Polished Pushoff

This method of doing a perfect block push-off for a double lift will be discarded out of hand by some readers as a pipe dream. I assure you it is not. Mr. Elmsley was confident enough of its practicality to feature it in his first lecture, and a few select cardmen, such as Gordon Bruce, have long used if in their work. There is a knack to the sleight. If, however, you read the description carefully, you will possess the information required to master this curious technique. Begin by holding the...

Flight To Witch Mountain

Effect Here is an early Elmsley treatment of a classic plot. The four queens are removed from the deck and dealt face-down into a row. Three more cards are placed onto each queen. Then, one by one, three queens mysteriously leave their piles to join the fourth. Method As was mentioned in the introduction to this chapter, in 1954 Mr. Elmsley became intrigued by the novel approach taken in a slow-motion assembly titled Assembly of the Jacks (ref. T. H. Hall's Testament of R. W. Hull, pp. 45-51 ....

Nd ACES

Effect The four aces are removed from the pack and laid out in a row on the table. Someone freely nominates one of the aces and three indifferent cards are dealt onto it. The ace on the bottom of this packet is displayed once more and a magical gesture is made over the other three aces. When these are turned face-up, they are found to be indifferent cards and all four aces are shown to have gathered in the selected ace pile. The plot is that of a classic ace assembly. However, Mr. Elmsley has...

Where Its At

Effect This is an impossible seeming location of a selection, in which the performer does not touch the deck from first to last. The pack is handed to someone with the request that she give it any number of straight cuts she desires. After this, she cuts the deck into three face-down packets on the table and peeks at the top card of the center packet. She then buries her card by dropping both of the other packets onto it. To this point the performer has been denied the sight of a single card...

Elmsleys Ghost

Elmsley's early notes on his various false counts and displays, we came across a method for Bert Douglas' Ghost Card Trick. I thought that an application of the ghost count to the trick for which it was named would be of interest. While there is nothing revolutionary In the construction of the method, it is a great improvement over Mr. Douglas' original handling, and the effect is a particularly strong one for laymen. In essence, a card is selected and returned...

Cigarette Vanish

Effect This vanish of a cigarette can be used either as an opening sequence in a cigarette manipulation routine or as an impromptu bit of business. In effect the spectators see you remove a cigarette from its pack, tamp its end on the pack, then go to light it. As the lighter is raised, the cigarette in the other hand is found to have vanished. Aside from the lighter, the hands are otherwise empty. Method To begin, bring the cigarette pack from your right coat pocket and, with the left fingers,...

Ambitious To The

It is unlikely that any magician interested in card magic has not at some time in his study of the subject experimented with and performed an Ambitious Card routine. Mr. Elmsley is no exception. What follows is the final three-phase sequence in a routine be perfonned in the 1950s. The merits of its construction make it worth recording. At the start of the sequence, the chosen or ambitious card lies second from the top of the pack, a common posihon in such routines. In addition, the face-down...

Physical Medium

Effect Someone securely binds the performer's thumbs together with a short length of cord. The performer then reaches over his head, grabs the collar of his jacket and pulls the jacket over his head (Figure 212) until it falls, inside-out, in front of him over his arms and hands (Figure 213). He now freezes in position and withdraws into an intense state of concentration. Suddenly he makes a sharp motion with his arms and the jacket is thrown to the floor (Figure 214). His thumbs are seen to be...

The Four Blanks

Effect Four playing cards are shown to be blank that is, backs but no faces. Then faces suddenly appear on the cards aces. Only the packet of cards is used the deck is not involved- there are no gimmicked cards (granting that a blank-faced card, though unusual, is not a gimmick) and the cards are examinable at the finish. Method Mr. Elmsley's inspiration here was Ralph W. Hull's Mental Photography or Nudist Deck, though the idea of changing a packet to blanks or, vice versa, blanks to printed...

