Dr Stanley Jaks

I^HE MENTALIST takes a copy of the latest newspaper which he asks a member of the audience to tear so that it is quartered. All the pieces are distributed to members of the audience, each being asked to concentrate on the centre portion of the paper they hold. The mentalist then divines four of these thoughts, givings details of words, pictures, etc. The persons concerned are asked to remain silent for the moment. The reason is soon seen, for the mentalist, as a climax to his experiment, locates the four people. As each one is located the truth of the mentalist's statements is confirmed.

The method involves a principle which I don't think has been used before. We will assume that you have an English newspaper consisting of five pages (the actual number is arbitory) which means that if the paper is quartered there will be some twenty pieces. If as the quarters are torn they are placed one upon the other in sequence, the third, eighth, thirteenth and eighteenth pieces will all constitute part of the third page. Therefore, if in advance you memorise those portions of the third page which constitute, when torn, the centre portions of the quarters, all that is necessary for a successful performance is to know which members of the audience have these pieces when the twenty pieces are distributed. The careful fellow will do the tearing and distribution himself, whilst the more successful one will see that the tearing and distribution is done by a spectator.

The presentation is all showmanship, for the secret being simple makes little or no demand upon the conjuring technique of the performer.

Once the information gleaned has been spoken aloud (and if thought necessary, written on a board) the finding of the four holders of the pieces in the most dramatic manner brings the effect to a climax.

This can be easily performed as an impromptu item with a borrowed newspaper. All that the performer need do is to note the varying items that occur on the puge three of each leading daily. At the most it means learning twenty items by means of memorising or alternatively, for the lazy man, a scribbled key on a card could be made use of.


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