Effect: A borrowed deck is shuffled and divided into two portions. A spectator selects a card from packet A and another spectator selects a card from packet B. Each spectator shuffles his respective packet, the cards are assembled, and the entire deck is shuffled. Another indifferent card is chosen and the spectator inserts it into the tabled deck as a face-up locator. This locator is shown to be face up between the two selections.
This sounds like a blockbuster effect, doesn't it? You can immediately see its strong points. (1) The deck is borrowed, unprepared and ungaffed. (2) Because the effect is impromptu, it is easily integrated into a close-up card act. (3) The selections seem to be free and fair and are accomplished in a direct, no-nonsense manner. (4) Both spectators shuffle their respective cards. This kind of open procedure is remembered and gives a hands-off impression. As far as other magicians are concerned, a control-factor appears unlikely. (5) A spectator inserts the locator card, a conditional aspect seldom observed by problem-solvers. (6) The entire effect moves along with no lagging or serious attention dips. Its pace is well suited for today's audiences.
Magicians involved in the Creative Game are synthesizers and synergism makers.66 A synthesizer combines disparate and abiding elements into new entities. A synergism maker does the same thing except that his combination increases the effectiveness of each element producing new entities. This routine is a synergistic attempt at combining known principles and maneuvers.
This effect uses a subtlety popularly associated with the "Smith Myth." 67 The principle of forcing two spectators to choose the same card is based on a semi-automatic, mathematically-based procedure credited to Professor Sydney Lawrence. 68
The "Smith Myth" is a matching-cards effect. Ken Krenzel also developed a matching routine along these lines.69 The handling of the climactic disclosure is from Carmen D'Amico. 70
Method: Borrow a deck, have it shuffled, and ask a spectator to divide it into two approximately equal portions. Pick up portion A and spread the cards between your hands as you look at spectator A and ask, "How would you like to select a card? From a spread or would you like to take a little 'peek'?"Close the spread and show how such a peek is taken.
Have spectator A select a card. This is a free choice. If he makes his selection via a peek, make sure that he pulls back on the cards rather than simply saying "stop." This precludes the use of a Peek Force. Regardless of which selection procedure is used, get a left pinky break below the chosen card.
With the cards squared, your left pinky kicks the selection into a diagonal jog position in preparation for Marlo's "Deliberate Side-Steal." As your left hand offers packet A to spectator A for shuffling, your right hand steals the selection and adds it onto tabled packet B. 71 Your timing must be right. This right-hand add-on is done as your right hand simultaneously scoops packet B from the table. Look at spectator A as you execute these actions.
As soon as spectator A takes his packet, overhand shuffle packet B and say, "Shuffle the cards like this!" This shuffle runs the top card (first selection) to the bottom. Give a couple of subsequent shuffles and retain the selection on the bottom. Look at spectator B and say, "I want you to select a card from your portion!" Perform the Hindu Shuffle Force, then Double-Cut the second (?) selection to the bottom and quickly crimp its outer right corner. Use Marlo's technique from The Cardician. Cut the packet and hand it to spectator B for shuffling. Both spectators have unknowingly chosen the same card!
Tell spectator B to assemble the packets and give the entire deck a thorough shuffle. Take the deck and give them some tabled riffle shuffles, then centralize the crimped dual-selection to the middle. Make sure that the crimped corner is at the inner left corner (towards yourself) as you table the cards.
Remove the top card and turn it face up as you tentatively ask, "Is this card anyone's selection?" Upon getting negative replies, hand this card face up to spectator A. Explain that he is to inset
66 This is one of the earliest mentions of synergism, a term learned from studying Buckminster Fuller.
67 This clever idea was initially published in Five O' Fetsch and credited to Fred Smith of Buffalo, New York.
68 The Lawrence idea is explained in Ten Self-Working Master Effects in an effect titled "Controlled Thoughts." Also see Edward Marlo's "A Multiple Effect" in The New Tops (October-1965).
69 Ken Krenzel contributed "Two-Gether Again" to Harry Lorayne's Afterthoughts (1975), p. 93, after this version appeared.
70 This is D'Amico's handling of Marlo's crimp notion from the book, Estimation (1962).
71 Marlo uses this procedure in an approach to the Stop Trick, which is explained in Expert Card Conjuring (1968). A similar add-on is also used in Marlo's "Direct Aces" in the same book.
this card face up into the middle of the deck. Gesture towards the center portion of the deck and add: "Anywhere you want, anywhere at all!"
Encourage the spectator to insert the face-up locator at the outer right corner of the pack, making a diagonal insertion. This will make the subsequent move easier. Once the card is inserted, further explain that the card will remain in this jogged condition. (Fig. 1)
Your left hand grips the jogged locator-card at point X (outer left corner) as your right hand comes over to grasp the tabled deck at points Y and Z, the longitudinal sides near the inner end. Your right thumb must contact the crimped card. Once in this position is reached, two actions occur at the same time: (1) Your left hand moves the locator card out and upwards; (2) Your right hand lifts all the cards at the crimp (including the crimped selection) in an upwards cutting action.
Your palm-down right hand continues to hold this cut-off packet in a face-down position as your left hand tosses the locator card aside. Without hesitation, your left hand deals the top card of the tabled talon face up to the table. Your right hand immediately transfers the cut-off packet face up into your left hand. Your right thumb presses down to cover the crimped corner, then your right hand slides this card off the cut-off portion as your left hand tables it face down. It is now an easy matter to take out the "work" as you table this dual-selection face up next to the indifferent card.
Both spectators will see their selection since they chose the same card. Each spectator also thinks that the indifferent card is the other spectator's selection. Look at the tabled cards and say, "It's incredible! You located both selections with a single thrust of a card." Name both cards, then look at the spectators and ask, "These are your selections, no?" They will affirm. When they do, do not permit them to speak any further or to actually name their card. Immediately proceed to your next effect.
You do not have to use the D'Amico-Marlo handling of the stab. Other versions work as well. There will be a temptation to actually use two selections and the crimp. This is okay, but something is lost in the process.
December 10, 1975
This routine is a combination of two items, both applied for the first time to a stabbing effect. The first item is a key card attributed to Will De Seive. The other item is a principle-technique
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