November 241973 SEWT

EFFECT: The exact perception an audience will have of this effect will differ slightly from version to version. The basic effect, however, is relatively straightforward and consistent. Four Kings are removed from the deck, signed and openly placed in the performers sleeve, in which, the audience is told, you have a card cheat's Holdout. The Kings vanish and arrive, unexpectedly, in the deck, positioned for a game of Poker. This is proven when the cards are dealt. The performer suggests that this is surprising to him since what has happened is rather magical and magicians are known to prefer Aces. The hand of Kings is then revealed to have changed to four Aces. Gamblers, alleges the performer, commonly carry the Kings in their wallets, like money in the bank. The performer then reveals the signed Kings in his wallet.

Before discussing the workings of this effect, a bit of its history should be shared. It is a bit complex but I think instructive. On Saturday, November 24, 1973, Pat Cook performed an effect for me in which the signed Kings vanished from his sleeve and appeared in a Poker hand. It was a novel presentation for a vanish and reappearance of four cards. It seemed to me at the time that, as a result of under-exploitation, the effect was weaker than it might have been: The Kings being signed aroused an expectation that there would be some reason to doubt the same Kings were being used throughout, or that they would arrive somewhere "impossible." Moreover, the idea of having the Kings signed at the beginning, as always, seemed burdensome and illogical if it was not going to become obviously crucial. In retrospect these points may not have been completely valid, but the signing did slow down the routine for what might be judged too little pay-off. In any case, that evening I conceived and explained to an old friend, Bill O'Hanlon what follows here as Method 1.

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