No Donkey

you that he really did go. (Take out Carrot Card by slightly opening folder, point to card and say), you can see where the donkey started to nibble it. (Show card both sides and place down on table).

That's the carrot, now let's find the farmer. (Put fingers in top of folder and take out Farmer Card, but before you actually do so, slide the Word Card along, so that about two inches show beyond edge of folder at right side). Well here is the farmer (show both sides) and that leaves the barn empty. (Put Farmer Card down and pretend to peep in top of folder, then apparently notice card sticking out of side and push it in quickly).

Yes, the barn is empty. (Open folder about an inch and look in. (Here the children will be shouting all sorts of things, for they saw the card sticking out, and they demand to see it. Performer very reluctantly removes card—its back to the audience—and it is seen to be blank).

There you are, I told you the donkey had gone. (You now get loud shouts of "turn it over" "turn it round" etc., and after the usual by-play, performer turns it over and they read "Sorry—No Donkey").

(Card is then placed down and folder opened to show empty back and front). You see he really has gone, (put down folder and point to stable) and you may not know it, but he has gone back to his stable. (Go over to stable and with a surefire smile—open door).

There he is safe and sound (here children will shout "he isn't there", you now look and appear dismayed and act accordingly . Close door of stable and hold stable in right hand). I wonder what's happened, he should be in here. (Open door again and have a look). Perhaps he's fallen on the floor or somewhere. (As you say this start looking at floor, turn to look under table, still holding stable, as you turn, etc., make sure the children get a good view of card on back of stable . As soon as they spot it they will shout, "There he is", performer appears to misunderstand and looks about etc. This is played upon for little while, children keep shouting, then performer appears to understand and turns stable round revealing donkey). So the artful donkey was hiding behind his stable all the time. Anyway, the farmer decided to keep him, so he was happy for the rest of his life.

The effect which is now familiar with magicians as "DYEING THE SILKS", has passed through several stages of evolution since its inception and introduction by the immortal David Devant . In its original form, a number of white silks when pushed through an apparently innocent paper cylinder became magically impregnated with the different colours of the rainbow.

However, one of the later developments of this idea soon became a hot favourite amongst active magicians . In its new character the paper cylinder was done away with. A square of white silk was made to change colour by merely passing it through the closed fingers of the hand.

As both methods have their respective positions in magic, it would, therefore, be futile to try and stick a comparison of preferences between them. There are occasions when the hand method will be found to fulfil the role more adequately than would be possible with the original model. In other words, there is a time and place for each of the two versions.

In our present writing, we will not concern ourselves with the original rendition of the trick but explain in detail our own handling and interpretation of the younger model.

I always believed that in this later version of the trick the effect was brought about too quickly and hence the whole thing seemed too brief to be listed by itself as an independent item of magic. Consequently by weaving a little plot around the original idea it has been stretched, as you will see, to fill a full five to seven minutes of entertainment-cum-mystery culminating in a surprise climax.

"The Chameleonic Silk"

The proceedings as witnessed by the onlookers go like this. The magician introduces a square of green silk. He exhibits it from both sides and explains that the cocoon for it came from a very remarkable caterpillar which imparted to the silk certain peculiar characteristics.

The square of green silk is then pushed in slowly through one end of the left fist and it emerges as RED from the other. The magician then unmistakably proves that he has nothing else m his hands beside the RED silk. However, he then adds that if he left it at that many would have doubted his tale about the strange caterpillar. As he does not wish to illude them, he will for once violate the ethics of the magicians and tell them exactly how he caused the green silk square to change to RED.

The magician then proceeds with a pseudo explanation of the trick and when he concludes not only are they none the wiser but the whole thing ends up in a surprise !

The usual hand gimmick for the dyeing effect is used to bring about the change of colour. But as 1 am going to reveal presently it is handled differently from what has been generally established as the orthodox mode of production. The accompanying series of action photographs will, I hope .simplify my task in conveying to you what I have to explain.

