Turn slate over and make a 4. "And four."
Pick up first slate, leaving flap on table. As flap has newspaper backing, it is not noticed on other pieces of newspaper. Keep written side down and place this slate on other one. Figure 2 is on top and message is now between two of the slates.
"I shall ask you, sir, to tie these slates together with
Hand tape to spectator and have him tie slates together.
"Now you may hold them for a while. Please hold them up so that everybody can see the slates all the time."
Say to another spectator:
"Have you ever been interested in spirit writing, sir? Have you ever communicated with the spirits -the spirit of some departed friend? Perhaps there is some question that you would like to ask and have one of the departed answer for you. I want you to ask a question in your own mind. You need not say it aloud. Just think of it. Have you done so? Concentrate on it for a moment."
Say to spectator holding slates:
"Do you feel any peculiar sensation in the slates -a sort of trembling? I believe you are a psychic yourself. Would you mind opening the slates now? Remove the tape and open them up."
Spectator does as requested. Pick up the slate with the message on it and show to audience.
"The spirits have written, 'Cannot answer in public.' Perhaps 'tis just as well for many things are better left unanswered."
If you have three or four question marks on slate, say, "I'm afraid you have even the dear departed brothers guessing."
Figures 30 and 31
If you are working at a public performance with many strangers, you may pass out a few slips for spectators to write questions on. Gather slips in a Changing Bag or Spirit Basket, as described to you earlier in the course. On all the duplicate slips, have the same question written, perhaps something dealing with a local problem. Have a spectator reach into bag or basket and remove a question, reading it aloud. You then untie the slates and show the answer.
A simple method of forcing a slip of paper involves the use of a soft, felt hat. Push crown of hat up to form two compartments. Place duplicate slips, all containing the same questions, in A.
Figures 30 and 31
Place right hand under compartment A, squeezing it tight from the outside to conceal duplicate slips.
After spectators have written slips, have them dropped into hat and they will fall into compartment B. While talking, pass hat to left hand, squeezing compartment B closed with left hand and releasing compartment A. Shake hat up and down to mix duplicates and have spectator select one. He brings out a duplicate, of course, containing the question you had written. Slates are opened to show answer to question.
The slate writing method is good for the mathematical problem in Lesson 8, in which various spectators call numbers and the total mysteriously appears on a card — in this case, on the slate.
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