By Mark Strivings

Effect - A deck of promotional playing cards from the Budweiserâ„¢ company is brought out and shuffled freely by a spectator. This deck is the type that has a picture of one of the famous frogs from the popular commercials pictured on the backs of the cards. A card is selected by a free cut of the deck and remembered. The deck is then shuffled and cut again by the spectator, who then cuts the deck into three tabled packets.

The performer then produces three large toy frogs and explains that they are the greatest collection of psychic frogs in existence. The frogs are placed in corresponding positions with the packets of cards on the tabled. Upon squeezing the frogs, it is found that one of them squeaks and the others do not. Only the pile corresponding to the squeaking frog is left, the other two being eliminated. This pile is now dealt into three piles and the scene is repeated. Each time, one frog squeaks and the other two do not. The chosen pile is redealt each time until finally only three cards remain. For one last time, one frog squeaks and the other two do not. The spectator is asked to name their chosen card. Upon turning the one remaining card over it is found to be the very card named!

Method - This plays like gang busters for lay audiences. You will need two things to perform this. One is, of course, the wonderful Three Frog Monte' produced by Bob McCallister. This is a set of three toy frogs, all of which can be made to squeak or not to squeak when squeezed as desired. It's a wonderful prop and a wonderfully commercial premise unto itself. You will also need to obtain a deck of promotional playing cards that have one of the frogs pictured on the back from the well known Budweiserâ„¢ commercials. This can easily be adapted to virtually any type of playing card, but I particularly enjoy using the promotional cards as they fit the whole presentation so well.

There is some very minor one-time preparation. This preparation can also be found in Greater Magic on page 478, 'Two New Locator Cards - Coin Impression' by Will de Sieve. Take a court card (I use the Jack of Diamonds) and also get a quarter. Place the quarter in the center of the back of the card and press the coin into the card. You want to raise a ring on the face of the card, with as much of a rise to it as you can get. You will actually have to work the card a fair amount to get a good size ridge. This creates an upraised ring on the face of the card which will automatically create a break when the card is in the deck. The deck can be thoroughly shuffled and cut by anyone, and you will be able to cut this key/force card to the face of the pack at any time. This works like a charm. You're now ready to perform.

The working is simplicity itself. Have the cards shuffled by a spectator. Retrieve the cards and cut the force card to the center of the pack. It's easy to tell if you have the force card for sure, simply by cutting it to the face of the pack and running your fingers across the face. You will feel the ridge easily.

With the force card in the center, you have a couple of options. The best is to have the spectator reach out and cut the cards. Watch closely as they do this and see if they cut to the force card. Odds are that they will. If this is the case, have them lever the cards towards themselves and remember the card. Have them reassemble the deck and shuffle.

If they do not cut to the center (remember to watch closely), simply have them complete the cut without looking at the card. Have two or three others cut as well until the force card is back near the center. Complete as above.

Obviously you could do any of several other things to effect the force as well. Since you have automatic control of the card, you could cut it to a force position and riffle force, slip force, cross-cut force or even classic force the card. I prefer to do it as above however because it is so clean and you can point out the fact that you did not touch the cards at all!

However you decide to do it, after the cards are shuffled, retrieve the deck and cut the force card to the bottom. Table the deck and have your spectator cut the deck into three packets. The force card will be on the bottom of the original bottom portion of the deck. I keep it to my left.

Introduce the frogs. Squeeze each frog, making the one that corresponds with the pile that contains the card squeak. Remove the other two piles and have the spectator deal the remaining heap into three piles. Simply watch to see where the last card falls. Make that frog squeak on the next round and repeat the above actions. This time the selection will be the first card dealt. Repeat this as many times as it takes to get it down to three cards and complete as outline in the presentation.

Frequently, you will not have three cards in the last dealt round. 1 simply play this by ear. Sometimes the selection is a single card and one or both of the other piles have two cards. Other times 1 have only two cards left to be dealt. When this happens I just have them deal the two cards in front of any frogs and finish the effect. Try it a couple of times and you'll see how easy it is to finish this regardless of the configuration.

This is a very commercial effect that has room for lot's of laughs. Try it, you and yo " " !i1

This is a very commercial effect that has room for lot's of laughs. Try it, you and yo " " !i1

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