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Not many days after the publication of the April issue of the "Magic Magazine" I received a very nice letter from a reader, Mr. Hawthorne, of Southend, who seems to like the idea of running an "Odds and Ends" column. He goes on to say . . . "Your 'Mysterious Misdeal' is a thing I have been showing my friends for several years, although I cannot offer a solution to the problem either."

Mr. Hawthorne then goes on to say . . . "As you appear to be interested in this type of thing I wondered if you have ever seen the following curious coincidence as well. If you have not and you consider it worthy of mention in your 'Focus' column, you have my permission to print it. I will give you the instructions and if you carry them out as you read them you will be able to follow the effect easily.

"Take any two packs of cards and have them shuffled. Place them side by side, on the table and face down. Using the right hand for one and the left hand for the other, start turning the cards over and laying them in front of their respective packs. Turn them over symmetrically one card at a time from each pack. Now the strange thing is that, although it must be thousands to one against it happening, somewhere in the 'deal' you will find two identical cards at identical places. You can safely bet on this, as I have never known it to fail. It may be necessary to go right down to the 51st card before it happens, but it will happen".

I immediately tried it out myself (I like to try such things 'on the nail') and sure enough it did happen, also, strangely enough, at the 47th card. As Mr. Hawthorne, and maybe other readers, will be interested to learn, there are several versions of this 'curiosity', so . . . while the subject is still warm, and chiefly because there has been an unavoid-ab'e hold-up in some illustrations for an article i had planned for this issue. I will deal with these card curios here and now.

Wherever possible, I like to find a good use for such rarities and you will see that I have managed to hedge one or two into card tricks or effects of a sort. I hope that, at least, they will cause you a little amusement.

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