EFFECT. A spectator shuffles a pack of cards, which can be his own, and then spreads the cards face down on a table. He points to any card he pleases, and that card is removed from the pack and kept in full view. Next he is asked to think of a card. He names it and that card is missing from the pack. He himself turns over the card he pointed out, it is the card he thought of.
SECRET. The trick is hardly as good as its sales talk but can be made effective. When the spectator points out a card you pick it up and place it in your outside coat pocket at the top, allowing about half the card to protrude, "in order to keep it in sight the whole time," as you say. As scan as he names the card he has mentally selected, pick up the pack, run through the faces quickly and on coming to that card transfer it to the top. Say that you cannot find it and ask the spectator to go through the pack to verify the fact that the card is missing. Palm the top card in your right hand and give him the pack. He also fails to find the "thought" card. With your right hand apparently take the card from your coat pocket and put it face down on the table, it is the card. What you really do is to push the card in the pocket right down out of sight and insert the palmed card, bringing it out in place of the other.
The following description of the effect of a trick by Robert-Houdin in his book Les Secrets, published in 1868 will be found interesting. "To place the first card that comes to hand on a table and to predict that whatever may be the card another spectator may please to think of such card shall be identical in suit and value with the card previously removed."
The modern inventor puts the card in his pocket instead of on the table and calls it a new trick.
Was this article helpful?