Martin Breese, who is a good friend of ours, is currently advertising an effect called "Puzzled" or "What Puzzles Me" or some such name. It is credited in the advert as being my invention (me being Walt Lees). Although I was of some assistance to Martin with the preparation of this item, I am not quite so sure that I contributed sufficiently to be given all of the credit. In fairness to both Bob Farmer and Peter Kane, I would like to give a brief history of the small part that I played in the development of this particular routine.
Some months ago, I was at Martin's studio, when he showed me a manuscript from Bob Farmer, which detailed a novel reworking of Peter Kane's "Gipsy Curse" effect. Bob's routine differed quite significantly from the original and had much to commend it. Being a knowledgable and thorough card man, Bob Farmer had given a detailed description of the workings and discussed several variations. Martin felt and so did I, that this was not the most commercial way to offer the routine to the fraternity. He asked me if I could ghost write the instructions; a service which I occasionally perform for different dealers.
I agreed and took the manuscript home. On going through the routine, I was very much taken with it but felt that the introduction of the Hamman Count would do much to streamline the thing. Also, while toying around with it, I Developed the patter theme. The re-written instructions were returned to Martin, who mailed a copy to Bob Farmer. Bob wrote back to say that he did not like my use of the Hamman Count and that its introduction made the trick a different one. I personally disagreed and suggested to Martin that he put out the two
handlings (the one which I had written up and a rewritten one that Bob sent in) as a package.
After that, I thought no more about it. Recently, however, several people have mentioned the trick to me. Whenever they have done so, they have given me the impression that they regard it as my effect. I would like to set the record straight. The routine belongs to Bob Farmer and Peter Kane. My sole contribution being the introduction of the Hamman Count and the patter theme. Much as I would like to be able to take credit for the whole thing (it is a very good routine) in all honesty I cannot.
This month sees a welcome return of Barrie Richardson to these pages. Barrie was over here a few weeks ago. As luck would have it Phil Goldstein also happened to be here, to appear at Bristol Convention. The three of us were able to meet up for a session, one evening.
Barrie, who is no novice, when it comes to mental and memory work was completely bowled over by some of Phil's ideas and magic in this sphere. So was I, but that does not count as it is not a branch of magic that I know much about. I am little more than a layman, when memory systems and mental calculations are at stake. What can I say, as an ignoramus, is that Phil is both impressive and, more importantly, entertaining. He tells me that he is getting more and more in demand as a cabaret entertainer. I only hope that he does not get too busy to give us the benefit of his fertile and highly creative mind.
Barrie has given several items, one of which is in this issue. They are all first class, as one would expect from this talented and experienced performer.
even see a television programme is when I am visiting friends. Last year I saw two programmes so, as you can see, I have few friends!
The reason that I mention this is because I recently received a copy of the T.A.T. Papers, edited by Pat Page. Even though I do not have, and do not want, a videa, I still enjoyed reading this little mag. If you do not know what the; T.A.T. Papers are, then I suggest that you drop a line to Pat Page at Sound of Magic Video, 5 Back Hill, London E.C.I. You will not regret it.
Being one of those eccentrics, who do not possess a T.V. set, the current video boom has passed right over my head, completely, or almost completely, unnoticed. The only time that I ever previously determined X's coincides with a space you have chosen for one of your O's, I lose ..."
The spectator clearly has a great advantage here — and yet, when you reveal your prediction card, it is seen that you have played a winnin| row of X's, without entering any of the spectator's chosen spaces.
The method here depends on the Velleda Pen. This item is now quite easily obtained. It will produce a line much like any other marking pen, but when used on a special paper (also easily purchased), the line can be immediately erased with a wipe of your thumb.
The prediction card uses just such special paper for its writing surface. Using a permanent (i.e., non-Velleda) marking pen, draw a Tic Tac Toe layout. Now, with the Velleda pen, fill in X's in all nine spaces.
When the spectator makes his/her play, you simply use your thumb(s) to wipe away all but a winning row of X's. No matter how you erase, the layout will not be affected thanks to the permanent ink used in drawing it.
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