Thoughts In Transit

Effect The plot is Dai Vernon's Penetration of Thought. Four cards are removed from one deck and their duplicates from another of contrasting back color. These eight cards are displayed and someone is asked to think of one. The four cards from each deck are now separated into two packets and the spectator is asked to name the card he thought of, and to indicate either of the two packets. The moment he does this, the performer causes his mental selection to fly to the chosen packet. That packet...

One At A Time Collectors

Effect The four aces are removed from the deck and set aside. Then three free selections are made, noted and returned to the pack. The performer picks up the face-up aces and displays them fronts and backs. He then squares them and spreads the cards again. Each time he does this, one of the selections appears face-up, until all three have been produced, alternating with the face-down aces. Method Roy Walton's popular Collectors was the basis for this slow-motion or progressive variation on the...

Break Time

The brea)c is perhaps the most frequently used tool in sleight-of-hand card magic. It is perceived by most magicians, both professional and amateur, as an elementary and easily mastered technique. This assumption is too often proven false, however, when we watch the work of others. It may not occur to us that our own technique when using breaks is as wanting as that of our self-deluding associates. Here are a few tips drawnfrom Mr. Elmsley's experience and recorded in private notes in the 1950s...

Fan Shuffle Strategies

The fan shuffle has long been popular with magicians, because it is reasonably easy to learn, yet looks thorough and impressively skillful. In addition, it disturbs the arrangement of the deck only minimally, for the only change in order is that the bottom half is moved intact to the middle of the top half. Over the years Mr, Elmsley has employed this shuffle in several clever ways. First we will discuss the use of the fan shuffle for controlling a card. It is a quick, efficient and elusive...

The Twister

Elmsley recalls, was the product of a dull afternoon at the office. As the title indicates, this is not a trick but a puzzle. It is a clever topological problem, which can be easily, almost magically, solved by its perpetrator, but is impossible for his victim. Mr. Elmsley suggests this puzzle as a palliative for ruffled egos, when there is in the audience that occasional individual who, no matter how entertainingly the magic is presented, perceives it as an intellectual combat...

New Techniques For The Rear Palm

Elmsley, after having read the chapter on the rear palm in Hugard and Braue's Expert Card Technique, became intrigued with this excellent but little used palm, and developed a number of techniques founded on it. This style of palming is particularly enticing, as it allows the fingers to spread and move independently, without exposing the palmed card. Yet, it is seldom employed. Mr. Elmsley believes there are four reasons for this. First, few tricks have ever...

First Phase

Pick up the blue-backed aces in your right hand, and the red-backed aces in your left, taking both packets face-down into dealing position. You can at this point fan both packets and exhibit them fronts and backs. Resquare the cards in dealing position when the display is finished. You will now deal simultaneously with both hands, forming two piles of cards with alternating back colors. Do so by thumbing off the top card of the left-hand packet face-down directly before you, at the same time...

Double Swap

Effect This next transposition seems a bit convoluted in its description, but in performance the effect is clear and baffling. The performer openly removes the two red aces from the pack. Fie then invites two members of the audience to choose cards. To ensure that no manipulation is possible, the perfonner uses the aces like forceps to remove each free selection from the deck. The two chosen cards are placed on the table and the red aces, being no longer needed, are slipped into the Lop of the...

Chosen Cards Across

Effect Here is another example of a venerable classic given an ingenious touch. Spectators count out two groups often cards. The first ten are wrapped in a handkerchief and held by a member of the audience. Three cards are freely selected and added to the second packet of ten, which is then held by another spectator. Without touching the cards, the performer causes the three selections to travel from the one packet to the other. The spectators themselves confirm that the second packet now...

Production Of Cigarettes In Holders

Rather than produee just cigarettes, as is done traditionally by magicians, some years ago Mr. Elmsley desired to produce cigarettes in cigarette holders. The cigarettes and holders measured more than twice the length of the cigarettes alone and seemed impossible to conceal and manipulate. To make such productions possible, Mr. Elmsley adapted a special gimmicked cigarette holder, marketed in the 1950s. He glued a hollow fake cigarette to the holder, and in this way constructed a...