In addition to the hand colour changing gimmick, you will require one RED and two GREEN silk squares. The dimension of the silks, will of course depend on the size of your gimmick. However, I am accustomed to using

12" squares as my gimmick will accommodate two of these conveniently. You will next want a three feet length of picture cord and about half a dozen pieces of miniature garments as used to dress up dolls. The garments are evenly spaced on the cord and stitched in position. The solitary RED silk fis tucked into one end of the gimmick. One of the GREEN squares is slid under your shirt collar on the right side. Push one end of the cord under your shirt from the front, through the arm hole and then anchor it in position against the outer side of your left forearm with a rubber band. This means that if you were to pull up your coat sleeve, the cord and garments will still be bidden by the shirt sleeve.

Come forward with the gimmick in position on your right thumb. Fig. 1. illustrates this. However, since the green silk is also held in the same hand the presence of the gimmick will pass unnoticed.

1. Gimmick in position on right thumb.

3. First finger acting as slop during turn of silk

1. Gimmick in position on right thumb.

2. Gimmick hidden behind silk.

3. First finger acting as slop during turn of silk

4. Corner of silk covers gimmick.

2. Gimmick hidden behind silk.

4. Corner of silk covers gimmick.

Now the left hand takes hold of the adjoining corner of the silk and holds it up to exhibit the front. Fig. 2. is an exposed view from the back showing how the right thumb points towards the floor. The arms are next crossed to bring the original rear side of the silk to the front. However, before doing so slide the right thumb in and press it against the second finger. The reason for this advice is that the first finger of the same hand will then act as a convenient 'stop' during the turn in order to prevent the silk square being moved too far out and expose the gimmick accidentally. See Figure 3.

Having displayed the green square on both sides, move the left hand away temporarily and shake the silk with the right a couple of times. Fig. 4 shows how the silk is held by its top corner between thumb and first finger when shaken. The gimmick is still hidden behind the silk.

The left hand now approaches the right and then strokes down the silk once and then goes up again to repeat the same action. However when the left approaches the right for the second time, the fingers of the former close over the silk as well as the gimmick. The right and the left hand now travel in opposite directions. Fig. 5 depicts the left hand half way down the green silk during the stroking action.

The gimmick, by this ruse has now been transferred naturally and indetectably from over the right thumb into the partly closed left fingers. The right now begins to poke the green silk into the left fist from the bottom. The left thumb rests on the top end of the gimmick sealing the exit, to prevent the RED silk making a too sudden and premature appearance. The right fingers now reach into the thumb end of the fist and pull to view just a little bit of the RED silk. Alternately the right fingers poke a little of the green into the fist and then go on top to pull out a little of the RED. Fig. 6 shows about half the green poked into the fist and half red emerging from the top. Little by little all of the green is eventually pushed right into the fist, (really into the gimmick) and the red pulled away completely in the right. At this point the red silk is displayed by the top corner in the right hand in the same manner as shown 'in fig. 4. The left hand is now held in a relaxed state at about waist level. Fig 7 illustrates the exposed view of the left hand. Please observe how the gimmick is retained in the crotch of the thumb and at right angles to the fingers. The fingers in turn are slightly apart and from the front conveys the tacit suggestion that the hand is empty.

The right hand now pulls the red silk over the left hand which is apparently empty. You do this a couple of times as though stroking the silk while giving the spiel for the coming explanation. When repeating the stroking action for the third time, the right middle finger tip is pushed slightly into the gimmick (from the bottom) and the left fingers close over the silk as it is pulled through. The right fingers are bent in at the same time. This action will take the gimmick away from the left. Fig. 8 and 9 will convey more adequately than words what I am trying to explain.

After the red silk has been pulled completely through, retain the left fingers still in their closed position and say "Perhaps you suspect that the green silk is hidden here". Synchronising the gesture to the words, open the left fingers one at a time and show the empty interior. You now go on to say that actually you pushed the green silk up your sleeve. By way of illustration place the

5. Left stealing gimmick during stroking action.

6. Green silk in process of being changed to red.

5. Left stealing gimmick during stroking action.

6. Green silk in process of being changed to red.

tips of all four fingers into the opening of the left sleeve and open it out wide as though indicating the location of concealment . . . The object of this gesture may seem purposeless, at first, but it is just planned to get the gimmick out of the way immediately after the left is shown empty. Fig. 10 portrays this point in the trick.

