Littte Jackpot Grins

L\ THE EXPLANATION of 'The Trick Thar Fooled Einstein (p. 119) i promised 1 would teach a handling of chat routine designed for close-up performance rather than platform. This is it. My inspiration was a dose-up approadi by Jon Racherbaumer, which appeared in his M-U-Mcolumn (Vol. 70, No. 7, Dec 1980, p. 30) and later in his book At ri?e Tabic {p. 60). An interesting aspect of Jons version is that he uses coins of different denominations. To diis 1 have added my coin holder, the precise language needed to increase die mystery, and the option of performing it as a telephone test.

effect and presentation: Two acquaintances—friends perhaps, at the dinner table—arc asked to take out all the coins they have. While they do this, the performer reaches into his own pocket and deposits a substantial handful of cash into an empty glass. He then takes a glance at the coins held by the spectators and asks them to combinc their wealth—or if diey like— oniyaporrion of it. after which one of them holds die combined pile. (A single person may be used for the test, if he has a sufficient number of coins. But often people carry only a litdc change these days.)

The performer announces that he will make three pnedicrions. Raising the first finger to denote Prediction One: "Ihave exactly the same amount of money as you. "He repeats this slowly.

Raising a second finger '7 have the same as you—plus twenty-six cents more. He says this with great deliberation, so dial every word sinks in.


-Raising a third tingcr: 7 have the same as you* twenty-six cetiu more—and enough left over to make your coins total $2.80. "This third prediction he also repeats. M 7he same—plus tuxnty-six. cents—and enough lo make your total $2.80." ' • .. •

'llie spectator counts rhc change he holds. .Assume its total is $ 1.42. The performer dumps his own coins from the glass onto the table. Carefully, allowing no possibility for moves,he draws away $ 1.42 and drops these on ins one at a time back into rhc glass. He does this slowly, so that each coins clinks loudly as it land*. Thus, his first prediction proves correct.

Deliberately, he separates another twenty-six cents and drops these coins into the glass, saying, "Plus twenty-six cents. "(Prediction Two.) He then asks his helpers, 'And what is the third prediction's" v'Same as mine, plus twenty-six cents and enough to make mine total $2.80," is rhc reply.

"Right? The first two are correct, feet's see what you have. You have $1.42. " The performer picks up three pennies and drops'them one by one into the glass. K<lhere> thai tnakes $1.4'5. 'He next picks up a nickel and drops it in. "That makes $1.50."

He treat* four quarters in the same way: dink, dink, dink, clink. "That makes $2.50."

Only three dimes remain. He picks them up and drops them in. "$2.60, $2.70, $2.80—exactly $180!"No coins are left over, proving the third prediction aLo correct.

Mm IOD: This presentation often fools knowledgeable persons who understand the principle with marblei or matches. The business of saying the dollar amount, plus twenty-six cents and enough for $2.80 makes the undedying principle very difficult to follow. How can all these different coins—pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters—add up to the predicted total? The answer is, of course, that the principle is exactly the same as explained in "The Trick That Fooled Einstein.'

Here is how I handle things. First I make a coin holder from a 35 mm. film canister or medicine vial to hold ten quarters, three dimes, four nickels and six pennies. See page 123 for construction details for rhis gimmick. The coins make no noise when in the gimmick and are easily carried in your pocket, ready to be introduced in a casual way.

With this setup, so long as die total held by the person is under $2.80, the trick will always work.

With this approach you do no secret counting or memory work.

theater of the afhvd

ON THE TELEPHONE: Prearrange with a friend ro play rhe role of seer and give her a card on which you have clearly printed rhe chree prediction statements. When the participants call her, she can clearly and confidently repeat these statements. The performer dien takes oven verifying the predictions.

Walt Lees suggests reversing the situation. Give the coins to a friend who is at attendance at a party. Then have the group cailyou at home. Of course, your prediction* turn Out correct.

Interestingly, your accomplicc in cither situation will probably not understand how the trick works any better than do the people tor whom the two of you are performing it. .

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