Ring And Paper Clip

Effect The performer removes his finger ring and holds it in one hand. In the other he holds a common wire paper clip. He throws the ring into the opposite hand, a metallic click is heard and the hand is opened to show the paper clip now linked to the ring. The linking is instantaneous and cannot have been accomplished by normal means, as there is no surreptitious finger motion and the time is too short for covert manipulation. Method While theocracies will not be built on this stunt, it is a...

Bareaced Hofzinser

Effect The four aces are openly removed from the deck and given to a spectator. A card is selected and returned to the pack, where it is lost. The performer announces that the aces will aid him in divining the identity of the chosen card. One by one he takes the aces from the spectator, until only one remains. The suit of each ace taken is eliminated as a possibility. The spectator admits that the suit of the ace she holds indeed matches the suit of her card. Even more astonishing yet, when...

The Fourcard Trick

Bring out the packet, face-down, with the joker positioned third from the top. I'm going to show you a trick with four trick cards. The backs are blue. Give the packet an Elmsley count, displaying four blue backs. The count brings the red-backed joker to the face of the packet. But the faces are blank. Return the packet to the left hand and spread over the top two cards, letting three blue backs be seen. Take the two spread cards into the right hand and briefly expose their blank faces to the...

Magnetic Monte

Effect Three miniature magic wands are exhibited and one is shown to be magnetic. It picks up a safety pin or paper clip while the others do not. The wands are mixed and someone is asked to pick the magnetic one from the three. As in three-card monte, the three-shell game and similar propositions, the spectator never succeeds in choosing the correct wand yet the performer can find the magnetic wand every time. Method This is decidedly not a deep mystery. It is one of those puzzling challenges...

The Hookstrip Shift

This multiple shift resembles Cardini's ref. Greater Magic, pp. 546547) in that the shift is done under cover of an overhand shuffle. However, the strip-out action is just the reverse of Cardini's, and is better concealed. Let's assume we wish to control the four aces to the top of the pack from four different locations. Neatly fan the face-down deck in the left hand and insert the aces face-down into the fan at four different positions (Figure 57). Leave them protruding for roughly half their...

The Tabled Cover Reverse

The tabled cover reverse is a method for secretly reversing the top card of the deck and positioning it second from the top, while apparently turning the card face-down. It is of added interest that the deck rests on the table throughout the execution of the sleight. The reversal is extremely deceptive from the front viewing angle, but vulnerable at the sides. Consequently, the correct conditions for its performance must be chosen. Mr. Elmsley kept this sleight in reserve to baffle fellow...

Variations On Erdnases First Transformation

Erdnase's classic text, The Expert at the Card Table, the author details several color changes with cards (which he more precisely termed transformations). The first of these changes is one in which the second card from the face of the deck is secretly slipped from beneath the first and then over it, as the right hand momentarily covers the face of the pack (ref. The Expert at the Card Table, pp. 151-152). It is a well-known change to magicians, and a fine one, but few seem to perform...

New Pieces To An Old Puzzle

Effect Charles Jordan, in 1919, marketed a multiple assembly trick called Like Seeks Like. In it, four hats were lined up and the aces and court cards were removed from the deck. Each hat received a jack, queen, king and ace of matching suit. Yet, when the contents of the hats were next exhibited, all the aces had gathered in one, all the jacks in another, and so on. The plot was a fascinating problem, but Mr. Jordan's method was suitable only for platform or stage, as it entailed a rather...

The Emptyhanded Pack Switch

One problem that can arise when doing the standard pocket deck switch is that of hesitation or fumbling in the pocket as the one deck is dropped off and the other grasped. This is not surprising when one considers that fifty-two loose objects are being exchanged for fifty-two others. Practice can eliminate most lapses of this sort, and proper staging can disguise the rest, as has been adequately demonstrated above. The pocket deck switch about to be explained proposes an entirely different...

