Four Aces and a Joker



This "Do as I Do" routine makes use of a method little known even to well versed performers. The method has been used elsewhere, but the effect itself is new.

Effect.— Two decks are borrowed. A volunteer assistant selects one deck, the performer uses the other. Standing back to back, but across room from each other, and with a small table before each one, each shuffles and cuts his deck, places it face down on his table, and cuts off about one-third of the cards from top of deck. Each then shuffles the one-third pack he holds and performer points out that if assisting spectator has followed instructions, each should have between ten and twenty cards in his hands. To verify this, each counts the cards he holds, without disclosing the number to the other.

While retaining cards already in hands, each cuts remainder of pack on table into two piles. Onto the right hand packet on table each now counts off from cards still in hand a number of cards equal to the last digit of the total number in his hand. (For example, if there is a total of 17 cards in hand, 7 are counted off onto right hand pile. If the total number was 14, each would count off 4). (It makes no difference whether or not performer and spectator count off different numbers, since neither knows how many the other is counting off). When this has been done, each deals onto the left hand packet on table a number of cards equal to the other digit in the total number. (For example, if the total originally was 17, one card would be counted off. If the total was twenty, two would be counted off. Usually, the number counted off onto the left hand packet will be one.) The two packets on the table now are put together in any order, and each shuffles the cards remaining in hands. After shuffling, the packets are turned face up by each, and the bottom card is noted and memorised, after which the packets again are turned face down and placed on TOP of the respective packs on respective tables, and the packs are squared up.

Now, for the first time, performer approaches spectator and exchanges packs with him. Each runs through the pack he just received and removes the card he noted in the other deck. Needless to say, the cards are identical when exposed.

Method.— Follow the above directions with deck in hand. Use only one deck in practising. Forget about the performer's deck. That is used merely for misdirection. If the directions are followed carefully, the card selected by the spectator always will be the ninth card from the top of the deck. Performer actually pays no attention to card he originally turns up while doing the effect. Upon receiving spectator's deck he merely looks for and removes the ninth card from the top of the deck. Spectator, of course, remembers card he originally turned up and removes its duplicate from performer's pack.

There is only one chance for error. If the spectator cuts twenty cards or more (which rarely happens), his card will be 18th from top. As a precaution, when locating 9th card, performer also should locate 18th card and bring it to top. Then, if necessary, he may execute a top change after seeing card exposed by spectator at finish.

This is the first part of a series of four, to be continued.


Now yoi. get in there for a change."
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