Card Chronometry Jon Racherbaumer

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Ron Wilson coined the term, "paying the price," which apparently suggests the following:

An effect consists of structured elements combined to form a given action procedure. When you strengthen a certain element or component in this procedure, other elements or components elsewhere in the effect's structure will likely weaken. Analysts must decide where they are willing to ''pay the price" and how high a price they are willing to pay. For example, sometimes a performer sacrifices an element of deception in order to produce stronger entertainment values and vice versa.

In the following variation, the borrowed deck and certain impromptu elements are sacrificed in order to strengthen certain procedural conditions. This is done in hopes of creating a stronger deception. Students studying any variation must ultimately decide how they are going to ''pay the price." The following variation is no exception.

The effect is basically the same as most Clock Effects. However, it may be more baffling than other routines because of the aforementioned conditions; (1) The cards equal to the chosen hour are pocketed and the clock dial configuration is made with the cards face down (2) The spectator notes the card at his chosen hour while the performer's back is turned; (3) While the performer's back is still turned, the spectator then gathers all the cards composing the clock dial and adds them to the cards in his pocket. All of these cards are thoroughly shuffled and placed on the deck. The deck is also given several straight cuts. (4) The performer picks up the deck and gives it a riffle shuffle. Without looking through the cards, the performer names the chosen hour and the selected card. (Students will recognize that this effect is similar to versions of ''The Mindreaders Dream.'')

Set-up: Since you are using your own cards, the deck is pre-set. Remove the Ace through King of Diamonds and Spades. Place them in numerical order with the Kings at the face of their respective group. The Spade set-up is placed on the bottom of the remaining 26-card talon, which consists of mixed cards. The King of Spades should be the bottom card at the face of the talon.

The Diamond set-up is weaved into the top of the talon so that an indifferent card is interweaved between each card of the Diamond suit. Perform the Faro Weave so that the Ace of Diamonds becomes second from the top of the deck. The entire set-up will then be: X-AD-X-2D-X-3D-X-4D-X-5D-X-6D-X-7D-X-8D-X-9D-X-IOD-X-JD-X-QD-X-KD-13 X cards-AS through KS set-up.

Method: Remove your set-up deck from its case. Give the spectator his instructions by saying, "You'll eventually choose one of these cards." As you deliver this line, begin spreading the center portion of the deck so that the faces are towards the spectator, who will see a mixture of different cards. The set-ups at the ends will be hidden from his view. Simply spread the cards quickly and casually and then square the deck.

Further instruct the spectator to think of any hour. Ask him to remove a number of cards equal to his chosen hour from the top of the deck, placing them in his pocket.

If you want the spectator to deal the cards into the clock configuration, you must then have a large chart showing a clock dial with all the numbers in the appropriate places. This chart could be approximately a square foot in size and would serve the same purposes as the zodiac chart. It could be constructed out of anything: art paper, cloth, or plastic. It depends on how ambitious or artistic you are. Having such a chart permits you to keep your back turned, instructing the spectator to simply deal cards onto the clock dial drawn on the chart.

If you use the chart idea, keep your back turned and instruct the spectator to deal cards face down onto the clock dial, beginning at one o'clock. If you do not use the chart, turn around and deal the cards into the clock configuration yourself. (Those suspecting marked cards will find this latter handling weak.)

Turn your back again, requesting that the spectator peek at the card occupying his hour. Finally ask the spectator to assemble all the cards composing the clock dial, adding them to those in his pocket. Finally, have him shuffle all of the cards.

As he is shuffling the cards, turn around, pick up the tabled deck, and get a left pinky break under the top card. Take the shuffled packet of cards from the spectator and place them on top of the deck and then quickly Triple Cut the cards to the break. Cut at 26 with the cards in your hands or on the table and glimpse the 26th card during the process. Separate the cards and give them a riffle shuffle and straight cut.

The glimpsed card keys everything you need to know. First, because of the previous setup, the key card will always be a Spade card. Regardless of what hour the spectator chooses, his selected card will always be a Diamond card. The value of the key Spade card is equal to the chosen hour and the chosen card. For example, if you glimpse the Five of Spades, the chosen hour is five-o'clock and the selection is the Five of Diamonds.

Now simply name the hour and selected card, using whatever showmanship you deem necessary. As an afterthought, ribbon-spread the deck face up, saying: "...andyou could have chosen any of these cards." The reason for this action is to show that all the cards are different, allowing the skeptic to further examine them for duplicates and possibleset-ups.

Because the value and hour are identical, astute spectators and fast company may obtain a clue as to this method's working. In this case, instead of using the suggested Diamond set-up use a Memorized Stack. You cannot use the Si Stebbins set-up because all of the Spade cards are used in the lowermost set-up, even though it wouldn't appear obvious because of the alternating X cards between the principal cards.

April 14, 1968

SYNCHRONICITY Jon Racherbaumer

This supplements "Card Chronometry." Therefore, follow the outline of that method. The only difference in the set-up is that an edge-marked indifferent card is placed on the bottom of the deck, making the King of Spades second from the bottom or face. The edge-marks should be on the sides.

As the spectator is shuffling the "clock configuration" and "pocketed" cards together, turn around and pick up the tabled deck. Casually Double or Triple Cut the edge-marked bottom card to the top of the deck.

Ask the spectator to replace his shuffled cards onto the deck and then give it several straight cuts. The difference here is that the spectator does the replacing and cutting rather than the performer. This minor condition might be overlooked by spectators and should be emphasized without dramatically pointing it out.

Pick up the deck and hold it in your hands in preparation for a Faro Shuffle. Note whether the edge-marked card is in the upper or lower half of the deck. If it is in the upper half, perform a perfect In-Faro shuffle. If it is in the lower half, perform a perfect Our-Faro shuffle.

Then cut the cards just above the edge-marked card, bringing the edge-marked key to the top of the deck.

The card above the edge-marked key that goes to the bottom of the deck will be one of the appropriate Spade cards; hence, you are able to key the spectator's chosen hour and selection as in "Card Chronometry." Conclude as in the that version. One or two riffle shuffles adequately destroys traces of the set-up.

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