Snap Swap

Effect A free selection from a face-up deck is turned face-down and buried in the pack. A second selection is placed face-down under a spectator's hand. The deck is spread to locate the reversed first selection. Then a magical pass is made over the cards. This results in the transposition of the two selections the second is now in the deck, and the first under the spectator's hand, The attractiveness of this transposition lies in the casual, straightforward manner in which the cards are...

The Misdirection Rear Palm

A problem often experienced when stealing the top card of the deck into rear palm is that of positioning the right hand to receive the card without assuming an unnatural forward hand posture over the pack. Here is a solution in which the palm is executed during the action of pushing another card into the pack. The psychology is borrowed from Edward Mario's misdirection palm in which a card is stolen into classic palm (ref. The Cardician, pp. 55-57). The card you wish to palm must first be...

Apprentice Aces

Effect The performer shuffles the pack, then expertly cuts two aces from it. At this point he offers to teach the secret of this feat to a spectator. The spectator cuts the deck, then names an ace. Time card cut to is turned up it is the ace he specified. The spectator now mixes the deck, spreads it face-down before himself and pushes out a card. This random card turns out to be the fourth and final ace. Method Secretly cull the four aces to the top of the pack. Give the cards several...

Pick Of The Litter

Effect The deck is shuffled, then slowly spread through with the cards face-down. As the performer runs the deck from hand to hand, spectators are invited to touch cards along the way. Each card indicated is outjogged widely from the deck. When four cards have been chosen, they are stripped from the pack with the utmost fairness and turned face-up, only to find that the spectators have somehow unerringly located the four aces. Method The plot is classic, but Mr. Elmsley's method allows an...

Puncture

Effect The performer brings out a stack of his business cards, still wrapped in the paper band as it came from the printer. He draws one of the cards from the packet and shows it. A hole is seen punched through the card near one long edge (Figure 124). This hole has been reinforced with an adhesive cloth collar, such as stationers sell. The performer touches the hole with the tip of his thumb and drags it over the card from the side to the center, then to the inner end. The card is again...

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The Perpetual Cigarette

Effect The plot is the torn and restored cigarette, but with one important addition to the standard effect the cigarette is lit from start to finish. After the performer tears it in two and then restores it, he continues to smoke it as he performs. In 1954, Mr. Elmsley had the pleasure of performing this trick and three others for Paul LePaul, after which Mr. LePaul commented that he had never been so badly fooled in his life. When Slydini first came to England to lecture, in August 1958, Mr....

Serendipity

Effect Someone goes through the deck and removes three jacks. These jacks are introduced as the Three Princes of Serendip, who have a knack of making happy discoveries by accident. The performer removes two further cards, the faces of which he neither looks at nor shows. He alternates these with the jacks and perches the five-card packet in plain view in his breast pocket (Figure 19). The spectator is next asked to pick two cards from the pack. These are shown to everyone and can be signed by...

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Shale Fellow Well

Effect In this fast-paced routine, Edward Mario's Oil and Water is effectively combined with another classic plot, Follow the Leader. Four black cards and four red are alternated with each other. The mixing of the colors is unquestionably fair. Yet when the cards are next displayed, the colors have separated. The cards are openly mixed again, and again they mysteriously segregate. In trying to explain the mechanics behind these strange separations, the performer reveals that each color has a...

The Tipsy Turnover Pass

What follows is an original approach to the Herrmann turnover pass. Mr. Elmsley has applied an initial levering action to the sleight, which provides excellent cover and promotes the passage of the two packets. A get-ready is required. Instead of forming the usual break between the two halves, the top portion is stepped forward of the bottom portion for about three-eighths of an inch. This can be done surreptitiously as the right hand squares the deck in the left hand, or as the deck is cut and...

Repulsive Aces

Effect The four aces are removed from the deck. Two cards are then freely selected, noted and replaced in the pack. The performer now explains that all the cards in the pack have a magnetic field, and the aces, because they are the most important cards, have the strongest charge. The aces are turned end for end on the table. They are then picked up and one comer is touched lightly to the face of the deck. This acts like the identical poles of two magnets, repelling the first selection to the...

