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Sitante Mwanatuf

Although the psychic worker might like to use this, it is quite acceptable in an ordinary magic programme. It is direct and easy to follow.

Three packs of cards in their cases are introduced. Two are removed, and after being genuinely shuffled are placed respectively in two stemmed glasses, faces away from audience. The third pack is left in its case on the table. Two spectators are invited to assist, and their task is simple, for all they have to do is to cut a few cards from the face of each pack and count them. We will suppose that the first cuts twelve cards and the second seventeen. " That's funny," remarks the conjuerer, " twelve from seventeen leaves five. Do you realise that without knowing either of you gentlemen, I knew that the difference in your selection would be five ! Here is the proof " (as he makes this remark the third pack of cards is removed from its case and a third spectator is approached). " On one of these cards I wrote something to the effect that the difference would be five cards." The conjurer fans the pack faces towards the spectator. " Will you please remove that particular card ? " (The spectator does so.) " And now, sir, will you please read what I have written ? " The spectator reads out : "I have a premonition that five will be the difference of numbers cut." (The writing fills the card.) " Coincidence, you may rightly say," goes on the conjurer. " In a way you are right, but just notice that I have written this prophecy on the two of spades. Don't you think it something more than coincidence that these gentlemen should have both cut the shuffled packs at the identical card ? " The conjurer turns both glasses round, and the audience see that the face card of each pack is the two of spades.

The beauty of this effect lies in the unsuspected (by the audience) pay-offr namely, the revealing of the similar cards.

The requirements are simple, and consist of a rough and smooth forcing pack, two unprepared packs, two stemmed glasses (these should allow the pack when placed inside to protrude at least an inch and a-half), two small pieces of tin cut to the shape shown in the top left-hand corner of the illustration, some cellophane tape, and a soft pencil.

Preparation.—We will first of all assume that the force card in the rough and smooth pack is the two of spades. Taking the first two of spades, the conjurer writes in large letters with the pencil : "I have a premonition that you will each cut the same number of cards." On the second : " I have a premonition that one will be the difference of numbers cut," on the third : " Two will be the difference," and so on throughout the twenty-six cards. The chance of a difference of more than twenty-six is too remote, to be considered. In practice, nine will generally be the maximum. The indifferent rough-backed cards are now placed on top of the force cards, so that twenty-six pairs lie in front of you. Turn each pair over, and lightly, with a pencil, mark on the corner of the back of each force card the number indicated on its face. Taking the pair that includes the two of spades showing that the two cuts will be equal assemble the pack in this order :—

Difference of 25, 23, 21, 19, 17, 15, 13, 11, 9, 7, 5, 3, 1. No difference. Difference of 2, 4, 6. 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22, 24, 26.

This pack is now placed in its card case.

From the other two packs remove the two of spades and two indifferent cards. Place the little angle bracket on the back of each two of spades, secure by means of cellophane tape, and then giving each indifferent card a coating of glue on its face glue it to the back of each two of spades. Dry under pressure, and you will then have two two of spades " each with a tongue of metal continued on page 34

STRANGE HARMONY—continued from page 33

protruding at right angles (the tongue, incidentally, is to the back of the card). Each two of spades is now trimmed as shown in second illustration. These faked cards are now placed second from face of each pack, and the latter placed in the respective card cases. The two glasses are placed respectively right and left of the conjurer's table.

Presentation.—The pack of rough and smooth cards is taken and placed in a prominent position, after which one of the packs containing the faked card is removed from its case, fanned, and given a shuffle which is genuine, the faked card is left near the face of the pack. The pack is then dropped face away from the audience into the glass which is on the left-hand side of the conjurer's table. The other pack is removed from its case, similarly treated, and placed in the glass on the right-hand side. Two spectators are invited to assist. They are placed each side of and just in front of the table. " I want 3'ou each to cut a small number of cards from the face of each pack, just like this." Here the performer illustrates by sliding up a number of cards from the glass. Because the two of spades is safely anchored, and because of the cut-away part at the sides, this card is-left on the face (this was described for use as a force in one of Hugard's Annuals, and seems to have been completely overlooked). Turning to the assistant on the other side he demonstrates for him too, and inci dentally on each occasion the cards cut by the conjurer are returned to true front of the glass. The position now is that although the audience and the assistants are unaware of this fact, the face card of each pack is now the two of spades. The conjurer now positions the spectators saying : " Now, I want neither of you to know how many cards the other cuts, so just place your hands round round the cards." Standing between them, the conjurer places their hands so that their fingers touch the sides of the pack. " All you have to do is to just cut a few from the face of the pack as I did. Don't look at the cards yourself, and please don't look at each other, as I want you to act independently." The spectators are so carefully placed that they cannot see the face card, in other words, their right and left arms respectively are held back at a slight angle. Each cuts the cards in an upward motion, and they are asked to count the packet they are holding. Whatever the answer (although the best one is when they announce the same number) the conjurer picks up the card case on the table, removes the rough and smooth pack, and going to another spectator slowly fans the cards in front of him. With the pencil mark on the back of the cards, the rough faced card bearing the correct prediction is pushed to one side as its position is reached in the fan. The correctness of the prediction being acknowledged, the conjurer goes on to secure his second and greater effect by turning round the glasses and showing the similar cards.

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