Rapid Mental Transference

EFFECT:

Performer shows a card, an envelope, and a pencil. He gives card and pencil to a spectator with request to write any number between one and a million. Card is then sealed into envelope. Spectator is asked to concentrate on his number. Performer takes pencil and in a moment writes spectator's number, digit by digit, on the envelope. Card is then removed from envelope and the two numbers shown to check.

PARAPHERNALIA:

1 -- A blank card like a visiting or business card, about 2 x 3 1/2 inches.

2 -- An opaque manila pay envelope, about 3 1/4 x 4 3/4 inches.

To prepare:

Take the envelope and insert in it a piece of cardboard. This is done so that when you cut a slit in the front of envelope, the back or seamed side will not be affected. Cut your slit about 1 1/8 inches from flap end of envelope. Cut it to within about half an inch from sides of envelope. Remove cardboard. If slit is made with a very sharp knife or razor blade, it will not be noticeable when envelope is shown hurriedly. At a distance of a few feet from spectators, slit is not visible at all. However, be on your guard so that slit is not exposed.

Figure 12 and 13.

To Perform:

Come forward with prepared envelope, card, and pencil. Hold pencil in right hand. Hold envelope in left hand with slit side down on palm and flap side up. Have card on envelope.

Figure 14.

"Before beginning work in mental transference, I usually make a test at rather close quarters to determine harmony of thought. Audiences vary just as radio conditions vary. One night you hear a station very clearly, and the next night you perhaps can't even get that station."

Come down close to audience. If performing on stage, stand on the runway or steps.

"Will you, sir, be kind enough to help me? I believe you have good power of concentration. Please take this card and pencil and write down any number between one and a million. I suggest that you write a number of three or four digits, though, of course, you have your own free choice. Do not let me see the number -- keep that side of the card hidden from me."

Spectator writes number on card.

"And I shall ask you to place the card in this envelope."

Show slit side of envelope by taking it in right hand and then replacing in left. Slit will not be noticed. Envelope held in left hand in position shown in Figure 14 makes it easy for spectator to insert card without noticing slit.

"Keep the number side of card downward and away from me and just slip the card into this envelope."

As he places card in envelope, guide it so that it goes through the slit and most of the card is between left palm and envelope instead of inside.

Figure 15.

WARNING:

Watch your Angles of Visibility. Make sure that no one can see the card outside of envelope. Hold it close enough to you and stand far enough away from spectators to cover card well.

Seal flap of envelope and hold envelope in position shown in Figure 16. This exposes numbered side of card and enables you to read it at a glance. Do not keep your eyes on envelope but glance at it very quickly and look up again at spectator who wrote number. As you talk to him, allow envelope to slip back on palm of left hand again.

"You have written a number, sir, of your own free choosing -a number somewhere between one and a million. I have had you write it on this card so that you may the better concentrate on it. Will you, sir, think of your number one digit at a time, starting with the first? That's fine! I sense the number TWO. Is that right, sir. It is."

Write the number 2 on the envelope.

"Now, the next number. SEVEN — right? SEVEN."

Write 7 next to the 2.

"The next -- that's right, concentrate hard. ONE correct? You are doing fine, sir."

Write 1 after the 7.

"Again -- the next number. NINE -- right? Down goes the NINE."

Write 9 after the 1.

"Now, try it again. Oh, there isn't any more -that's all there is. All right, then. The number is -- two, seven, one, nine. Let us check up."

Tear open flap of envelope, reach inside with right hand and draw out card, part of which must still be in envelope. Show numbered side to audience and read card.

"Two seven one nine.

I suggest using numbers, but names could be written and spelled out letter by letter.

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