Economy Class Departure

Effect: Here Mr. Elmsley duplicates as closely as is possible the eifect of his "Point of Departure", without the benefit of a double-faced card. The search for a no-feke version of this trick has been taken up by a number of cardinen over the years, and solutions of varying merit have been published. Below is one of several that Mr. Elmsley devised in the late 1950s and early 1960s. He comments that the basic structure is flexible to minor variation. Therefore, it is not surprising that several cardmen in recent years have explored similar paths.

Method: In the best of all possible worlds, two identical jokers should be used in this trick. But if you are residing in less congenial climes, two royal color-mates can be substituted for the jokers; e.g., the red kings or the blackjacks. For this explanation, we will presume the ideal has been achieved.

Run through the deck and remove the two jokers as you come to them, tossing them face-down onto the table. Square the deck and turn it face-down into left-hand dealing position. As you do this, obtain a left fourth-finger break under the top two cards.

With your right hand, pick up the jokers, turn them face-up and run the left fingers and thumb along their sides, squaring them briefly over the deck. In this squaring action, secretly pick up the two face-down car ds above the break. Then, while holding the packet above the deck, use the tip of the left third finger to pull down the inner right corner of the bottom card of the packet (Figure 66), creating a flesh break at the inner end, which the right thumb then maintains.

You are now prepared to display the two jokers to the audience and, in the process, steal one of them from the packet. With your left thumb, draw the top joker onto the deck, outjogged for roughly an inch. With the two jokers fully displayed, explain to the audience that these cards will play important roles during the trick.

Place the right hand's joker (really three cards) square onto the outjogged joker and apparently pick it up. What really occurs is that the right hand moves inward in a squaring motion, bringing all four cards momentarily flush with the pack while keeping their inner ends slightly elevated. In this action the right thumb releases the face-down card below the break. Then the right hand immediately moves forward again, carrying only the top two cards of the packet: a face-up joker with a face-down indifferent card beneath it. The second Joker lies face-up and hidden below the top card of the deck. The reader will recognize this switch as a variant of Edward Mario's ATFUS.

Set the right hand's two car ds onto the table, letting them spread ever so slightly, so that a bit of the white border on the bottom card can be seen. (This is a Roy Walton subtlety.)

Bring the right hand back to the deck and procure a left fourth-finger break under the top two cards (the reversed joker aids in this). You will now execute a sleight Mr. Elmsley calls the rollover switch. Begin by dealing cards from the pack into the right hand, commencing with a two-card push-off: with the left thumb at the extreme left side of the pack, push over the two cards above the break as one, and take the double card into the palm-up right hand. Deal two or three single cards onto the double card, holding them all in a loose dealing grip with the forefinger stretched across the front edges. Now, without pause, begin to spread cards smoothly off the pack and into the right hand, forming a spread over the packet of dealt cards (Figure 67, forefinger moved aside to expose the configuration of the cards). This position is identical to that used in the spread displacement (p. 40). As you spread through the deck, ask someone to touch a card. Stop spreading when one is indicated. Try to time this so that the selection is made somewhere near center.

Break the spread above the selection and, with the right hand's portion of the spread, flip the selection face-up on the left hand's cards (Figure 68), Then take the face-up card under the right hand's spread, with a portion of it still in view at the left (Figure 69). Let the spread settle onto the extended right fingers.

The face-up selection appears to rest on the bottom of the spread, but it actually lies sandwiched between the spread and the small packet of cards that was initially dealt into the right hand; and on the bottom of that packet is a face-up joker.

Move the left hand and its portion of the spread away from the right hand while contracting the right fingers to pull the right hand's spread of cards partially closed. The spread must be closed far enough to allow the right thumb to reach across the back of the cards to the left side (Figure 70). Now use the thumb to close the spread completely and pull the packet up against the palm. Simultaneously turn the right hand palm-up. This action turns the packet over, exposing a face-down card, the joker, at the face. The instant the thumb has pushed the spread closed, use it to push the joker to the left for about half its width (Figure 71). The audience believes this card to be the selection seen just an instant earlier. If these actions are timed properly, the selection never seems to leave the spectators' sight. It is an exceedingly deceptive switch of a card.