Ring On Silk

Effect A silk scarf is displayed and formed into an improvised bag. Into this is dropped a large metal ring (Figure 202). Aside from the scarf and ring, the performer's hands are obviously empty. Without a false move, he grasps two diagonally opposite corners of the gathered scarf and pulls them apart. As the scarf opens between the hands, the ring suddenly appears on its center (Figure 203). The scarf is unquestionably threaded through the ring, having in some strange way penetrated it. The...

Alex Elmsley

Alexander Elmsley has become, without the least deliberate effort of his own, both a bit of a legend and an enigma to the world of magic. The average magician of the last few decades knows of him mainly because of the famous false display count that bears his name. Those with a more than passing interest in card magic recognize Alex Elmsley as the inventor of several plots that have achieved the status of modern classics Between Your Palms, Point of Departure and to a lesser extent Diamond Cut...

Minor Triumph

Effect Ten random cards are removed from the deck and one is chosen by a spectator. The card is noted by him and returned to the packet. The packet is given a quick mix, after which the cards are clearly alternated face-up and face-down. The performer then gives the packet a long hard stare and begins to look slightly concerned. Tm sorry, he says. Something seems to have gone wrong. These cards are a bit sticky. Do you mind if we start again Presuming the audience is a tolerant and sympathetic...

The Undercut Slip

While exploring different approaches to the in-the-hands slip cut, Mr. Elmsley developed a second method, which approximates a more conventional manner of cutting the cards. The pack is held in a right-hand grip similar to that just explained The tip of the thumb is centered on the inner end and the second, third and fourth fingers lie at the outer end. Here, though, the tip of the forefinger is also placed at the outer end of the pack, near the left corner, where it can contact the edge of the...

The Elmsley Count

Elmsley Count

Before explaining the trick itself, the Elmsley count must be taught. I will describe the exact technique Mr. Elmsley detailed in his 1959 manuscript. Though many readers may be familiar with the actions of the Elmsley count, it is urged that the following description be studied, as it contains several fine points of handling that are not widely known. You will require four cards. Three are blue-backed and blank-faced. The fourth is a red-backed joker. With the packet held facedown, position...

Invisible Card In Cigarette

Effect If ever a magician feels the need to be humbled in his craft, he has only to ask a member of the public to imagine a magical effect that he would view as truly miraculous. This will often yield the most wonderful plots with little or no hope for a method. The next effect strikes me as such a plot however, Mr, Elmsley has a most practical solution to it. The performer asks someone in the audience who is a smoker to join him before the group. This person is asked to think of any card he...

On Misdirection

I would like to make a few observations on the subject of misdirection. It seems to me that many magicians have a wrong approach to misdirection. They think it is something that has to be brought in as an emergency measure for a move that is too bad to be hidden in any other way. Hey, look at the elephant Or, in the words of Herb Sellers, Some moves need an elephant. John Ramsay was a master of misdirection. Yet he never used strong misdirection. It almost never went further than the direction...

Sleeve Loading For The Cups And Balls

Cups and Balls routines almost invariably conclude with the production of large balls, fruits or vegetables. These final load items are commonly carried in the rear trousers pockets until required. Most professionals recognize that standard trousers pockets must be enlarged by a tailor to permit the smooth steal of such loads. Another method of concealment, though it has fallen out of fashion for no good reason, is to cariy the large loads in holders under the lower edge of the coat, as stage...

Fivecard

Effect This is a humorous and highly entertaining presentation of the Tommy Tucker trick, Six-card Repeat. When Mr. Elmsley devised it in the early 1950s, Six-card Repeat was acquiring among magicians a well-deserved reputation of being hackneyed. As is the fate of so many outstanding tricks, particularly those that are not difficult to perform, every magician wanted to do it, and most did. The only thing wrong with Six-card Repeat was that it suffered from overexposure. This was gravely...

