It's always been my dream to have an act where you simply walk on, perform, and then leave, with no break-down and collecting a fat paycheck in route. Of course, this dream act would also have to be astonishing and entertaining.
The following series of effects represents a body of work that I was going to assemble and market. For various reasons, mainly
laziness in mass-producing the necessary props, I decided to give it away to my brethren in mentalism. You may send your love-offerings to me directly.
Let me say at the outset that there are no new ideas here. I've simply taken standard items and routined them to fit inside a wallet.
I like to do the first portion of the show completely out of pocket, and devised a system that allows me to do just that. When I speak before civic clubs, such as Rotary and Kiwanis, I don't like to drag in a tableload of props. In my ever-increasing desire for efficiency, over the course of time I've compressed my act into as few props as possible. The following series of routines will play strong, and for the last two years have comprised the core of my mental act. I stretch the act to forty-five minutes by adding a Book Test and a Blindfold routine, but I've also performed the act just as you are about to read it.
Some preparation is required, as well as proficiency in standard mentalism techniques. You will need a wallet of the signed-card-in-envelope variety. The LePaul wallet is good, but for this routine I prefer the Balducci Wallet. This is a wallet that contains a small notepad, which acts as a slide to allow you to load a card into the zippered compartment behind the pad. This wallet requires some slight modifications for our purposes.
First, you must gimmick it to allow you to load a folded business card into an envelope inside the zippered compartment. To accomplish this, remove the notepad/slide and trim the cardboard backing down to about 1 1/2" long. Round the corners for easy handling. Construct an identical flap from the discarded cardboard and attach it to the wallet, so that it will act as the back side of the channel feeding the folded card into the envelope. The envelope I use is a type I obtain from a florist supply house. It's smaller than a letter envelope, and the front almost completely consists of a transparent window. This style of envelope is used to put greeting cards in, which are then attached to flower arrangements. This envelope is prepared by tearing a slit on the flap side as shown, and then sealing it shut. The envelope is fed into the zippered side of the wallet, making sure the tabs go into the slit.
You can forego this preparation by using a LePaul wallet, which is already gimmicked to allow loading into the envelope.
There should be a pocket on the other side of the wallet. This pocket contains the rest of your act:
Five index cards secretly marked 1-5.
A stack of coin envelopes prepared for Fourth Dimensional Telepathy. Five five-dollar bills.
In addition, you must have your favorite pocket-writing setup in (where else?) your pocket, a Swami Gimmick, and five or six pencils.
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Today I'm going to teach you a fundamental Mentalism technique known as 'cold reading'. Cold reading is a technique employed by mentalists and charlatans and by charlatan I refer to psychics, mediums, fortune tellers or anyone that claims false abilities that is used to give the illusion that the person has some form of super natural power.