Let the face-down card drop from the right hand to the table. Then flip the right hand's packet face-down onto the left hand's cards and quickly square the deck. This buries the selection faceup near center.

With your palm-down right hand, pick up the pair of cards (the face-up joker and the face-down indifferent card) from the table, grasping them by their ends. Bring the pair casually over the deck to square the sides of the cards with the tips of the left fingers. As you move the pair square over the pack for an instant, secretly release the lower card onto the deck, then move the Joker forward again, handling it as if it were both jokers. All this should take only a few seconds. As you execute this unloading of the indifferent card, do not draw attention to your actions. Instead, fix your gaze on the

tabled card thought to be the selection, and make some remark about it.

Set the deck face-down to one side and place the right hand's joker hi to left-hand dealing position. Then, with your right hand, pick up the face-down card (the second joker) from the table, holding it by its outer end. Slip the inner right corner of this card under the outer end of the left hand's Joker. In doing so, pretend to insert the card between the two jokers. As mentioned in "Point of Departure", make this look realistic, but don't overact. Leave the face-down card caught for a moment by its corner beneath the face-up joker, as if it were trapped between two cards, while you actually support it with the tip of the left forefinger (see Figure 65, p. 120). Then, with the right fingers, push the face-down card flush with the face-up joker. Do not move the face-up joker as you do this, or the illusion will suffer.

The two back-to-back cards are now counted as three, using the actions of a Stanyon count: Having pushed the face-down joker square with the face-up joker, grasp the pah' by its right side in right-hand pinch grip. Then, with the palm-up left hand, draw the top joker from the packet, taking it either at the left fingertips or into dealing grip. Bring the left hand back to the right, ostensibly to take the face-down card onto the joker; but instead, the left hand's joker is slid under the right hand's face-down card and reclaimed between the right thumb and fingertips, while the left hand simultaneously carries away the face-down card. In other words, the contents of the hands are smoothly exchanged. Bring the left hand back to the right and take the face-up joker onto the face-down card.

Three cards have been counted, and a face-down card (thought to be the selection) is seen apparently between two face-up jokers. The disappearance of the selection from between the jokers is effected now through the agency of Mr. Elmsley's prayer vanish:

With the left hand's packet held in dealing position, place your right hand over the cards, as if about to palm them. Actually grip the cards in right-hand classic palm and, while pressing the palms lightly together, rotate the hands in opposite directions, until they are aligned in "prayer" position (Figure 72). At this point draw full attention to the hands. Without pausing, relax the right hand's grip on the two cards and twist the hands another ninety degrees, each hand continuing to turn in the same direction as before, until they lie crosswise to each other (Figure 73). Friction will cause the card resting against each palm to follow that hand. Both cards are now In classic palm position in their respective hands. Rotate the palm-up right hand palm-down, pivoting it from beneath the left hand,

and contract the fingers of both hands to retain a card in each (Figure 74). Hold the hands side by side about a foot above the table and suddenly spread the fingers, letting the two jokers fall face-up (Figure 75).

Show the hands completely empty and rub the Jokers briskly back and forth a few times on the table to prove them single. Then dramatically ribbon spread the deck, exposing the face-up selection in the middle.

In circumstances where one is lacking duplicate jokers, and similar court cards, like red kings or blackjacks, have been substituted, you may wish to eliminate the Stanyon false count. It has been my experience, however, that even magicians don't notice that the same card is seen twice during the count. Their attention seems focused on the face-down card, causing them to overlook the discrepancy.

As mentioned in the beginning, this structure is conducive to variations in handling. Mr. Elmsley has experimented with quite a few over the years, before settling on the one just taught. If you check "Snap Swap" in Volume I (pp. 291-292) you will find another card switch that can be substituted for the rollover switch above. In fact, the switch in "Snap Swap" was originally invented for a "Point of Departure" handling.

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