## Ae Curiosity

Some months ago I overheard some small boys trying to puzzle each other with various questions. One of the latter interested me very much, and the following little effect was evolved.

The performer invites one of the children in his audience to help him in a magical spelling trick, and he hands his willing helper a slate with a piece of chalk. He asks the audience to name an animal with three letters (see Magical Mentalia, '' A Psychological Trick). The answer is invariably "CAT". The helper is asked to write or print the word " Cat " without anyone seeing it. The performer then displays a large pack of letter cards, and invites another volunteer to mix them thoroughly. He then covers the cards with a large handkerchief, and explains that by magic he will make the assistant choose three cards to make the word CAT. The volunteer cuts the cards through the handkerchief and the next three cards are taken. The performer takes the first card and, looking at the slate, says " C—that's correct, but he carelessly shows it to the audience. It is actually an " M ". He repeats the same performance with the second card, which is an " O " and not an " A ", and finally with the last card, a " Q," placing the cards back out on a stand. By this time the audience will be yelling its head off, and there should be plenty of byplay. In conclusion, the cards are turned rouiid, and the audience is " made " to see that the cards do actually form a " Cat."

### REQUIREMENTS.

These are simple. An ordinary slate with chalk and a stand as shown. This consists simply of an upright fixed to a square of wood. On the upright are screwed three bulldog clips at equal intervals as shown in the illustration. A pack of Lexicon cards or preferably some larger cards with the three bearing the letters M, O and Q emphasised as shown. Lastly, a large handkerchief.

It is necessary, as will be seen in the illus tration, that the letter," M " should be so drawn that it makes two reasonable " ears ", and that the " O " should be much smaller than the ," O " which forms part of the " Q ". This last named should, as shown, completely fill the card.

### TO PERFORM.

Have the vital cards face up on the table and cover them with the handkerchief. When the remaining cards have been mixed, place them on top of the three and at the same time pick up the handkerchief and show. Place the pack of cards under the handkerchief for the reverse in the usual manner as the boy cuts the pack, thus forcing MOQ.

In placing the cards one at a time into the clips, see that the middle card, " O ", is placed as in the illustration (i.e., the " M " and " Q " cards overlap it). Thus, when the stand is turned round a good representation of a cat is found.

Build up the effect with the usual showmanship, a la the Die Box, and disclose your assistant's success in the proper manner.

Bulldog clips screwed onto stand.

Showing new the ■ •6"r çaro Is placed 1b relation to the "H* t

Bulldog clips screwed onto stand.

Showing new the ■ •6"r çaro Is placed 1b relation to the "H* t

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