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thumb out of the TIP the right fingers then start to smooth the paper before shaping it into a cone.

Fig. 11 is the normal procedure one would usually adopt as the starting point for shaping a cone. You will notice that the first finger tip of the right is introduced into the THUMB TIP at this point and the paper rolled around it. When the thing is completed the THUMB TIP is already inside but as far as the spectators are concerned all you have is an empty paper cone.

Retain the small cone in the left hand. Show the right hand back and front and then slowly reach in, grip the tail end of the first match, place the ball of the left thumb over the edge of the THUMB TIP and pull the match out with the right. It comes out alight. The reason for placing the left thumb on the edge is to prevent the rest of the gimmick coming out or being unduly exposed.

You proceed in this way until the third match is produced. Hold it up to view in the right fingers while the left slides into the cone and incidentally into the THUMB TIP. The right now touches the point of the cone with the flame setting it alight. Allow the flame to nearly consume the cone and then drop it on an ash tray. The THUMB TIP remains on the left thumb for later disposal and is never noticed . See Fig. 12.

Certain places usually provide large bowl ashtrays with a bed of loose sand. If you are anywhere near one of these when performing merely drop the burning cone into it and at the same time you get rid of the THUMB TIP in the most natural manner. The sand will of course muffle the sound of the THUMB TIP when you discard it.

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