The Visual Torn And Restored Newspaper

Effect The title efficiently sums up the effect. A newspaper is torn to pieces, then is magically restored. Several good methods exist for achieving this effect, but when Gene Anderson's newspaper tear was prominendy performed a few years back by Doug Henning, magicians seemed to lose sight of all others. It is rare to see anything but the Anderson method performed these days. This is to be regretted, as several of the prior methods had advantages well worth considering not the least of which...

Onehanded Center Steal

Taking the premise of the above side steal a bit further, Mr. Elmsley devised a one-handed method of extracting the card. It will take some work to master, and it is distinctly easier with bridge-width cards but it can certainly be done with a poker deck. While he did use this sleight in his youth, Mr. Elmsley now considers it suitable only for impressing fellow magicians. For public performance, other, easier techniques are to be preferred. The one-handed center steal, then, is explained here...

Card Fan Production

Here is a method of producing fans of cards for the stage manipulator. Mr. Elms ley developed this bare-hand production as an alternative procedure to the standard split fan technique. His goal was the elimination of the troublesome flash often encountered when the fan was dropped and simultaneously a portion of it was again back palmed. For those unfamiliar with the split fan technique invented, according to Dai Vemon, by a carnival contortionist named Ardo Lhe Frogman it can be found In...

The Climax Pack Switch

By this strategy the deck is switched in the act of producing two selections from the pockets. In your left coat pocket carry the deck you wish to switch into play, its back lying nearest your body. From the deck in use, have two cards selected, noted and returned. Control these two cards to the top of the pack. Then, while holding the deck face-down in left-hand dealing position, palm one of the selections in the right hand. The instant the card is palmed, adjust the deck from dealing grip to...

One Poor Lion

Effect The performer removes all the aces, kings, queens and jacks from the deck and performs a surprising multiple transposition with these cards. The transposition is made intelligible and entertaining by a moral tale about four lions and their postponed dinner. Method The effect is indirectly derived from Charles Jordan's Like Seeks Like, a trick marketed in 1919. See Charles T. Jordan Collected Tricks, pp. 87-88 and Encyclopedia of Card Tricks, Hugard revision, p. 344. For more information...

The Elmsley Colorchanging Knife Routine

Effect A red pocket knife is displayed and magically caused to turn blue. Just as mysteriously it changes back to red. The performer now admits that he uses a second knife to accomplish this change, and he brings a blue knife from his pocket. The blue knife is put back in the pocket and the red knife is changed slowly and visibly to blue. The knife in the pocket is brought forth again, but it is now red. The performer explains that he was only joking about using two knives, and that only one...

Top And Bottom Card Interchanges

While the need to transpose the top and bottom cards of the deck in an unobvious manner may not arise that often, there are occasions when a method for achieving this little task would be helpful. Here are two simple yet clever Elmsley solutions to the problem. First Solution In a relaxed moment, as you are talking and nonchalantly toying with the pack, take the cards into overhand shuffle position. Draw off the top and bottom cards together in a milking action, and drop the balance of the pack...

All Backs With Aces

Effect The performer introduces a pack of cards and a story. It seems he lent this pack to a fellow magician, and when it was returned something curious had happened to it there were no longer any faces on the cards only backs on both sides. Fortunately, the pack is marked, enabling the performer to tell what the cards are or so he claims. He shuffles and cuts the pack, showing backs everywhere, and in the process he explains that he is cutting to the aces, a most difficult task. Four...

The Centercard Rear Palm

The application of the pinky clip and rear palm to side steal technique soon occurred to Mr. Eimsley as he explored the possibilities of the rear palm particularly when given the lead provided by Hugard and Braue on pages 138 and 139 of Expert Card Technique. Once the required card was rightjogged from the center of the pack, using standard side steal procedure, it could then be caught in pinky clip and shifted to rear palm as it was secretly extracted from the pack. Russell T. Barnhart, in his...

Twisters Flush

Effect A royal flush is taken from the deck, displayed and turned face-down. The performer makes a magical gesture, twisting the packet end for end, and shows that this has caused the ten to turn face-up in the center. The packet is given another twist and the ten turns magically face-down while the jack turns face-up. Another magical gesture is made and the jack turns down and the queen turns up. Following this the queen rights itself and the king turns face-up. The only card that has yet to...