Having shown the left sleeve, the right again passes the silk through the left hand as before in imitation of the stroking action and the gimmick transferred once more to the latter.

You have now come to the point of teaching them how the trick is really done. You explain that the green silk is now hidden in your left sleeve. You are going to teach them how to exchange the red which they now see for the green that is in your sleeve. Close the fingers of the left hand into a loose fist again. Now poke the red silk from the TOP of the fist this time into the gimmick. You will find that if my description has been followed the red silk will be entering the same end of the gimmick into which the green was pushed earlier. Under cover of the visible action of poking in the red, the 2nd and 3rd fingers grip the lip of the gimmick and bend in while the poking action is still Simulated with the first finger.

The left hand is now extended with the fingers still closed as though containing the red silk. The right thumb and first finger then pinch the coat sleeve and pull it up as though getting ready to demonstrate the actual exchange of the two silks. As the right pulls up the sleeve, the gimmick with its contents is dropped into the outer breast pocket. Fig 10 shows how the gimmick is got rid of secretly.

Having disposed of the evidence, you can tell them that as they have seen (?) you push the red up the sleeve and when you open your fingers they will find the green is back again. Open the fingers slowly and much to their surprise they will find the hand empty. "Of course", you say. "some-

7. Red siilk displayed . Green is in gimmick now.

9. Showing how gimmick is stolen in right. 10. Gimmick about to be disposed of in pocket. 11. The Climax.

7. Red siilk displayed . Green is in gimmick now.

8. Tip of middle finger inserted into gimmick as red pulled over hand.

times the trick does go wrong and the green wanders to the most unexpected places". Reach behind your collar and bring out the duplicate green to view. Then you pretend you overheard someone refer to the RED. With appropriate remarks you now reach inside your shirt sleeve and slowly drag out the clothes line into the open as depicted in Figure 11.

Harber writes on Roxy

In the November issue Roxy asked for comments or suggestions regarding his "Percepto" Routine. May I make one or two which you may find suitable for publication in the December issue

There must be dozens of ways of coding one card to a Medium but I want to keep as near as possible to Roxy's system and not make it any more difficult to work.

To my mind there are two snags in his routine. One—during the simple operation of running quickly through the pack for the second spectator it seems a bit risky having to look for one definite key-card. Two—if the medium is genuinely mind-reading she should not need to handle the cards at all—it will just seem that she is seeking some clue, which, of course, is what she is doing.

For the latter snag. I suggest that the cards are put back into their box and that this is held to her forehead. The Key-card on the bottom of the pack is glimpsed through a window in the box which is merely a piece cut away from the box at one of the corners. The 'window' may or may not have a moving flap as you wish.

If the audience are not going to be on top of you a better way out of this would be to place the cards back on the table face up. The medium merely glances at the Key-card as she passes by the table, and takes up her position some distance away. This will take attention right away from the rest of the pack and they will be forgotten.

Alternatively, to obviate both snags, let us suppose the chosen card is the nine of hearts. When fanning the pack for the second spectator, the magician looks for any other nine and breaks the pack there to bring it to the bottom. This gives him three chances instead of one for a Key-card. Pack is put on table face up and the suit is indicated by visualizing each of the table's corners as a suit. Pack is placed near the appropriate corner—in this case, hearts. A glance in passing suffices for the Medium, once again.

If you would prefer not to have another card of the same value showing in cases where some one in the audience can see the face-up card, here is another suggestion which is even easier for the magician.

He just makes sure that the correct suit— Hearts in our example—is on the bottom of the pack. Any one of the remaining twelve will do. The pack is then placed on the table in such a way as to indicate the value—i.e. nine. For this the table is looked upon as an imaginary clock face and so the pack in our example will be put at centre position of the left hand side. The King's position is the centre of the table.

Finally, for this suggestion, if you don't even want the suit on show, then use Roxy's opposite suit arrangement and so have a Club showing at the nine position.

Hoping you will find some use for the fore going. I am.

Yours sincerely.

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