempt to keep you up-to-date on the events and the controversial testing as these stories develop.
Effect. The magician spreads the cards in his hands and asks a spectator to touch one. The spectator indicates his selection and the magician raises the card so that the spectator can note and remember his selection.
The deck is squared and turned face up. "Now you are not going to believe this, but I placed two cards from another deck in this deck and they are going to magically travel to surround (or 'sandwich') your card. In other words, they are going to magically jump through the other cards to positions on either side of your selection. What is the name of your card?"
When the spectator answers, the magician thumbs through the cards until he finds the chosen one. "Yep. Those cards on either side of your card are the ones I placed in here from another deck. Neat, huh?"
It only takes a moment (except for some of my audiences) for the audience to realize that they have been had. The magician simply noted the cards on either side of the face up card and claimed they were the ones from the other deck. They are usually very vocal at this point.
"Oh. I see. You really are not going to believe this. You think I lied and that these cards belong to this deck, don't you?" While all of this is going on, the magician has removed the three face up cards in question, the selection and the cards above and below it. The balance of the deck is spread face down on the table.
"Well, I guess I will have to try something a little tougher. Let me reassemble the deck and try something else." At this, the magician removes the selection from between the two indifferent cards and replaces it in the middle of the spread. He then picks up the two remaining cards and turns them face down to insert them in the spread. He suddenly notices that they don't belong --- since they are wearing different colored backs.
As if just now remembering that those cards don't belong with that deck, "0hf that's right." Without another word, the magician removes a blue backed card case and places the two blue backed cards inside.
The Work. I am going to give you three versions of this., The first two are self working while the third uses two standard sleights. I have used all three of these at different times and I will discuss the tradeoffs between the three as I describe them.
working --- leaving room for as much presentation as you can muster and your audience can tolerate. However, in this version, you only have one odd backed card. You do not get a sandwich effect but the rest of the effect remains the same.
You sell the audience on the premise that a card from another deck will magically travel through the deck and wind up beside their chosen card.
Start by having an odd backed card on the bottom of the deck. Fan the cards for a selection. While it is being shown, take the deck in the right hand from abcwe in Biddle position. Use the right forefinger to swing (swivel or kick) cut the top half of the pack into the palm up left hand. Have the selection replaced on top of the left half. Reassemble the pack by placing the cards which are in the right hand on top of the cards in the left hand. This brings the stranger card to a position immediately abov e the selected card. From here it is a simple matter to j finish as described above.
Second Method. True to the effect, this method uses two stranger cards to sandwich the selection. It is also self-working. If there is a down side. j it's that the display at the conclusion is not quite as open as in the other two methods.
We will assume that you are using a blue backed ace of hearts and king of spades for your stranger cards in a red backed deck. The set up is as follows. From the face of the pack, you will have the blue backed ace of hearts, an indifferent card, and the blue backed king of spades. On the top of the pack, you have the matching red backed king of spades.
Spread the deck before the spectators for a selection. Be careful not to flash the two blue backed cards near the bottom of the pack. We will assume that the ten of spades is the selection. Reassemble the deck and grasp it in the right hand from above in Biddle position. Swing cut the top half into the left hand. Direct the spectator to place his selection on top of the left half. Conplete the cut by placing the right half onto the left half and square the pack.
Turn the pack face up and ask for the name of the selection. Riffle the pack and claim that the riffle caused the two cards from another pack to come together to trap, or sandwich the selection between them.
Carefully spread the face up cards from the left hand into the right looking for the selected card. You will come to the king of spades first, followed by the selected ten of spades, and the ace of hearts. You can spread one card past the ace to show the indifferent card but be careful not to flash the duplicate king of spades which is beneath the indifferent card.
Tell them that the ace and the king are the two cards from the other deck.
They will realize that you said this only after noting the two cards on either side of the selection. Allow them to voice their disappointment with the trick. Tell them that you will try another one.
Square the deck and turn it face down. Spread the cards across the table or in the hands. They will see two blue backed cards sandwiching a red backed card. Pull the two blue backed cards from the spread and turn them face up. Since they are the ace of hearts and the king of spades, they will assume that the card between them was the selected card. Actually, this was the indifferent card you loaded prior to the start of the trick. Put the deck down and remove a blue backed case from your pocket and return the blue backed cards to the blue backed case. Proceed with another trick while they ponder what they have just witnessed.
Third Method. This is the original method and the one I use most of the time. The two sleights almost appear to have been originated for this trick since they fit so naturally. The two sleights used are the Hofzinzer Spread Pass and the turnover pass.
The setup and performance are easy to describe. Start with the two stranger cards on the bottom of the deck. If you flash the bottom card of the deck when executing your version of the Hofzinzer pass, you will want to start with an indifferent card on the bottom beneath the two stranger cards.
Hold the left hand in dealing position and use the fourth finger to pull down the bottom card to obtain a little finger break above the bottom card (bottom two cards if using and extra indifferent card on the bottom).
Spread the cards for a selection and control it into the little finger break. Square the cards and execute a turnover pass. Their card is now sandwiched between the two stranger cards in the middle of the pack.
Ask for the name of their selection. Riffle the deck to apparently make the magic happen. Then spread the cards to start the sucker part of the routine.
Regurgitations. The third method is the cleanest and most direct method. The other two versions were attempts to arrive at the same effect with a self-
working approach. On the second version I worked out several handlings designed to wind up with the real selection between the two stranger cards --- but then I realized that it wasn't necessary. Nobody will question the fact that you managed to sandwich their card. The trick is ewer at that point and there is no reason for them to doubt what you claim to have done.
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Magick is the art and practice of moving natural energies to effect needed or wanted change. Magick is natural, there is absolutely nothing supernatural about it. What is taught here are various techniques of magick for beginners. Magick is natural and simple and the techniques to develop abilities should be simple and natural as well. What is taught on this site is not only the basics of magick, but the basics of many things.