The Elmsley Cups And Balls Routine

Cups And Ball

Effect The time-honored set of three metal cups is set on the table, along with a small ball. The bail quickly vanishes from the performer's hand and appears under one of the cups. This feat is repeated. The ball is now caused to penetrate through the solid bottom of a cup, then to multiply into three balls. One ball is placed into each cup, but the three balls magically congregate in the center cup. The cups are then stacked together and inverted. From them issues a stream of salt enough salt...

Minimilton

Featuring the Five-as-Jive Ghost Count Effect The performer removes the ace through five of hearts from the deck, and the ace through five of diamonds. He openly arranges both packets of cards in numerical order and sets the heart packet aside. He next shuffles the diamond packet and has someone pick one of the five cards. This card, say the two of diamonds, is turned faceup and the remaining four cards are laid face-down over it. The performer explains that there is a magical sympathy that...

The Atomic Aces

Effect The four aces are removed from the pack, along with four spot cards. The aces and indifferent cards are clearly alternated in one face-down pile. Yet, with no other action, they separate, the aces collecting at the Lop. The ace of spades and one spoL card are Lhen nominaLed as leaders for Lheir groups. The oLher three aces are placed face-down behind the ace of spades, and Lhe Lhree indifferenl cards behind their leader card. When the packeLs are switched, the cards magically conform Lo...

The Great Pretender

Effect The performer removes the four kings from the pack and sets them on the table. Then four persons each choose a card. The four selections are lost back in the deck and one indifferent card is inserted face-down in the middle of the face-up kings. The packet is turned over and the indifferent card is shown again, now face-up. The performer makes a magical gesture and, when the cards are once more displayed, the indifferent card in the center has changed into the first person's selection....

Biddle Displacement

Fingers Peeling Packet Drawing

Here is a method for secretly displacing or exchanging cards in two discrete packets. Mr, Elmsley originally devised it as an alternative procedure to the wedge-break displacement used in Dai Vernon's Follow the Leader. Jr. ref. Phoenix, No. 277, pp. 1107-1108 . He does not consider this displacement superior to Mr. Vernon's only easier for him to execute. It is most certainly deceptive. Remove five red cards and five black cards from the deck and put the balance aside. Place the red cards on...

The Nodding Skull

Effect The performer exhibits a tiny human skull mounted on a simple counterbalance. This he perches on a base made from an innocent cardboard tube. The skull sits suspended on its two thin balance arms Figure 132 . The performer explains that the skull belonged to a midget sorcerer from the seventeenth century, and that it is capable of divining thoughts and answering questions. It then proceeds to do just that, by nodding mysteriously when queried and indicating chosen cards when shown them....

Hoftwister

Elmsley has combined Dai Vernon's Twisting the Aces with the plot of a well-known problem by J, N. Hofzinser. The four aces are tossed face-up onto Lhe table and another card is selected from the pack, noted and lost again. The performer explains that the aces will, through the process of elimination, magically identify the suit of the selection. The aces are turned facedown and passed Lhrough Lhe performer's closed hand. When Lhey are counted, one is found to have turned...

L L Publishing

Box 100 Tahoma, California 95733 This work was made possible by the help and generosity of a great many friends and acquaintances. Some of them provided considerable aid while in the midst of demanding and turbulent lives, Gordon Bruce of Glasgow, Scotland, and Milt Koil of Birmingham. Michigan, did immense amounts of research, unearthing scores of articles in old journals and booklets. Jack Avis also must be recognized among my major benefactors. Through his notebooks and correspondence,...

Liars Club

Effect A card is freely chosen, noted and lost back in the deck. The performer then runs quickly through the cards, openly culling roughly a dozen. He strips these as a block from the pack and inserts them into the center of the deck. This packet, he explains, is a program which, when loaded into the pack, turns it into a lie detector. The deck is then cut or briefly shuffled to activate it. The person who chose a card is now asked three questions about it however, he is given the option of...